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Service Overview

This Help Center article is for Postini, a suite of Google services that's now discontinued. If you're searching for instructions related to Google Apps, see the Google Apps Help Center. For instructions related to Google Apps Vault, see the Vault Help Center.
What is Google Message Discovery?

Google Message Discovery is an email filtering service powered by Postini. Message Discovery works with your existing email system by filtering mail on the way to and from your mail service. With Message Discovery, you get:

  • Spam and virus filtering for all email addresses at your domain, including mailing lists and user aliases
  • Content and attachment filters, which you can create to enforce your company's policies for inbound or outbound messages
  • Approved and blocked senders lists, which you can use to ensure or prevent delivery from specific senders—or even whole domains
  • The Message Center, which lets users manage their quarantined messages and set up their own approved and blocked senders lists
  • A central message archive, which automatically stores copies of all your users' email messages
  • Discovery tools, which let you (and other designated users) recover lost messages, retrieve messages for legal or compliance purposes, and monitor users' message content
  • The Personal Archive, which lets users access and recover their own archived messages
What is the Account Administrator?

The Account Administrator is the top-level administrator of your Message Discovery service. The administrator who activates the service is automatically granted Account Administrator privileges. This administrator can then grant administrative privileges to other users at the domain. For detailed information on administrator accounts, see the Administration section of the Administration Guide.

What is the Administration Console?

The Administration Console includes all the tools you use to set up and administer your Message Discovery service. It is where you can add users for filtering and archiving, set options for spam and virus blocking, create email content and attachment filters, manage users' access to the Message Center, and view reports. Here's what the console's home page looks like:

What is the message archive?

Google Message Discovery includes archiving for all messages to and from your users. Message Discovery creates a copy of all email messages (except spam and virus-infected messages) that flow through your service and stores them in the message archive in a secure data center. You can use the Message Discovery search tools to find any users' messages and export them from the archive.

You can find full instructions for setting up archiving in the Configuring Message Archiving page in the Help Center.

Does Google Message Discovery filter and archive messages to email lists and aliases?

Message Discovery filters and archives mail for all email addresses at your organization, including email lists and aliases, as long as these accounts are added in your Administration Console. Once you've activated your account, you can review the Message Discovery documentation to learn how to add a mailing list or email alias for filtering and archiving.

How does Message Discovery filter email?

After you fully activate your Google Message Discovery service, all your users' email messages flow through the service, including:

  • Inbound email: Messages sent to users from outside your company. Inbound filtering starts working as soon as you activate your service.
  • Outbound email: Messages that users send to others outside your company. Once you've activated your service, you can find instructions for configuring outbound services in the Outbound section of the Administration Guide.

As your email flows through Message Security, the service applies spam and virus filters. Any content filters and attachment filters you create are also applied to the messages, and a copy of each message is stored in the Message Archive. Note: Intradomain mail (messages sent internally between users in your organization) is not filtered by the message security service.

How inbound email flows through the service

The Google Message Discovery service filters all inbound messages and blocks or quarantines spam and virus-infected messages. If you've created any inbound content or attachment filters to enforce company policies, the service also blocks or quarantines any inbound messages that violate a policy. Messages that are not blocked or quarantined are delivered to your users, with a copy of each delivered message stored in the message archive.

How outbound email flows through the service

The service filters outbound messages for viruses and blocks any infected messages. Outbound filtering protects your recipients from accidental infection and protects your reputation as a sender to ensure that valid email for your organization will be accepted. If you've created any outbound content or attachment filters to enforce company policies, the service also blocks or quarantines any outbound messages that violate a policy. A copy of each legitimate message from your domain is added to the message archive.

What happens to messages that are blocked by filters?

The Message Discovery administrator determines what happens to undelivered messages. You can choose to have spam or virus content bounced, deleted, or sent to a quarantine in the Message Center. You can also decide what to do with messages caught by any content or attachment filters you set up, and can specify different dispositions for each filter if you need to.

If you decide to quarantine any blocked messages, you and your users can access these messages in the Message Center. The Message Center includes a Junk Quarantine and optional Virus and Pending Quarantines. Learn more

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