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Email Security Tools Try to Keep Up with Threats
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JTEmailSec
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JTEmailSec,
User Rank: Apprentice
5/29/2018 | 2:06:36 PM
The challenge is human behavior - not the technology
Ultimately there's not much that technology can do when people are going to click through to malicious websites, go into spam to open russian bride offers, or wire someone money without using MFA. 

The tools are really powerful, filter in the 99.9%+ of spam or even emails that are questionable.

 
BrianN060
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BrianN060,
User Rank: Ninja
5/10/2018 | 4:04:36 PM
We made email the vulnerability it is today
Thanks for the article on BEC.  

As mentioned, attachments were a principle source of compromise; but no longer necessary, because of other features added for our convenience.  We still refer to these communications as email (electronic mail); though the reference to letters exchanged by post retains little relevance. 

Each letter was an item traveling from one address to another; each email is packet-ized and the packets disseminated to countless waypoints to be copied and forwarded to countless more; in a process that only ends when the addressee (an IP address node device, not a person), informs the internet that at least one copy of each packet in the parcel has arrived at its destination - effectively, emails are broadcast.  Thinking of email, in terms of postal mail (with all our assumptions and experience with that), was a misconception from the get-go.  Maybe "pradio" (personal radio transmitter/receiver), would have given us a clearer picture of what we would be dealing with. 

Postal mail attachments were harmless (unless dipped in poison), at least until any forms were filled out and returned.  Email attachments can carry malware, but imbedded  images (blocks of binary we take to be interpreted as a picture), can serve just as well.  Yes, we can be warned that "images were prevented... "; but legit senders want us to see them, and we want to see what "they" sent - so we revert to the postal mail assumptions that the sender is who they say they are, and download the images. 

What would today's email be without hyperlinks - a lot less of a vulnerability.  With a single click, we can be whisked away to who knows where, or agree to who knows what.   

Maybe the way to make email safer is to make it less 21st century.  At least with business emails, treat the process of sending and accepting them more as we would have with business letters:  Be a little more formal.  Always include specifics in the subject line.  Be more sparing in how many emails you send (pretend it cost you postage and the pay of a secretary to take dictation, correct your grammar, and type it on to your company's stationary).  Offer to send attachments - if they request them in a reply. 

If we keep in mind that email is not mail; yet treat it a little more as if it were, we'd all have less to worry about. 


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