Protect users from suspicious links in IMAP email clients

To help prevent phishing and other suspicious email activity, Google Workspace protects against suspicious links in Gmail. Link protection checks for malicious or other suspicious links in Gmail messages. For example, spammers can send links in email that trick people into giving up sensitive information, and hackers can include links to harmful software. Gmail link protection warns your users when they click links in these messages.

If your users send and receive email using third-party IMAP clients, turn on suspicious link protection for IMAP clients. IMAP link protection provides the same protection as Gmail, for IMAP clients. IMAP link protection checks links when the recipient clicks a message link, but before they're redirected to the link. If the link is valid and points to a safe website, the user is redirected to the site.

IMAP client link protection supports:

  • iOS Mail
  • Mac Mail
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Common Android mail clients.

You can check if IMAP is turned on for your users by following the steps in Turn POP and IMAP on and off for users.

Learn more about protecting against malicious website links in Gmail.

Turn on link protection for IMAP email clients

To turn on link protection for third-party IMAP email clients:

  1. Sign in to your Google Admin console.

    Sign in using your administrator account (does not end in

  2. In the Admin console, go to Menu and then Appsand thenGoogle Workspaceand thenGmailand thenSafety.
  3. Scroll to the IMAP view time protections setting and click Off.
  4. Check the Enable IMAP link protection box.
  5. Save your changes.

Google, Google Workspace, and related marks and logos are trademarks of Google LLC. All other company and product names are trademarks of the companies with which they are associated.

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