Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Encryption and digital signatures?

Q. Is encryption of emails possible? Are digital signatures for encryption being implemented?

A. Message encryption and digital signatures are available in Outlook using an S/MIME standards-based system.


Encrypting a message protects the privacy of the message by converting it from plain, readable text into cipher (scrambled) text. Only the recipient who has the private key that matches the public key that you used to encrypt the message can decipher the message. Encryption is a separate process from digitally signing a message.

Digital signatures

You can digitally sign an email by using a digital certificate, which is an attachment for an e-mail message that vouches for authenticity, provides secure encryption, or supplies a verifiable signature.