Importing Contacts into ProtonMail

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In ProtonMail v1.11 and up, we support the importing of your existing email contacts from other email service providers (ESPs).

The process takes just a few minutes and is outlined here:

Gmail

1. Log in to Gmail.
2. Go to the “Contacts” page.

import_contacts1
Click the “Gmail dropdown” button right above the “Compose” button. Choose “Contacts” from the dropdown menu.

3. Click “Export”.

import_contacts2
On the Contacts page, click the “more” button. Choose “Export” from the dropdown menu.

4. Choose a format.

import_contacts3
Choose the format you want to export. We recommend Outlook format.

Once you have exported your contacts to a file, visit your ProtonMail Contacts page to import your contacts.

We only have a guide for Gmail for now. We will update this post with additional ESP later.

About the Author

Jason Stockman

Jason is the Co-Founder of ProtonMail. He works on building ProtonMail's webmail interface and front-end encryption. Jason has 10+ years experience building websites and applications.

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30 comments on “Importing Contacts into ProtonMail

  • I already emailed you all, but thought I’d post my issues here as well in case others are having the same problem.

    Exporting a google file (.csv) won’t upload on Protonmail for me. Instead I exported in vCard format but when I tried to upload, only the A’s in my address book would show up and only the first 20 A names.

    So at this point, I’m still unable to bulk upload my contacts.

    Reply
  • The number of contacts to be uploaded from Gmail seems to be limited.
    Is it correct? (I could import 114 contacts on a total of 750).
    Is it possible to import all contacts?
    Thank you for your kind response.

    Reply
    • We recently improved our import contacts features, if you try again, it might be possible to import more contacts now. Sometimes, contacts cannot be imported because of formatting issues.

      Reply
  • I’ve tried to import individually and in bulk both .vcf and .csv files through the “Upload Contacts” button and have not been able to import a single name.

    Reply
  • Here’s how the CSV-Upload/Import currently works:

    Apparently, the CSV can only have two fields, and they HAVE to be Name and E-mail Address. Otherwise the csv will not work. So open excel and get your csv to look like this:

    Name,E-mail Address
    First1 Name1,name1@mail.com
    First2 Name2,name2@mail.com
    First3 Name3,name3@mail.com
    First4 Name4,name4@mail.com
    First5 Name5,name5@mail.com

    And it will work.

    Reply
  • I tried to import my Mac Address Book. It worked only partially.

    Firstly, I opened the Contacts app on my Mac and exported all contacts (Select All/Export vCard.) Then I uploaded that file to Protonmail. It worked smoothly, no error messages appeared and indeed some of my contacts were imported succesfully. One third approx. I have no idea why the other 2/3 were not imported, I cannot see a pattern as to which ones were imported and which ones were not.

    Any ideas or suggestions are welcome. I’ll also send this to support for their opinion.

    Reply
  • Had some problems importing; it seemed to truncate the file and only import some of the contacts. Also, problems with some Chinese Unicode characters (perhaps this is related to the truncation issues, as I see mentioned problems with Cyrillic above). I have quite a few contacts with Chinese language information.

    Reply
  • Since the original blog entry only describes the process for GMail, I’ve been trying to import my Hotmail/ MSN Outlook contacts into Protonmail.
    It worked flawlessly, but does require some work. Here is what I did:

    [1] Go into your Hotmail/ MSN Outlook account as you always do.
    [2] Go to your Contacts page. This may be a bit hard to find, but in the top left corner of your screen, next to “Outlook.com”, you’ll see a square icon, existing out of 9 individual squares (for the old timers and nerds among us, a Rubiks Cube like icon 😉
    [3] Click this icon. An overlay window will open.
    [4] Select People
    [5] A new page, named Contacts will open
    [6] From the top pull down menu “Manage”, select “Export for Outlook.com and other services”
    [7] This will download a .csv file that holds all your Hotmail/ Outlook contacts.
    [8] After downloading the file, open it with your prefered speadsheet editor. If necessary: tick that the file is comma seperated, and the text delimiter is ” (i.e. quotes).
    [9] After you opened the file, you’ll see that the file/ Hotmail/ Outlook contacts hold A LOT OF INFORMATION. Probably most collums will have no info (unless you’ve been very, very busy). Tthe collumn headers are:
    Title First Name Middle Name Last Name Suffix Given Name Yomi Family Name Yomi Home Street Home City Home State Home Postal Code Home Country Company Department Job Title Office Location Business Street Business City Business State Business Postal Code Business Country Other Street Other City Other State Other Postal Code Other Country Assistant’s Phone Business Fax Business Phone Business Phone 2 Callback Car Phone Company Main Phone Home Fax Home Phone Home Phone 2 ISDN Mobile Phone Other Fax Other Phone Pager Primary Phone Radio Phone TTY/TDD Phone Telex Anniversary Birthday E-mail Address E-mail Type E-mail 2 Address E-mail 2 Type E-mail 3 Address E-mail 3 Type Notes Spouse Web Page

    [10] Delete the collums you don’t need. You do have to keep: First Name, Last Name, E-mail Address.
    [11] IMPORTANT – UPON IMPORT PROTON MAIL WILL IGNORE ADDIONAL EMAIL ADDRESSES YOU MIGHT HAVE! So that means if you leave the collums E-mail 2 Address and E-mail 3 Address these will NOT imported. For that you’ve to create a new row with the data in it. ProtonMail will merge the fields First Name and Last Name automagically and list it in the Name field.
    [12] After you cleaned up your csv file, save it (as .csv of course), log into ProtonMail, and import them by selecting Upload Contacts under Contacts, and drag & dropping them on the interaction window.

    This worked for me, importing almost 700 contacts. Good luck!

    Reply
  • I believe that the following format will work for any properly constructed .csv file:

    The header must be in the following format with the quotation marks:

    “Name”,”E-mail Address”

    followed by appropriate data entries:

    Joan Smith,joansmith@joanie.com

    I noted that many .csv export files do not contain quotation marks in the header; it is not hard to edit your exported file to change the header (or add it) appropriately using any text editor such as Notebook or Gedit.

    Reply
  • Nothing is working. Any ideas. I used Excel to create the CSV.

    My header is “name”,”email address”

    My data is first last, email

    “Invalid Format”

    Please help

    Reply
  • Hello! 🙂

    I have imported my contacts but is there anyway of accessing them in the ‘groups’ I use in Gmail??
    I really don’t want to have to go through them one by one and retag/ group….!

    Thanks

    Reply
  • My 1,400 contacts are all in Apple Contacts, not Google. Any easy way to import my Contacts directly from Apple Contacts into ProtonMail?

    Grateful for any help.

    Reply
  • before initiating contacts upload are there issues or limits with Apple product usage, or does Proton work with PC or Mac use with equal facility?

    Reply