Best Options for Securing Email Clients

Spam and malware are the key methods that hackers use to exploit email clients and with the increase in the types of spam and malware, organizations have to work harder to protect email from security breaches and malware. If you want to know what measures your organization is taking to secure email, there are a few basic methods that are used to protect email from spam and malware.

Email Security Appliances

An email security appliance is a device that is installed on the network usually right at the entry point and is configured to run spam and virus fighting applications. The applications usually run on the Linux system and include methods for quarantining malicious files and email messages. Some email security appliances also provide an encryption service for both incoming and outgoing messages.

Some organizations that seek control over the security configurations but want to reduce installation expenses may choose to install an email security appliance. The cost of installation is reduced because the appliance comes with the security configuration pre-installed in the unit. This makes the deployment a lot easier than if you used basic email security software.

Email Security Service

Some organizations opt to use an email security service in place of deploying software or an email security appliance. With an email security service, the incoming mail messages pass through the email security service provider for inspection of malicious files before being forwarded on to the email client within the organization and the recipient.

This service is also known as managed email security services and depending upon the service provider you choose, it can be more cost effective than deploying an email security appliance or software. Managed email security is usually used by smaller businesses and also hosts instant messaging and Web filtering services.

Larger organizations use email security services to reduce the costs of adding additional hardware, software, and personnel that is required to handle the higher volume and size of email messages.

Email Software

Email software is typical email security software that the IT administrator installs on the server to protect email clients against spam attacks and viruses. The software is usually installed on a separate server that will block malicious threats before they reach the email server. The difference between the email security software and the email security appliance is that the appliance offers more security options than the email security software and comes pre-configured.

Email security software allows for custom configurations with more control over the security options. The downside is that the IT administrator has to install an operating system for the software which may have elements that are not compatible with the email security software. If this is the case, the IT administrator spends a lot of time testing and tweaking to ensure that the email security system is functioning properly. Email security software is used by both large and small organizations depending upon the individual security needs of the organization.

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Spyware has many ways of getting onto your computer, such as:

When you download programs - particularly freeware, or peer-to-peer sharing programs.

More covertly, spyware can install itself just by you visiting certain sites, by prompting you to download an application to see the site properly.

ActiveX controls. These pesky spyware makers will prompt you to install themselves while using your Internet browser