Skip to main content
My preferencesSign out
Proofpoint, Inc.

Email Encryption

Situation You want to learn more about Encryption and find articles about Encryption.
Solution Please start here for all your Encryption needs.

General information

If your company is using the Email Encryption service, your outgoing emails (emails that you send) may be routed to the Proofpoint Essentials encryption service. Depending on how your company has configured this feature:

  1. this action may be triggered automatically or
  2. it may require you to add an identifier to email you wish to be encrypted.

Both scenarios are explored below.

This KB will assist on Setting-up Email Encryption Filters

Automatic Detection

In this scenario, your company scans outgoing email and looks for specific, potentially sensitive content, such as credit cards numbers or banking information. If an outgoing email is found to contain such content, the email is routed to the Proofpoint Essentials encryption service. There the email is stored (Expires after 15 days) and email notifications are sent to the recipients to direct them back to the encryption service where they can read and respond to your email. You will also receive a notification informing you that your email has been selected for encryption. If this happens, you do not need to take any action: your email has been sent and recipients will have a chance to respond. You can also reply to responses you receive to your inbox. Replies will also be encrypted.

Responses are delivered to your inbox.

Manual Detection

Your company may provide you with instructions on how to manually trigger an email to be encrypted. This works in the same way described above, but you will insert a term, likely in the subject line, in any email to be encrypted. Proofpoint Essentials will detect that term and route your email to the encryption service. For example, you may be instructed to insert the term “[Encrypt]” into the subject line of any email message to be encrypted, before your normal subject. The email will be detected and routed to the encryption service and recipients will be sent notifications. You will receive an email notification informing you that your email has been selected for encryption. All replies will be delivered back to your inbox. Note that the trigger term (i.e., [Encrypt]) is removed from your recipient's email but is re-inserted back into replies to ensure that if you reply to a response, it too will be encrypted.

Note: Email sent to the Encryption Portal expires after 15 days and is deleted after expiration. This is not adjustable.


References for encryption services

Here are some articles on general process for encryption

Email Encryption Getting Started Guide - Start here for a rundown on Encryption services

Setting-up Email Encryption Filters - Filter set-up will allow you to create custom filters, like in the case of automatic detection

Proofpoint Essentials Email Encryption Plug-in for Outlook - Where to find the plug-in to use with Encryption

Register for Encrypted Email - SecureMail Portal - What a recipient of an encrypted email should do

How to Reset my password for the Encryption Portal - How a recipient can reset their password to the Encryption portal


Here are some troubleshooting articles to work with Encryption.

How do I know my Encrypted email was sent? - How to confirm emails are encrypted and sent

Encryption Plug-in not showing - Fix some issues with the plug-in not working

Error opening encrypted emails and attachments - Problems accessing a message and viewing attachments in portal.