WinZip Computings namesake product is one of the most popular utilities in computing history. The company is now building on its reputation with WinZip Companion for Outlook 1.0, an add-on that makes it easy for Microsoft Outlook users to zip and encrypt attachments in outgoing e-mail messages.
Released last month, WinZip Companion for Outlook is for Outlook 2000 and later and cannot be used with Outlook Express. A single-user license costs $19, and volume licensing is available.
Here at eWEEK, I attach the multiple Microsoft Word documents that make up a review to e-mails that are sent to and from my Labs colleagues and editors. Using WinZip Companion for Outlook lets users like me save a considerable amount of space when e-mailing attachments, while keeping like documents grouped together. In my tests, I reduced an e-mail message with eight attached Word documents from 256KB to 58KB using the tool.
One thing users should be aware of, however, is that some organizations may block .zip attachments to avoid viruses.
WinZip Companion for Outlook can be configured to automatically zip attachments or to prompt users to manually zip attachments when composing e-mail. I could also manually zip and attach files within Outlook.
One element I like is WinZip Companion for Outlooks support for 128-bit and 256-bit AES, in addition to the less secure Zip 2.0 encryption scheme. Advanced AES is FIPS-197-certified by the National Institute of Standards and Technology and has been approved as the standard for U.S. government and private data encryption.
More information about WinZip Companion for Outlook is available at www.winzip.com.