About security in Outlook

Outlook provides the following security-related features that help protect your computer, information, identity, and privacy.



Junk e-mail protection

This feature helps to keep spam messages from arriving in your inbox. In Outlook, you can set options for junk e-mail protection such as what levels of protection to use, when to block messages, and what senders or domains to block.

Phishing detection

Outlook warns you if it detects that a link in a message may lead to a fraudulent Web site.

Digital signatures

You can send and receive messages that have a digital signature. Digital signatures help confirm the identity of the sender to verify whether the message is sent by an imposter.

Message encryption

This feature helps protect the privacy of the message by scrambling the text. Only your intended recipients can unscramble the text and read the contents of the message.

Smart card support

If you use a smart card, Outlook accesses the card's signing certificate or encryption certificate when you plug the card into your computer's smart card reader.

Protection from unauthorized access from other applications

Some computer viruses use the e-mail program on the infected computer to send the virus to other people. To help prevent the spread of viruses in this manner, Outlook warns you before another application tries to send a mail message through Outlook or access your Outlook contacts.

Privacy options for downloading pictures

When you download pictures in e-mail messages, junk mail senders can tell that your address is active and may continue to send you spam. To help protect your privacy, Outlook, by default, doesn't download pictures in mail messages unless the sender is in your address book.

Note: With a Microsoft Exchange account, junk e-mail is filtered by the Exchange server, and not by Outlook.

See also

Customize junk e-mail protection

About digital signing, encryption, and smart cards

Send a digitally signed or encrypted message

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