Microsoft Outlook is one of the most popular and dynamic email application. This email program is being used extensively by both small-scale and large-scale organization. Its proprietary file format is PST which saves entire data items like emails, contacts, tasks, etc. On the other hand, the OST file is also created by MS Outlook to store copies of emails from the Exchange Server.
Then What Exactly is MSG File?
Apart from PST and OST files, MS Outlook stores data in MSG file format. MSG file is created simply by dragging and dropping the Outlook’s mailbox items to the desktop such as emails, contacts, calendars, tasks, journals, etc. MSG File format allows the sharing of individual email messages without providing the entire mailbox data. This will help to preserve the secrecy of the email data by sharing a single message instead of the entire mailbox data. An MSG file contains plain ASCII text for the headers, main message body, attachments, and hyperlinks. Generally, the MSG file is exported to archive the data for future usage or to scan the malware.
MSG file specifies five storage elements and each one represents components of the message object. The storage elements are:
- Recipient object storage
- Attachment object storage
- Embedded Message object storage
- Custom attachment storage
- Named property mapping storage
Let’s consider a case scenario to understand the need in a broader picture!
I am an email forensic expert having vast years of experience. I have been associated with one of the well-known investigation agencies. So now, I have assigned to examine MSG files, which was found and gathered from the crime case. However, due to time constraints, it is not viable to install a supported email application to analyze the MSG files. Thus, could someone assist me with some proven yet effective solution to perform MSG file forensics? Anticipating an instant response.
Now, the question crops up?
How to Examine MSG Files Without Outlook?
In order to analyze the Outlook MSG file for forensic investigation, one needs to have the default email application i.e., Outlook installed on the system. Without this, it is not possible to view nor examine the suspected MSG files.
Then, what could be a feasible solution? Read on to know the hassle-free solution!
Discover the Effortless Solution to Analyze MSG File Instantly
If you are undergoing a similar problem as mentioned in the above case scenario. Then, there is nothing to panic! All you need to do is seek help from some proficient email examination software. However, finding the best software out of the numerous tools to meet your email forensic demands is a matter of challenge. Therefore, to make your search simple, here we are going to introduce the best ever Email Forensic Software i.e., MailXaminer.
The software work wonders making the email investigation process simple without facing any hurdle. The software is designed in a simplified user interface thereby enabling users with less technical expertise to smoothly examine the email data files. Besides this, one can make use of various advanced options such as powerful search options, geolocation mapping, etc.
Hovering to know how does the tool works to seamlessly analyze Outlook MSG files? Check out the upcoming section.
Extraction and Analysis of Evidence from Outlook MSG File Format
One can efficiently examine the MSG file format using MailXaminer software. The best part of the software is that there is no requirement of installing any external applications. As a result, in the case of examining MSG files, users need not have to install the supported email client such as Microsoft Outlook.
Step-by-Step Guide to Examine Outlook MSG Files Flawlessly
Step 1: Add MSG File
Using the Add Evidence button upload the MSG files. Then, from the Add File window, choose MSG(*.msg) and browse the suspect MSG data file
Step 2: Scan MSG File
Once the file is added, the software will scan the uploaded MSG file. One can view the scan status as shown in the below image. After the scanning gets successfully completed, click View to proceed further
Step 3: Preview Files
The software will preview the entire MSG files, once the file gets scanned
Step 4: Advanced Search Options
One can avail of different search options from the software panel. This option helps the investigators to search the suspected emails out of the bulk MSG files. The various search options rendered by the utility include General Search, Proximity Search, Regular Expression, Stem Search, Fuzzy Search, and Wildcard Search
Step 5: Multiple Preview Options
Users can view the email header in detail by right-clicking the suspected email messages and selecting the Preview option. With this, one can avail of 7+ preview options as shown in the below image
Step 6: Export Options
Investigators can export the suspected MSG files in a court-admissible file format like PDF. Moreover, the software offers multiple export file formats such as EML, HTML, PST, etc.
Step 7: Export Completed
Once the export process gets completes, the status for the same will be shown as given in the below screenshot.
That’s all! You have instantly examined suspected MSG files with the least time using MailXaminer!
MSG is the file extension used by Microsoft Outlook to store single email messages out of the Outlook’s personal storage database. It is also a reliable format to securely share individual email messages instead of the entire mailbox. In the case of examining the MSG file for forensic investigation purposes, it is highly suggested to avail MailXaminer. The software is exclusively designed to examine emails from various email applications.