How To Send An Encrypted Email In Outlook -The Ultimate 3 Methods


The issues of encrypting email and protecting privacy are on everyone’s mind these days since email has replaced other forms of communication for both personal and corporate purposes. No matter what size your business is, it’s always your responsibility to maintain the privacy of clients’ information and their affairs. Encrypted emails sent through Outlook offer the utmost security of the information that’s been sent. These can only be read by the recipient who has the private key. Encrypting an email in Outlook is super easy if you have office 365. In this article I’m going to teach you three methods on how to send an encrypted email in Outlook.

What Are Email Encryption Options?

There are basically three methods to encrypt your Outlook email.

Microsoft 365 Message Encryption – To use Microsoft 365 Message Encryption, the sender must have Microsoft 365 Message Encryption, which is included in the Office 365 Enterprise E3 license.

S/MIME encryption – To use S/MIME encryption, the sender and recipient must have a mail application that supports the S/MIME standard. Outlook supports the S/MIME standard.

Outlook Add-ins – You can use third-party add-ins to send an encrypted email if you don’t have Office 365.

Microsoft 365 Message Encryption

You can send encrypted emails to your recipient with ease using Microsoft Office 365 Message Encryption (OME). The benefit of OME is that neither you nor the recipient has installed any certificates in order to encrypt or open emails.

When you send an encrypted email using Office 365, the recipient only sees the email’s subject. In order to view the email in full, the recipient can either open the email after undergoing a verification or they can read the email online after an extra verification step.

What Office 365 License Includes Encryption?

  • Microsoft 365 Personal or Family
  • Office 365 Enterprise E3 or E5
  • Microsoft 365 Enterprise E3 or E5
  • Microsoft 365 Business Premium
  • Office 365 A1, A3, or A5

How To Send An Encrypted Email In Outlook Office 365?

1. Open Outlook and compose the email. You may include the subject, Body, and even attachments.

2. Go to “ Options” in the ribbon and click “ Encrypt.”.

3. Select the appropriate option.

Outlook offers the following encryption options.

  • Unrestricted: The default, unsecured format for emails
  • Encrypt Only: Requires the recipient to use a one-time passcode to verify their identity and read the message
  • Do Not Forward: Includes the Encrypt Only features, and does not allow the recipient to forward the message to other contacts
  • Confidential / All Employees: Restricts access to recipients with an approved email account, which can be limited to specific staff members

3. You may now send the email. Above the address field, you will also see a small note confirming that your email is encrypted.


How To Send Encrypted Emails Using Outlook Online Web App?

You can use Outlook online to send Office 365 encrypted emails. Even though the menu looks a bit different, the principal steps are essentially the same.

1 Compose the email.

2 Click on the “ Encrypt” button in the toolbar ( Near send button).


3 Click Send.

If you are a new user of Outlook online, you may not see the “Encrypt” button in the toolbar. You can easily add it to the toolbar by following the below steps.

1 Click the settings icon,

2 Select All Outlook Settings

3 Click on Mail

4 Select Customize Actions

5 Choose Encrypt


S/Mime Encryption

1. Under the File menu, select Options > Trust Center > Trust Center Settings.

2. In the left pane, select Email Security.

3. Under Encrypted email, choose Settings.

4. Under Certificates and Algorithms, click Choose and select the S/MIME certificate.

5. Choose OK

If you are an Office Insider with Microsoft 365 subscription, here’s what is new to you:

1. In an email message, choose Options, select Encrypt, and pick Encrypt with S/MIME option from the drop-down,

2. You’ll see an Encrypt with S/MIME if you have a S/MIME certificate installed on your computer.

For Outlook 2019 and Outlook 2016,

1. In an email message, choose Options, and select Permissions.

2. Finish composing your email and then choose Send.

We don’t recommend this method to be used unless the business requires it. If you want to read more about S/MIME encryption, click here.

Outlook Add-ins 

You can also use an external add-in for Outlook to encrypt emails if you don’t have a subscription to Office 365. The only difference between these add-ins and the Office 365 Message Encryption service is that the email is always sent to the recipient’s online mailbox.

You can use the free plugin provided by Encyro to send encrypted email messages to any email address. To compose and send secure mail, you can use either the Outlook add-in or the online portal.

Installation is rather simple, and the only need for sending encrypted emails is that the sender has an Encyro account. Similar to OME, the recipient is given a link to the encrypted message.

Anyone with access to the link can view the encrypted message. However, the link itself has a limited validity period, making it slightly more secure.

The benefit of this method is that the receiver can access the encrypted mail without having to go through a number of verification steps. Additionally, you can demand that the recipient registers for a free Encyro account and log in before viewing the email.


There are many different ways to send an encrypted email in Outlook. The most convenient method out of all is to use Microsoft Office 365 Message Encryption Option. Add-ins can be helpful too, but compared to the default encryption option provided by Office 365, they seem a bit less secure to me.

Using S/MIME encryption is not recommended unless you really have to do it. After all, use whatever option works best for you. Thanks for reading the article. If you need any help, feel free to comment below.

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