How to Maintain Outlook Security?

Written By Deepmala
Chirag Arora
Approved By Chirag Arora  
Published On October 5th, 2023
Reading Time 5 Minutes Reading

MS Outlook, the most frequently used desktop email client also offers protection over viruses to keep the attachments and associated email messages safe. The feature with which one can do the same is called as Outlook Security. The email client keeps the security settings by default. Users can say there is pre-defined template which is devoted to offer data security that can implemented with some restrictions as well. Download permissions to get the data from a particular file format, automation code Outlook controlled access, and improving the data security settings, all such security preventives are managed under Outlook security settings.

If you are having administrative rights, then you can manage the organizational needs by making changes accordingly. For managing custom security settings, the client side should be enabled with MS Exchange Server. If Exchange Server is not available, then OST (offline folders) or Mailbox that is abbreviated as MDB should saved as the location where emails will be stored. Outlook email client security settings will not get modified if you have the local PST file or the Outlook is used by any organization without opting the associated email service.

Caution: When you are going to modify the security setting, always check the prevention clauses because, improper changes in security clauses may show the unhealthy situations by making virus flow bitter.

Know More About Security Settings Of Outlook

The custom security setting details for Outlook PST files usually get stored in a public folder tree, but at the top-most level. For every user who have to set modified security settings should have to opt registry key. If there is availability of the particular key, then Server will fetch for the same to make the authorized security settings usable to that user. If some security settings are previously defined, then there may be a connection of these settings with administrator-defined settings.

Outlook Security Settings’ Tools

Outlook security administrative tools are packaged as set of four files named as:

  • For customizing Microsoft Exchange security settings there is an Outlook template that is named as OutlookSecurity.oft. This file is for setting the location of customized security clauses
  • The tool used by security template for managing and controlling COM add-ins control is named as Hastctl.dll, the another file under Outlook security settings.
  • For selection of trusted COM add-in there will be a file which has trusted code control reach and the file is named as Comdlg32.ocx
  • The collection of templates deploying Exchange Server settings is packed into Readme.doc file, the fourth file of Outlook account security settings.

Configuring And Using Trusted Code Control

Once you have installed Trusted Code Control, you will be able to change and add up new Outlook security settings. To do the same, you first need to register yourself at administrative computer. If it is not registered, then you will see an error.

  • Move Hashctl.dll to the system32 folder of winnt, if the operating system directory is not located there, then locate the appropriate folder
  • Go to Run from Start menu and perform the command line by typing regsvr32 hashctl.dll
  • The same procedure of keeping Comdlg32.ocx files into system32 folder should followed by the user. The next task to be done will be regsvr32comdlg32.ocx extraction from command line.

It’s Time To Customize Security Settings

The security template of Outlook that gets executed by MS Outlook but enforced by Exchange Server is named as Outlook Security template and this template contains:

  • Programmatic settings
  • Outlook Security settings
  • Trusted codes

First use of the template will be set the default value for all Outlook security elements.

Security Settings With Outlook Public Folders

  • Creating a public folder with name ‘Outlook Security Settings’
  • Creation of Access Control lists to make security settings accessible for all users
  • Creation of security groups if there is a need of sharing security settings within multiple users
  • Once the Security Settings folder will get created, required permission changes will be done using templates

Altering Security Settings Accordingly

Steps for changing default security settings are:

  • The computer at which Outlook is being used should availed with active OutlookSecurity.oft under the folder of Outlook Security tools
  • Select Security folder and it should be available into Compose mode
  • Locate Publish Form into Forms and this option will be available into Tools menu
  • You need to type Outlook Security Form in Form Name box
  • Publish security settings of the Security folder using Publish button, once you are done, you need to close the security template
  • Into drop-down menu of your MS Outlook, get New tab and afterwards you need to make selection of Choose Form
  • Move to navigation of Template that you have created recently and, then click to Open tab
  • For defined set of Outlook users required to get Outlook security create custom settings or security settings

There are different ways to create security settings for multiple users and for customized security settings.

How to Create Security Settings?

When you are with administrative rights, you will get prompted whenever security settings will get created. And the prompt will be seen at screen two times. It is required to fill proper credential details otherwise the user will get a message saying “Operation Failed”. It shows that security settings are designed but, not available in a healthy mode. The settings will be applied for all, if the item is not deleted by own.

Edit Outlook Security Settings

When the security form of existing list of members is added by administrator, then it is suggested to get alias for the active forms.


Altogether, MS Outlook is playing the role of highly used email client with great security features. Outlook security features are easy to manage accordingly if you have administrative rights. Configuring security settings with Trusted code control and editing accordingly, both of these tasks are easy to perform. In this way, customizing the preventive measures for MS Outlook is quite easy.