How safe is my email from computer viruses?


Gmail automatically scans every attachment when it's delivered to you, each time you open a message, and attachments you send to check for viruses. This helps to protect everyone who uses Gmail, and prevents the spread of viruses.

If our system is unable to scan certain files, you'll see an error reading 'Oops... the virus scanner has a problem right now.' You'll have the option to try again later or to download the attachment at your own risk. Please note that if Gmail can't scan the contents of the file, we can't guarantee that it's safe to view. 

ITS Tip: There are two ways to protect your email.

  • If you use an email service that does not have an anti-virus scanner, you may set up your UH Email Account to automatically scan and forward your email before you read it on your unprotected email service.
    How to forward email on your UH Email Account

    Google@UH users: Refer to the instructions at Ask Us 1208.

    1. Login to Google@UH
    2. Click on the Gear icon located on the upper right-hand corner.
    3. Select Mail settings.
    4. Click on the Forwarding and POP/IMAP tab
    5. Click the Add a forwarding address button
    6. Type the email address you wish to forward to and click Next.
    7. Click the Proceed button after verifying that the address you typed is correct.
    8. Select the radio button to Forward a copy of incoming mail to and select the correct email address from the drop down.
    9. Optionally you can set forwarding options. By default keep Gmail's copy in the Inbox is selected.
    10. Click Save Changes.
    11. Tell your friends and colleagues to send email to your UH Email Account. Your email messages will automatically be scanned by the anti-virus scanner on the Google@UH Gmail mail server and will be sent to the email address that you typed into the mail forwarding box.
  • If you do not want to use the first method, you may choose to manually send selected email messages, that you want scanned for viruses, to your UH email account. If the email message appears in your mailbox, the message is okay. If the email message does not appear in your mailbox within 15 minutes, the message probably contained a known virus and was deleted by the anti-virus scanner.


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Article ID: 548
Created: Fri, 17 Feb 2006 10:16am
Modified: Tue, 24 Jul 2012 1:50pm