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Emails are the most common threat vector for online security attacks. Hosted spam filtering solutions detect spam and prevent malicious emails from ever entering an organization’s network.
Managing and dealing with spam/unwanted emails can cost organizations hundreds of hours each year in lost productivity. Phishing and malware attacks can provide cybercriminals with access to an organization’s entire network and to sensitive company data.
Organizations and Managed Service Providers (MSPs) need to have spam filtering solutions in place that filter both inbound and outbound email to prevent spam and malicious emails entering and leaving the business, keeping users and data safe from attack.
Malicious emails are increasing significantly in 2021 and cybercriminals are becoming highly sophisticated in their approach.
In order to protect their networks and servers, many organizations are mandating their employees to conduct cybersecurity awareness courses to better understand both the dangers posed by malicious emails and what to look out for in a phishing attack. Phishing emails, however, can be extremely convincing in nature and hackers are continually using a range of highly sophisticated techniques to hoodwink employees into granting them access to sensitive information. One successful attack can provide a gateway into a business’s/MSP’s entire network, placing sensitive data such as business reports and account information at the mercy of cybercriminals.
So while security courses are definitely beneficial, they should only be used as one aspect of an organizations’ full defence toolkit against online threats, and as a supplement to implementing a hosted spam filtering solution – which is a necessity for organizations looking to protect their users and network.
Organizations, however, need to choose a hosted spam filtering solution carefully. While the traditional email service providers such as Gmail, Yahoo and Outlook do contain spam filters to detect inbound spam, they only manage known threats identified from blacklists, and these traditional spam filters are not a substantial line of defence for MSPs and organizations with lots of email traffic.
Some traditional filters go further and incorporate more sophisticated content analysis – such as Bayesian analysis to calculate the likelihood of spam from unknown senders based on an email’s content – however the overall level of sophistication in these spam filters is still lacking.
Traditional spam filters can typically block up to 97% of spam. For organizations dealing with low volumes of inbound and outbound email, this rate may be acceptable. However, for most organizations, the 3% of spam that remains undetected can be a huge issue – with large implications in terms of lost productivity, increased susceptibility to phishing attacks and the added risk potential for malware to enter the business´s network.
To provide full protection, organizations and MSPs need to look at implementing a hosted spam filtering solution to fully defend against both known and unknown threats.
The best hosted spam filtering solutions go further than traditional email filters by offering techniques such as greylisting and sandboxing to identify and inspect emails from previously unknown spam sources or from new threats – in addition to protecting from known unwanted senders.
Greylisting blocks every inbound email for detection purposes. If the mail is legitimate, the sending server will be instructed to re-send and the mail will be accepted. As spammers´ servers are too busy sending out new spam emails, the request to re-send will be ignored.
Sandboxing is another key feature of hosted spam filtering that provides an isolated test environment on a network to inspect incoming suspicious files or code, so that they don’t cause damage to the host system or network.
Hosted spam filtering software with these types of features detect over 99% of spam email. This higher detection rate can result in thousands of dollars being saved in lost productivity, and a significant reduction in the potential for malicious emails to enter an organization’s network.
The threats associated with inbound emails are well documented. However organizations also need to scan all outbound email leaving the business.
Hackers are increasingly using sophisticated approaches and techniques to compromise business email servers and to send spam/phishing mails using employee email accounts. This can lead to the organization’s IP address being blacklisted as a known spam server, preventing future genuine emails originating from the organization from being delivered.
If emails containing phishing links or malicious malware emails are sent from your organization’s server, either inadvertently or due to a compromised server, it can result in your organization’s credibility and reputation being destroyed, as well as costing thousands in repairs.
Implementing a hosted spam filtering solution is a necessity for organizations with large email traffic. So what steps do organizations need to take?
Signing up for a hosted spam filter is simple. Once an account is created - by adding the organization’s domain and a domain administrator – the organization will be connected to the service provider´s servers by redirecting their MX records. All incoming mail will pass through the hosted spam filtering provider’s servers and will be filtered according to the policies created by the domain administrator.
Scheduled reports will be sent to each user when mail is quarantined by the hosted spam filtering software. Domain administrators can easily monitor the volumes of spam emails being detected, quarantined and rejected in real time (via a portal) or historically (via customizable reports).
SpamTitan is a robust and highly effective hosted spam filter - using a range of mechanisms to check all incoming email for a host of spam signatures - that blocks spam at a rate of 99.97%. Dual antivirus protection is provided by Bitdefender and ClamAV to protect servers and networks against phishing attempts and malware. SpamTitan includes Bayesian analysis, greylisting and sandboxing, among a number of front-end tests to maximize spam detection. Multiple web authentication settings and recipient verification types provide domain administrators with flexibility over how they wish to apply spam filtering parameters.
SpamTitan hosted Spam Filter also scans all outbound email for spam and malware - reducing the potential of an organization’s IP being blacklisted.
SpamTitan is available in a choice of deployment options. In addition to providing a cloud-hosted service, SpamTitan offers business´s a Gateway on-premises spam filtering service that can be installed seamlessly into a physical or virtual infrastructure. A cluster option is also available, along with the possibility for SpamTitan´s hosted spam filtering software to be hosted in a private cloud – an ideal solution for MSP.
Despite the comprehensive suite of features, SpamTitan is remarkably easy to use and only takes a few minutes to get up and running. SpamTitan is universally compatible with all operating systems and there are no limits to the number of users or domains. SpamTitan ensures full email continuity in the event of downtime or a server outage.
SpamTitan is also available in white label format for MSPs.
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