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How keeping email secure in the Cloud is easier.

In the not too distant past, before there was so much criminal hacking and fraud, managing email was not so complicated. Now it has become a complex beast that demands constant attention, time, and money. Spam is a headache for both users
and administrators, plus it exposes the business to the security risks associated with phishing. Outsourcing the filtering portion of your email architecture frees you from doing that and improves security for your organization.

Anti-spam and email security solutions are now essentials pieces in any IT toolbox. There are many excellent on premises anti- spam and spam filtering solutions available, however managing these on-site presents an additional burden for the IT staff, as their consistent smooth operation is dependent on many factors outside their control. “Outsourcing the filtering portion of your email architecture frees you from doing that and improves security for your organization.”

What happens when there’s a network outage or an email server failure?

What happens when users can’t access their work email, because the mail server is offline? The cloud provides redundancy and queuing for that and failover. Fortunately there is an easy way to manage all of this: move peripheral email tasks like anti-spam and anti-malware filtering to the cloud. Your current vendor may even have a cloud anti-spam solution ready for you to investigate.

Businesses are constantly looking for better alternatives and are moving towards hosted cloud services for anti-spam filtering. Modern email systems have embraced this hybrid model by making easy the interconnection with third-party party anti-spam services, anti-virus gateways, email archiving systems, encryption, and more. A cloud-based service helps the overworked and underappreciated IT admin by freeing him or her from ensuring that email and spam filters are kept up-to-date and searching for lost emails in the quarantine folder in the case of false positives.

“Cloud anti-spam solutions are an efficient and effective weapon in the fight against spam while reducing complexity and management requirements.”

First Steps – some things to consider when selecting a Hosted Service for Managing Email in the Cloud

Cloud computing is the most talked about concept in IT now. It’s the lowest cost way of operating an IT shop. It lets you build the best possible systems by plugging in differing offerings from different vendors. This increases security, reliability, and easy-of-use. Research shows that cloud computing will increase 35% in 2014. Most of this envisions a hybrid architecture. When a business decides to move cloud projects forward, determining where to start and choosing a suitable services provider are the first steps.

How Companies can determine where to start and which cloud vendor to pick. Businesses are pressing their IT staff to move to the cloud for cost reasons, but IT want to maintain in-house control over certain applications, particularly email. The best solution is a mixed solution. Technical visionaries in Silicon Valley refer to this as the API Economy. That means you use whatever API is best suited for the task.

“Cloud anti-spam frees up I.T. staff time from updating anti-virus and anti-spam definitions and restarting and recovering email if there is an outage.“

For email, the de facto standard remains Microsoft Exchange and Active Directory. But filtering spam is not a core Exchange function. For that, is it best to tap into a cloud- based anti-spam engine. Cloud anti-spam frees up I.T. staff time from updating anti-virus and anti-spam definitions and restarting and recovering email if there is an outage. Yet IT retains the ability to maintain whitelists and blacklists and email filtering rules that are particular to the organization.
Doing all of that in-house would require hiring more administrators and skilled and expensive IT staff with knowledge in this area. Moving those functions to the cloud frees up those expensive IT resources to focus on the unique needs of your business and the other applications that you use and maintain.

You’ve made the decision to move email filtering to the Cloud – What next?

Once you have made the decision to move email filtering and antivirus protection to the cloud, the next decision is which cloud service provider to pick. You need a provider who has displayed competency with email management and offers a robust and feature- rich product. The migration should be transparent for the end user in areas such as accessing quarantined email.
Another important criteria is ease of setup. Using the new service should be a simple matter of pointing your email server to the anti-spam engine and then going there to configure company-specific filtering rules you already have or simply uploading them.The anti-spam engine should allow you to configure the global blacklist and whitelist, import certificates for TLS encryption, and assign administrators, roles, and groups.
“The anti-spam engine should allow you to configure the global blacklist and whitelist, import certificates for TLS encryption, and assign administrators, roles, and groups.“
6 Reasons to Consider Cloud Anti-spam

1. You will get the latest and best technology via the Cloud
A good cloud based spam filtering service provider will use many different systems across various geographically dispersed data centres providing you with maximum reliability and scalability. This redundancy reduces potential failures plus it gives you
access the most up-to-date technologies available.

“The cloud anti-spam provider can handles spikes in spam volume or new threat variants better than any in-house solution.“
The cloud anti-spam provider can handles spikes in spam volume or new threat variants better than any in-house solution. Cloud providers process enormous amounts of email. As they do so, their intelligent filters are continuously learning and therefore
providing increasingly accurate spam filtering.

Companies that focus on one area tend do a better than someone who is handling many disparate tasks. The anti-spam cloud vendor is thinking about how to prevent spam all day every day. They use the latest and best technologies monitored by security experts who specialize in that. That reduces the risk to your organization, by keeping your email clear of spam and email threats. Because you connect to their system by a simple IP address, there is no tight integration,
meaning the cloud vendor is constantly improving the system without causing any interruption to your services and changes to your system. Continuously updated protection stops spam and threats before they reach you.

2. Email continuity
Email is the engine of productivity, and downtime directly impacts the bottom line. SaaS Email Protection and Continuity gives you peace of mind that your employees can remain productive during email server outages with continuous email storage, access, and use. With a proper queuing mechanism, if you lose network connectivity, emails are not lost but kept in a queue. While the network is down, you can access and view these via a web based portal.

3. Inbound and outbound spam filtering
It is important that both inbound and outbound email is filtered for spam. Many organisations don’t realise the importance of outbound filtering. The failure to do that can cause your domain to get blacklisted, causing you to have spend time consulting
with SpamHaus and others to get your domain back online.
“Many organisations don’t realise the importance of outbound filtering.“ The second reason for filtering outbound email is security. If computers attached to your network have been hacked, they can be used to send company data out the door. At worst
case, you could find that your computers have been turned into a proxy for organized crime, as some of your PCs have been incorporated into a botnet. That could put your company's reputation at risk and expose your business to expensive and time consuming litigation.

4. Email Digests for Users and Administrators
Your cloud anti-spam provider should provide quarantine reports and digests for both the administrator and end users. The administrator needs to be able to view all senders and recipients for all emails that are in the quarantine, so they can check for false positives and then modify the filters themselves or ask the cloud provider to do that. When viewing their quarantine reports, end users should see a summary of all blocked or suspected spam messages and be able to add false positives to a whitelist and release them from quarantine with just one click.

5. Cloud anti-spam can save you time and money
Moving to a cloud anti-spam solution saves money on hardware, software, and maintenance. Plus it reduces staffing costs as the cloud provider both is responsible for patching the system and can by definition manage more servers more efficiently that you, due to the economies of scale.

“A cloud anti-spam solution saves money on hardware, software,and maintenance.“
There is no up capital expenditure with a cloud-based solution as it is subscription-based. With Cloud it is also easier for companies to scale up or down as your staffing levels change and be able to correlate extra headcount to the increase in administrative costs.
6. Reduce the load on your mail servers
Moving to a cloud anti-spam service saves email server resources. The email server is freed of the burden of running filters, executing DNS queries, and checking whitelists and black lists. Using a cloud anti-spam solution means that your servers receive only clean email as the cloud service provider handles all of that.  We are now offering the powerful anti-spam technology of SpamTitan via the Cloud. SpamTitan Cloud is a no-maintenance solution that delivers continuous protection to
stop spam, phishing, and malware before they reach your network. SpamTitan Cloud protects Microsoft Exchange, GoogleApps, Microsoft Office 365, as well as a range of other hosted and on-premise email solutions.

“Implementing SpamTitan Cloud is a simple, quick process that allows you to increase your network protection with immediate effect.”

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