Many Business Email Inboxes Sustain Attacks Due to Traditional SEG Security

By Greg Tavarez November 07, 2023

Email communication, as many of us know, is a real cornerstone of business operations, making the data contained within emails a critical asset for any organization. Trustifi's primary mission revolves around safeguarding this asset, ensuring that clients' data, reputations and brands are protected from threats associated with email. They achieve this by offering a comprehensive suite of solutions, including Inbound Shield, Data Loss Prevention and Email Encryption.

Trustifi is committed to providing all-encompassing email security from a single source. Their innovative use of AI technology makes them a leader in the field, helping organizations fortify their defenses and maintain the confidentiality, integrity and availability of their critical email data.

But Trustifi wanted to dig a bit deeper into email security solutions; traditional ones, to be exact. To do that, Trustifi conducted an analysis of emails gathered through its ThreatScan email network scanning tool in 2023 for a new report on email data security.

Graymail and spam emerged as the primary threats identified during the scans. Among the emails that passed through the companies' existing security filters, 1% were deemed malicious (including impersonation, spoofing and phishing attacks), accounting for 12% of all emails considered threats by Trustifi's ThreatScan tests. Additionally, 4% of the identified threats were spam content, making up 28% of all emails categorized as threats.

With nearly 15% of the total volume of emails that had passed through the prospect's cybersecurity email filters marked as malicious, unwanted or undesirable messages, teams like Trustifi's know how those can clog inboxes, among worse outcomes. They can infect the network and/or trick the user into transferring money or revealing sensitive credentials.

"Malicious content that lingers on a server can be activated at any time, and an abundance of unsolicited mail can overwhelm a company's email system,” said Rom Hendler, Trustifi's CEO and founder. “Many mailbox users don't take steps to remove these questionable emails, or don't realize their inboxes are harboring dangerous material indefinitely, increasing their risk levels."

What Trustifi found out is that many clients use traditional security email gateway software (i.e. found in about 70% of business networks). These SEG solutions, based on blacklisting, struggle to detect sophisticated AI-driven phishing and impersonation attempts. The emergence of AI-powered platforms like WormGPT and FraudGPT has amplified these threats, as SEG filters fall short.

"Most executives are unaware that even some of the market's top tier security providers are still using SEG-based blacklisting as their main line of defense, instead of more sophisticated, API-based models with advanced AI tools,” said Hendler.

API-based cybersecurity solutions, which leverage advanced AI, excel at analyzing phrasing, identifying dangerous keywords, and detecting threats in various file formats. This surpasses the capabilities of SEG-based blacklisting, making API-based solutions more effective against modern cyber threats.

“We've seen companies that were long-time Barracuda environments decide to make a major transition to Trustifi's next-gen security suite,” said Hendler.

As the business community has witnessed again and again, sometimes it only takes a breach of one email's password. It doesn’t matter whether it's via ransom, denial-of-service, fraudulent requests for funds, or corporate downtime in the event of an attack. One breach can cause millions of dollars in damage.

Edited by Alex Passett
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