Outlook Attachments: Confirm Open After Download

Posted on 2008-11-13
Last Modified: 2012-05-05
Management asked to get rid of the "Opening Mail Attachment" confirmation window.
This is easily done by going to Control Panel > Folder Options > File Types:
For each file ext. click advanced, and uncheck "Confirm Open After Download".

I have already disabled it for Word Documents, Excel Documents, and PDFs. However, I told them that it would not be secure to do this for all file types, such as EXE files.

Now, management wants to know how this would be unsecure to get rid of this window for all file types.
I need to know all aspects of how this would compromise our security, and could put us in a vulnerable situations, and what problems this might cause.

Thank you.
Question by:pzozulka
    LVL 3

    Accepted Solution


    Every file coming from the outside, even if its virus scanned, can contain a virus that is not recognized by your virus engine (yet), for example a macro-virus in office-documents.
    Well, a warning obviously warns you, that the file you are about to open could harm your system.
    Thats all there is to it. It gives the person opening a file one more chance to stop what he is doing.

    For your .exe file case: I would not even allow .exe to be opened at all from emails.
    I think for Outlook 2003+ .exe files are blocked by default. This can only be changed by using a special form in a exchange environment.
    LVL 50

    Assisted Solution

    pzozulka--To be on the safe side, NO attachment to an email should be allowed to open without scanning it with antivirus program.  I always download the attachment and scan before opening.  So you can get rid of the message, but you should always scan the attachment with AV.

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