Tips For Using A PKI Certificate With Microsoft Outlook

There are a lot of different statistics available on the use of different email clients. Most are generated by the specific email client provider, so they tend to be biased as to one or a group of possible email clients.

However, in an independent study, the group Litmus Email Analytics tracked 1.29 billion email opens in the month of September 2016. Not surprisingly the most common email client used was the Apple iPhone email at 33%, followed by Gmail (16%), Apple iPad (11%) and Google Android at (10%). Outlook and placed number 6 and 7 respectively with 7% and 5%.

With the popularity of this email client across both mobile devices and on PCs, it is often important for a user to have to export and import the certificate. The good news is that if you apply for the PKI certificate for Microsoft Outlook from the computer you wish to use the installation will be very simple. If you are using a corporate account that is working through the EPKI Manager (Enterprise Public Key Infrastructure Manager) the installation will be automatic.

These corporate or business types of accounts will just require that the user provides specific information. This is also true with the personal PKI certificate for Microsoft Outlook. If you are familiar with the use of SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificates, then you understand the information is required to authenticate the certificate holder and to ensure it is not fraudulently obtained.

To Start Signing and Encrypting

If the PKI certificate for Microsoft Outlook is already installed, you do not need to do anything to complete the process of the installation. However, you will need to do a few quick steps to assign the certificate and to be able to actually complete the encrypting and digital signatures.

You will need to have the receipt's email certificate to be able to encrypt a message to them so they can encrypt it with their private key. You will do this by requesting that they send you a digitally signed email. Your Outlook account will recognize that the email contains a digital signature and the sender's public key. This will be automatically stored in your personal Outlook certificate store with their email name.

When you send an email to them with encryption and the digital signature, this public key will be used to complete the encryption. Your private key will create the digital signature. Once received their private key will decrypt the message and the public key will be used to read the digital signature. In this way, the email can only be read by the sender and receiver and no other entities.

To assign your certificate in your Outlook account, you will need to go to File, Options and Trustcenter Settings. Here you will find the listing "E-mail Security." Click on that and then Settings. You can then click to choose the signing certificate and encryption certificate options one at a time. This will bring up a separate list of certificates and just choose the Comodo Personal Authentication Certificates for both. Once you have completed this for the PKI certificate for Microsoft Outlook, you simply click OK.

Now, when opening Outlook, you will find the accessible options for Encrypt and Sign under the Options tab in the header. Once you have written the email and attached the documents required, you will just need to click either encrypt, sign or both to provide the specific level of secure transmission required.

It is also possible to set up your PKI certificate for Microsoft Outlook to automatically sign and encrypt all emails by default. This requires going back into the E-mail security section and checking the boxes to encrypt contents and add a digital signature to outgoing messages. Of course, you can choose just one or the other and complete the other operation manually from the email header for individual types of security requirements.

With our step-by-step guides to help you to export and import as well as configure your email you have full control over the system. Of course, you can also reconfigure at any time if your needs change, just go back into the Email Security and Trust Center sections to make changes.

For more information on our Personal Authentication Certificates for personal or business use, visit us online at This is also where you can find out information about our EPKI Manager for businesses. We are also available to help you to get the right products and solutions for your online security needs at +1 888 266 6361.

Related Articles
Back to TOP