Important Note: If you are still using Outlook Express, I urge you to migrate to another safer email program. There are several email programs that are free and will not cause as many problems as Outlook Express. A popular replacement for Outlook Express is Thunderbird.
Outlook Express is the email client that was included with Windows starting with Windows 95 and ending with Windows XP. Because it was included with Windows, it is still one of the most widely used email program for Windows XP users. Although many experienced email users prefer to use another third party email client, just about everyone has used it at one time or another. I liked Outlook Express. It didn't have all of the features that I would have liked, (no email program does) but it worked very well for me. Please be aware, I no longer use Outlook Express, so no Outlook Express pages will be updated except for possible security issues and/or help links.
Because Outlook Express was used by more folks than any other email program, it was the target for all kinds of malware writers including virus writers. However, if Outlook Express was configured for safety, it was about as safe as any other email program, or at least it used to be. Notice I said 'If'. Unfortunately, most people don't configure for safety. Either they don't know how (Explained on OE Settings) or they want all of the 'bells and whistles' that preclude safe email settings.
When Outlook Express is configured for safety, it poses no more of a security risk than any other email client. There are those who will disagree with me, but I used Outlook Express for a long time and was never compromised by using it.
A few things of note, you do have to keep your Windows updated with the critical updates, use a firewall, never click on links, delete SPAM unopened and above all, keep an updated virus scanner running at all times!
One other thing about Outlook Express (and nearly any other email client), you need to perform regular maintenance to keep it running smooth!
The menu on the left for outlook Express may help you if you are having problems or just want to learn something about Outlook Express.
Windows Vista still has a slightly different version of Outlook Express named Windows Mail. It is mostly the same with some minor differences and one major change, the removal of one of the best features, Identities. Windows 7 users need to download an email program, I suggest Windows Live Mail 2011.
Outlook Express does seem to become unstable after a number of years and some folks have recently complained about emails disappearing. Since Microsoft is no longer supporting Outlook Express it may be time to tell our old favorite Outlook Express goodbye and get a newer more stable email program. Some choices are located here.