ProtonMail Bridge: use ProtonMail accounts in desktop clients


ProtonMail Bridge is a standalone program for Windows, Linux and Macintosh devices to integrate ProtonMail accounts into desktop email clients.

The client runs in the background on the system to encrypt and decrypt emails for use in third-party clients. Setup requires installation and configuration of the ProtonMail Bridge client on the system and configuration of the desktop email client to integrate the ProtonMail account.

ProtonMail Bridge should work with all desktop clients; the company has published guides for Thunderbird and Outlook 2010/2013/2016, as well as Apple Mail on Mac OS X.

Note: The application is only available for paid accounts.

install add account

First thing that needs to be done is download the latest version of ProtonMail Bridge to the local system. Install the program and run it afterward to start the configuration.

Complete the following steps in order to add a new ProtonMail account to the Bridge application:

  1. Select “Add Account” in the program interface.
  2. Type your username and on the next screen the account password.
  3. The account should now be successfully connected. The default mode is combined address mode which means that all emails from all ProtonMail addresses will be sent and received together.
  4. You can switch modes with a click on “address configuration”.
  5. Credentials for adding IMAP and SMPT settings to the desktop email client are provided by the application.
  6. Just add a new account in the email client of your choice to use the ProtonMail account in that email client. As an example, here is the guide for Thunderbird on Windows.

Bridge functions as a local Mail server that ProtonMail flows through once configured. The client decrypts and encrypts the data locally and in the background.

It is important to note that ProtonMail emails are readable in the email client. System encryption, e.g. by using VeraCrypt full system encryption, or other security protections need to be used to protect the data against third-parties.

Closing Words

ProtonMail customers who prefer to use a local email client may use ProtonMail Bridge to integrate their addresses into the local client. Setup is straightforward and should not be difficult, even for inexperienced users.

Now You: Which email provider / program do you use?

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