How to register PEC: Have you decided to open a certified e-mail account and would like some information on how to proceed? No problem, I’m here to help you out. The PEC (acronym for certified e-mail) is a tool that allows you to exchange e-mails with the same legal value as a registered letter with return receipt and to be sure of the identity of the sender and recipient. It can be used by companies, private citizens and public administration bodies and does not require any particular device to function.
To create a certified e-mail address, it is sufficient to register on the site of one of the many operators that offer this type of service, provide a copy of your identity document (to be sent via Internet or fax, depending on the methods provided by the manager) , sign some documents (also to be sent via Internet or fax) and pay the annual fee foreseen by the selected offer. The annual cost of the service can vary from less than 10 euros to over 70, depending on the functions and features provided by the plan selected for your PEC. Unfortunately, there are no 100% free PEC services, while it is possible to find plans that provide a few months of free trial before paying the annual fee.
Private citizens are not obliged to open a PEC account. Different speech must be made for companies and sole proprietorships which, on the other hand, are obliged to have a PEC address and to register it in the Register of Companies (another procedure that can be completed quite easily and quickly). So far all clear? Well, then I’d say move on to the more practical side of the matter by seeing how to register PEC and how to use your own certified e-mail address on PC, smartphone and tablet.
How to register PEC account
As already mentioned above, to create a PEC account all you have to do is connect to the website of a manager (i.e. an authorized company that offers the certified mail service), choose one of the available offers and fill in a short module online.
Once you have completed filling out the form, you have to pay the annual fee of your PEC account (unless the plan you have chosen does not include a free trial period) and you must send all the Required documentation: usually it is a copy of a valid identity document and some documents to be signed. The documentation can be sent via browser, by email or by fax, according to the methods envisaged by each operator. The activation times for the PEC mailbox after sending the requested documentation are extremely fast.
The prices of the PEC boxes, as already mentioned, can go from less than 10 euros / year to over 70 euros / year. It all depends on the amount of space offered for storing emails and attachments, on the destination of the account (personal or professional) and on the accessory services present in the latter: SMS alerts, security archive, access via smartphone app, custom domain etc.
Unfortunately, free PEC services no longer exist. Until 2014 there was the Posta Certificat @ service that allowed you to create a PEC account and communicate with the Public Administration, but due to its lack of success it was closed.
How to use the PEC
After registering the PEC, to use your certified mailbox, all you have to do is connect to the manager’s website and log in with your account credentials (if this requires access via Web Mail ) or configure your email client with the IMAP parameters provided by the manager.
In short: as you have surely guessed, for the end user the functioning of the PEC is practically identical to that of traditional e-mail boxes, such as Gmail or Outlook. The whole part relating to the certification of messages takes place “behind the scenes” and users do not have to do anything. To simplify the concept as much as possible, when you send a message via PEC (from PEC to PEC), the email is taken over by your manager who checks the message, checks if it complies with all the technical standards required by the certified mail service and, if successful, validates it. Once validated, the message passes to the recipient’s manager, who performs a second verification of the email and, if successful, delivers it to the end user.
The process of validating and sending messages takes a few seconds. Its outcome is reported to users with notifications that arrive via email. This means that, for example, when you send a message via PEC, you will receive two notifications: one relating to theacceptance of the message by the recipient manager and one relating to the delivery of the message to the latter.
Another important thing to underline is that the PEC requires neither special hardware devices (eg smart cards, USB sticks, etc.) nor software other than the classic e-mail clients available on computers, smartphones or tablets. There are official apps of the various PEC managers (eg Aruba), but their use is not mandatory if you configure a third-party client with the correct IMAP parameters.
Now you know how to register a PEC account and what it takes to use it. Let me point you out some of the best offers that the operators for certified mail currently offer in their price lists.
Aruba is one of the most important managers for the PEC. Its offers are very cheap and are aimed at both private citizens and professionals.
- PEC Standard – for 5 euros + VAT per year it offers a 1GB PEC mailbox with antivirus, antispam and access via Web and smartphone app included.
- PEC Pro – for 25 euros + VAT per year it offers a 2GB mailbox with 3GB of archive, notification via SMS, antivirus and antispam.
- PEC Premium – for 40 euros + VAT per year it offers a 2GB mailbox with 8GB of archive, SMS notifications, antivirus and antispam.
To configure the Aruba PEC in your favorite mail client, follow the instructions in my tutorial on how to configure Aruba PEC.
Although as a manager he is less well known than Aruba, KOLST proposes equally valid offers for the certified e-mail.
- Easy – for 5 euros + VAT per year it offers a 1GB mailbox on the peceasy.com or peceasy.it domain with unlimited sending, antivirus, email notifications, the ability to receive emails from non-certified accounts and access via Web Mail.
- Pro – for 10 euros + VAT per year it offers all the advantages of the Easy plan plus 5GB of storage, a custom domain and a control panel for mailboxes.
- Super – for 20 euros + VAT per year it offers all the advantages of the Pro plan plus the receipt of notifications via SMS.
To configure the PEC of KOLST in your e-mail client, use the IMAP parameters you find in this web page (by clicking on the item I have to configure the boxes in my program. What are your mail servers for the certified e-mail?).
Postecert is the certified mail service of Poste Italiane. Its rates are very affordable.
- PEC Base – for 5.50 euros + VAT per year, it offers a 100MB mailbox with 200 mailings per day on the postecert.it domain
- PEC Business – offers five mailboxes with 1GB of space and 200 daily mailings on postacert.it and pcert.postecert.it domains. It has variable costs.
If you want to configure the PEC of Poste Italiane in your favorite e-mail client, use the IMAP parameters you find here.
LegalMail is one of the few managers that allow you to open a certified mailbox with a free trial period. Its prices are on average higher than those of other operators as it is aimed mainly at professional users. These are its most interesting offers.
- PEC Bronze – for 25 euros + VAT per year it offers a 5GB mailbox with security archive, SMS notifications and access from a mobile device. You can’t try it for free.
- PEC Silver – for 39 euros + VAT per year with the first 6 months of free trial, it offers an 8GB mailbox with security archive, SMS notifications and mobile access.
- PEC Gold – for 75 euros + VAT per year it offers a 15GB mailbox with security archive, SMS notifications and access from a mobile device. You can’t try it for free.
To configure the PEC of LegalMail in your e-mail client, use the parameters you find on the site of the operator.
Register.it is another provider that allows you to try out its certified mail services at no cost. These are its most interesting offers.
- PEC Agile – for 33.90 euros + VAT per year it offers a 2GB mailbox, notifications via SMS, mobile access and attachments up to 30MB. You can try it for free for 6 months (with 9.90 euros of setup costs, in case of non-renewal).
- Single certified e-mail – for 43 euros / year it offers a 3 or 5GB mailbox, mobile access, notifications via SMS and attachments up to 30MB. There is no free trial period.
To configure Register.it’s PEC in your e-mail client, use the IMAP parameters you find here.
Libero Mail PEC
Libero Mail PEC is the Libero certified certified e-mail service. It is not among the cheapest ever, but it is very valid and offers solutions suitable for both individuals and professionals.
- Family PEC – for 9.89 euros / year it offers a 1GB mailbox for personal use.
- PEC mail – for 25 euros + VAT per year, it offers a box with no fixed storage limits to be used for professional purposes.
To configure Libero PEC in your e-mail client, use the parameters you find here.
Virgilio PEC is a service that has two floors: Personal from 14.99 euros / year with 1GB of space e Infinity from 30 euros + VAT / year with unlimited space. More info here.
Register certified e-mail for companies
Starting from 30 June 2013, all companies must register a valid PEC address with the Business Register. If you have a company or a sole proprietorship and you want to know how to register PEC in the Register of Companies, linked to RegistroImprese.it and follow the instructions on this site.
Going into more detail, if you are the owner of the company and have a digital signature (which is quite different from the PEC), you can register your PEC address in the Business Register by filling in a specific online form and attaching all the required documentation.