Hosted S/MIME FAQ

Supported editions for this feature: Enterprise; Education Fundamentals, Education Standard, Teaching and Learning Upgrade, and Education PlusCompare your edition

This article answers questions about client support for hosted S/MIME and message signing and encryption.

Which clients support hosted S/MIME?

Hosted S/MIME is supported when sending email using Gmail clients from Google for web and mobile devices and other clients, such as IMAP. If you send a message using the other clients, Gmail signs the message and, if possible, encrypts it. You should not add the S/MIME certificate to the client itself since the S/MIME signature/encryption is hosted by Gmail.

Why are some of my recipients getting messages with a 'smime.p7s' attachment?

If the recipient’s email client doesn't support S/MIME, the messages you send will include the certificate as a smime.p7s attachment. Gmail on web, Android and iOS, and Inbox won't show the S/MIME attachments. 

Can I use hosted S/MIME with mailing lists?

If you send an email signed with S/MIME to a mailing list, such as Google Groups, the mailing list might break the signature by modifying the message (by adding a footer, for example), which would cause S/MIME verification to fail.

Why do some messages fail verification or decryption when accessing in Thunderbird?

You can configure Thunderbird to not download attachments larger than a given size. Since S/MIME data is stored as an attachment, if the S/MIME attachment is too large, this can prevent S/MIME processing.
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