Lotus Notes is widely used in some corporatesectors and Business enterprises to communicate with each other. What make it the most powerful emailing application is its security features that protect confidential data from being misused or theft.
It offers strong encryption and other security settings to users to secure Notes database. Lotus Notes store all mailbox data in NSF format on local desktop of computer containing Emails, Contacts, Calendars, Journals and To Do lists.
When IBM Notes is used integrated with Domino Server then user has ability to secure NSF file via Encryption function. In this section we will elaborate the process to secure Notes NSF files using Encryption settings along with the process to open encrypted NSF files in MS Outlook PST format.
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Encryption Can Be Applied On Following:
- Email messages sent to other users that disable user to read the message. Also, incoming messages can be encrypted.
- Network ports can be encrypted containing information about Lotus Notes workstation and Domino Server. This help to prevent data from being misused while transmitting.
- Internet transactions can be also encrypted using SSL to protect information sent between client and Server.
- Message fields, documents and databases can be encrypted individually to allow only specified users to read the information.
Overview Of Encryption
IBM Notes uses RSA algorithms (Public key used to secure transmit data) to encrypt a message. This feature requires authentication of Lotus Notes with Domino Server.
When a user registers primarily with Server an ID file is created that contains Public and Private keys. Public key is used to encrypt fields, documents, database and messages; on the other hand private key is used to for decryption.
Public key is stored in certificate (Lotus Domino Directory) whereas Private key is stored separately from certificate.
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When any user registers, a Lotus Notes certificate containing public key of user will be automatically created by Lotus Notes and added to ID file & Domino Directory. On the other hand private key is created and added to ID file. The public and private keys can be also created after user registration.
Role Of Lotus Notes ID File
Lotus Notes ID file is very important file for users that contains information about Notes database security with .id* extension. With the help of password ID file allows users to access Server and personal encrypted information.
This file gets automatically stored in Notes directory but can also be moved according to the needs of users. Notes.ini a Notes configuration file, which also gets store in Notes directory help to define the name and location of ID file in Key Filename settings.
To change the default settings of this file go to File – Security – Switch ID.
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How To Encrypt Mail?
There are number of ways into which email can be encrypted, use this first option under ‘User Security’ with multiple options to encrypt NSF file.
In second option email can be encrypted while composing, in new mail message go to Display and then choose ‘Additional Mail Options’.
Click on ‘Encrypt’ option to encrypt message before sending it to other user. The message will be delivered in encrypted form to other user.
A user can decrypt NSF file using ID file, but if there is any issue in ID file then it will prompt error message like ‘You are not authorized to access this database’.
In such situations users cannot access NSF file database which leads to unwanted losses.
Also, in some situations these encrypted NSF files causes lot of trouble when users migrate from Lotus Notes platform to any other platform such as MS Outlook.
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How To Open Encrypted NSF File?
To open encrypted NSF file in Outlook you can use NSF to PST converter tool that permit users to convert complete mailbox data from Lotus Notes email client to MS Outlook.
Prior to converting database, the tool provides option for users to remove encryption from NSF files so that encrypted emails can be accessed in Outlook without facing any error messages.
Users are required to provide NSF file with tool to remove encryption, the tool provide further options like category selection, Exclude email folders, advance settings and filters to migrate data choicely.
The tool output an Outlook PST file to users that contain Lotus Notes data in original hierarchy and formatting into which these files are maintained in NSF file.
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The utility is also used to transfer Notes data in Live Exchange Server using Business and Enterprise license.
Additionally, it is a Windows based utility that supports all Lotus Notes editions to migrate data in Outlook PST.