Make Outlook Appointments Private by Default

All appointments and meetings I create in Outlook are Private, by default. How can I turn this off? If I want something to be private, I will set it to Private myself.

What your default sensitivity set to?

In Outlook 2010 or Outlook 2013, check your Sensitivity settings in File, Options, Email. In older versions of Outlook, it's in Tools, Options, Email Options, Advanced.

Default sensitivity option

Even though the sensitivity options are under Mail, the sensitivity setting applies to Appointments, Contacts, and Tasks too.

Make individual items private

If you want to set individual items to Private, click the Private icon in Appointment, Contact, or Task forms.


In Email, Sensitivity options are in Properties (or Options) dialog. Click the expand icon to display the dialog.


More Information

Other things that would set items private include using a custom form that has the private flag enabled or using a third party utility that sets the sensitivity level.

To quickly change turn Private off or on for many items, use a group by view and drag between groups. See How to Easily Change the Private Flag

Published June 9, 2014. Last reviewed on July 14, 2014.

  • Karen

    I'm having the same problem with new appointments and meetings having a default sensitivity level of Private. I followed your instructions, and the default sensitivity level is already set to Normal. This only happens with calendar items, not with email messages. I don't have any third-party add-ins, but I found that my calendar items are using a custom form called "Appointment-Private" that has the sensitivity level set to Private. I tried using the "Choose Form" option to hopefully find a normal calendar form, but the only form available under Calendar was the Appointment-Private custom form. Can you tell me how to get a normal sensitivity form for appointments and meetings set up as a default? Thanks very much!

  • D Poremsky

    Right click on the Calendar folder, choose Properties. In the When posting to this folder dropdown, is IPM.Appointment listed? If so, select it and Apply.

    If you don't have an IPM.Appointment, you'll need to publish a form that does not have private set. (I'm guessing it uses script to set the private flag if everything looks normal.)

  • Jon C

    I was looking for a solution to the same "sensitivity" meeting notice default setting, and this worked for me (selected "New Meeting" in the pulldown under the Calendar Folder's properties dialogue box). I hade both a "private appointment" and "new meeting" icon in the meeting window ribbon, and both default to "normal" sensitivity. I think before Office 2013, I could have both options (normal and private), and now they are both one or the other. Either way, it is better for me to make this change and just select Private when I reallyneed it. Thank You D.P. and Karen!