Old or young, many people put together a Dear Santa letter and wish list this time of year. For some, that list includes exotic vacations and jewelry; for others it may include the latest technology gadgets or video games. At St. Bernard, rather than asking the question of what do you want under the tree, we wonder what would be on many businesses’ wish lists for Santa if the jolly elf also had a hand in email security; particularly those that may not have the level of protection that we offer. Here is the letter that we think many would write:
At this time of year as we are all enjoying the festivities of the season and scrambling to find that perfect gift for that perfect someone, we have time to stop and reflect about all that we are thankful for. Now, within our own company, we are not asking for a lot during this season of giving. The economy appears to be bouncing back in multiple sectors, and there is certainly some optimism among our customers and partners for the near future. We have every reason to believe that 2011 will be better than 2010. That said, while things appear to be on the upswing for our business, over the past year, business for spammers and cybercriminals has also been noticeably good.
Throughout the past year, we found ourselves fighting against a variety of new and old spam and malware tactics and techniques. We were overwhelmed by campaigns spoofing legitimate brands that we use on a regular basis, from our own bank to our preferred package shipper. We received multiple requests from what we thought were legitimate international companies that wanted to do business with us, only to find out that the messages were phishing scams hoping to lure one of our employees into clicking on a malware-infested link.
Our servers were bombarded with emails from Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites that many of our marketing employees use, only to find out that with a single click on a link in the email our entire network could have been compromised or bank information stolen. We have seen waves of these campaigns, and unfortunately, our staff has become the last line of defense. While employee training has helped, we understand that it only takes one. Companies that have become victims of these phishing scams have lost thousands to hundreds of thousands of dollars to these scams, and they, like us, thought they were prepared. We, like them, can’t afford to become a victim.
So, for this holiday season, we really only have one thing on our wish list.
We want an email security solution that works.
We need a solution that is as intelligent as the criminals it is trying to block. It is clear that the cybercriminals of today are extremely motivated and their techniques are complex. Their business is crime, and we need an equally sophisticated tool that can react to the changing criminal landscape. We need a system that can respond in real-time, not in due time, and we want a system that does not require a lot of people-power and maintenance.
We need an email security solution that is also intelligent enough to determine a legitimate email from a spam email. Many products contain words or phrases that are filtered out because their context is not taken into consideration. Adding context to the filtering capabilities will certainly reduce a lot of frustration; especially when that signed contract included with a new customer’s email never makes it past the mail filter.
We need an email security solution that removes from our employees the final decision of determining whether or not an email is legitimate. We don’t feel that our employees should have to adjust their own email filtering settings. The rules should be centralized to protect all employees, as well as our proprietary and confidential information.
Finally, we want an email security system supported by a company that understands that we now live in a 24x7x365 world, and that as our partner, it will not let its guard down. We need a partner that will be proactively watching our backs and protecting our email servers so that we can move forward with our business without looking over our shoulders.
Santa, we know that this is a tall order, but we hope it is not too much to ask for. The last year has been challenging with spam, phishing campaigns and viruses coming in all types of packages and bows, but by fulfilling our wish, we know in 2011 we will have much less to worry about.