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ExchangeDefender has been SMB friendly – to a fault, but the era of terrible passwords and plain text passwords is finally over. Not a single piece of ExchangeDefender stores (or offers) user credentials in plain text anymore. We’ve made the transition exceptionally smooth as well, requiring no changes or IT intervention at all.

But we cannot encourage it enough. And over the next year you will see us introduce several features meant to help you lock down ExchangeDefender and use it to lock down your overall IT security strategy. We’re happy to introduce password age configuration that allows you to force users to reset their passwords automatically.

This setting can be accessed from the Domain Administrator > Policies > Features section of admin.exchangedefender.com

When the password is older than your preset number of days (by default, 90) the user will see an ugly red notice telling them to update their password.

If you set the password expiration to 0 days you will turn this feature off entirely but we cannot discourage it more. The feature is there to help your users avoid having their accounts compromised.

If you implement some of these stronger security features we’ve also got you when it comes to minimizing account management – users can reset their password at any time if they have their PIN on them. So even if their mail server is down, having their PIN handy will let them reset the password without additional authentication. Forgot your pin? No problem, we can email you a reset link to a known email address.

As you can tell, ExchangeDefender will go the extra step of helping your users configure a strong password. It will also keep memory of recent passwords so that they can’t just rotate it back and forth between the same two passwords they use elsewhere.

As you’ve seen with mass password resets , access to advanced access logging , known trusted devices and IP restrictions , we are adding more, and more, of our enterprise features to the ExchangeDefender Pro product.

To hear about all these new security features in more detail please check out the webinar  that covers our current security portfolio and how these features make sense.

 

   ExchangeDefender IP and Device Restrictions

ExchangeDefender is continuing it’s march to becoming your central point of secure communications by bringing even more of our custom Enterprise features  down to the SMB/MSP space. As of today, you will start seeing another section added to the Service Provider screen specifically to house our advanced security settings.

   Restrict ExchangeDefender access to your IP range

All large organizations that depend on ExchangeDefender have static IP addresses and IP ranges assigned to them by the ISP. ExchangeDefender has the power to restrict access to your organization (all domain and user logins) and only allow access from your offices.

Add Trusted/Known Devices For Easier Access

People love the notion of security until that security gets in a way by prompting them. We only want our security infrastructure to get in a way of hackers and to slow down and annoy people that want to do us harm. Good news is, now you can add devices you know to known and trusted device list.

Doing so will minimize some of the additional checks and verification (such as 2FA/OTP one time password checks when you first log in from an unknown address). As an additional bonus, ExchangeDefender will start to deliver notifications and alerts whenever the system is accessed (successfully, meaning they know your password) from an unknown/untrusted device, giving you the first alert that there is a security issue to address.

As you’ve seen with mass password resets, access to advanced access logging, we are adding more, and more, of our enterprise features to the ExchangeDefender Pro product. To find out what else is on our road map, and how ExchangeDefender will evolve in 2019 to serve your other security needs, please tune into our webinar:

ExchangeDefender launches New Security Logs

I have some great news – ExchangeDefender security logs are now available for all users of ExchangeDefender. This move is a part of our larger security ambition for 2019 to introduce Enterprise features of ExchangeDefender across our lower MSP, SMB and retail tiers in order to improve service security.

One of the biggest things in 2019 is the end of the era for plain text passwords. People love them, MSPs rely on them, they are super convenient for everyone including… the hackers that are looking to break in. But more on that in a minute.

The single simplest way to stay on top of account security… is identifying break-in attempts. ExchangeDefender Enterprise logs every event, login, escalation (and so, when you as the enterprise administrator or organization owner choose to automatically login as the user for support purposes) attempt.

We’re happy to bring this feature in across both the service provider, domain and user login. Free of charge.

As the admin or service provider you also have the ability to search the account log for specific user or address that is causing problems. In the Enterprise version you have the ability to further lock things down based on IP, location, charset, and more. But if/when there is an issue, you can clearly see if the account has been compromised. At all other times, you can see login failures that are a good indication that there is a problem.

This feature, and a whole lot more, is coming down to the ExchangeDefender SMB land. While all these features were a premium in the past, the extent to which everything from your PC and the network devices that surround you are susceptible to compromise – we have to treat these features as what they are – essential to your security. As a matter of fact, we’ll be discussing this next Wednesday in our webinar:

When:
Noon, Wednesday, February 6th

Where:
https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/4562047862967330307

Hope to see you there.

Sincerely,
Vlad Mazek
CEO
ExchangeDefender

We’re trying something new, because we’re launching a new product.

We’re enormously proud (and a bit nervous) to introduce our partners and clients to a brand new product category from ExchangeDefender: focused on business process management, optimization and accountability. We’ve learned a thing or two about information management and security by handling Microsoft Exchange for businesses for over two decades and the new product that we’re going to announce on Thursday will help complement it.

We would like to extend an invitation to our partners (*** This webinar is live, there will be no recording ***; style this prominently) to take a look at what we’ve built, what has managed our business for years, and to collect feedback and suggestions on what more we can to do help you count on our new product as a profitable way to help businesses gain some accountability.

The webinar itself will be more of a town hall meeting than our typical death by PowerPoint.

The primary goal is to explain what has been working for us and see what more we can do so it can work for you as well. We will be going over our roadmap, our implementation, our business model and where/how this new thing works. Aside from some cool swag and custom marketing collateral, you’ll also be the first one to get access to the beta version that you can use for free and see how it can manage your business and where you may have a sales opportunity.

A new webinar for October 17th at noon has been scheduled! We’ve been working around the clock to provide our partners, and their clients new features that make all of our work process easier, and more effective. Cool things that are happening as of today, October 1st :

Exchange 2016, Finally

The new exchange 2016 comes with a lot of new features. We’re particularly excited about the ability to create shared mailboxes, and manage password and lockout policies.

Corporate Encryption

You can now reset your recipients accounts (PIN+Password) in Corporate Encryption.

SPAM Reporting

New ExchangeDefender SPAM Email Reports are launching on October 1st 2018 and we’ve made several significant changes to the look and feel based on user feedback.

Friendly Names

You’ve only been waiting 20 years for this feature and we’re happy to finally deliver it: ExchangeDefender will now show friendly display names and email addresses, giving you a better idea of who the email sender is.

Watch ExchangeDefender’s CEO, Vlad Mazek discuss newsworthy topics to be discussed during the upcoming webinar on the 17th at noon. Stay tuned as we share key advancements of our products and within the company. Reserve for the webinar now!

 

 

Billing Compliance Enforcement

September marks another huge month in which we’re cleaning up some of our old “small business ways and means” and replacing them with industry standards, in every facet of our business. But before we get into that, as the changes are both service related and product related, we would again like to remind you to sign up for the big webinar we have on September 5th:

ExchangeDefender New Stuff Webinar
Wednesday, September 5th. Noon EST
https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1810967512151336450

“I cannot urge you enough to attend the webinar and see the changes and improvements that are coming to our products and services. You truly need to understand the structure and the vision behind it because we’re doing the same thing we’ve always done: respond to client requests and how the marketplace dictates what people will pay for and how. So I urge you to please attend the webinar and hear directly from me what we’re up to and how you can run into fewer issues and make more money with us.”

-Vlad Mazek
CEO, ExchangeDefender

Billing Policies

None of the following policies are new or designed to impact our clients in good standing.
Our billing policy has not changed in 20+ years, but we’ve never enforced it fully, and we believe it won’t be an issue for anyone. So for the record:
– We need a 30 day notice on any services you wish to remove from ExchangeDefender (and any of our products, sites and services). We tend to be fairly flexible with this and will continue to do so.
– Any services cancelled within the last 2-3 business days of the 1st of the month will be billed on the 1st and there will be no refunds. See the 30 day policy above.
– Service cancellations will be disabled within the last 12 hours of the month. Our staff will not be able to process them via phone/tickets, they will be locked out as well.

The reason we are suddenly enforcing this policy is because we’ve noticed a significant amount of fraud related to people gaming first/last of the month (where you cancel the service on the last of the month, skip the billing cycle that runs on the 1st, then setup the new service on the 1st and get a free month). If our enforcement of our billing policies seems unfair please keep in mind that we do give you free service from the moment you sign up for the service until the 1st of the month. The other reason is that we cannot process changes and update invoices within hours of the amounts being submitted to the credit card processor.

 Late Fees

Late fees will also affect a small but persistent contingent of our client base that is trying to game and hide from what are fair business practices of paying the vendor. Because we’ve never charged late fees we have a few dozen clients that hide, provide fake credit card numbers or otherwise try to get as much free service as possible. Payment for all services is due on the 1st. If the invoice isn’t paid by the 5th (12:01 AM) invoice will automatically get a $39 late fee. If the invoice remains unpaid by the 15th (12:01 AM) the services will be suspended and subject to other legal remedies, along with an additional $69 re-connection fee.

These policies have not been enforced as a matter of personal courtesy we extended to our partners during the economic collapse of 2006-2009. Today, they require personal interaction and activity by a member of our staff, and every unpaid invoice and billing ticket about not cancelling the service in a timely manner is costing us (and our partners) which isn’t fair.

As mentioned above, these policies will not be an issue for anyone but a small handful that has been abusing the system. As a security company we are constantly being audited and leaving open invoices, not charging, late fees, policies that aren’t being enforced and so on are constantly flagged by our accounting, legal and even compliance auditors so we’re being forced to get a grip on everything. Thankfully, it won’t be much of an issue and we look forward to using freed up resources to deliver a better service to all of our clients.

Development and service improvement around ExchangeDefender is really in a different gear now and we have a huge webinar to discuss all the new stuff that you will start seeing in September:

–  New Shockey Monkey Service Manager UI (for private portals)
–  Exchange 2016 rollout for SMB clients
–  Upgrades to IoT for CAN-SPAM tracking/issues
–  Allowing threaded conversations in Web File Sharing
–  Allowing file exchange through Corporate Encryption
–  ExchangeDefender Pro UI changes
–  and much more.

It’s a LOT of stuff with HUGE improvements all around so if you work with us you’ll really want to attend:

ExchangeDefender New Stuff Webinar
Wednesday, September 5th. Noon EST
https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1810967512151336450

Since February of 2017 we’ve been working on core infrastructure updates to address major weaknesses in the previous infrastructure model and have embraced rapid development, regulatory compliance requirements, different laws and regulations impacting our clients all over the world, and major needs our clients expressed that required development at a different scale. This again puts us (and you) ahead of the competition and we look forward to helping you gain more business.

Tune in!

It’s hard to believe that it’s already been a year since we launched our ExchangeDefender Migration Service. Thanks to many partners and clients who trusted us with their email we’ve been able to hear many compliments and even more suggestions about true problems employees face with email every day.

We’ve been in the lab for the past few months looking at how we can help and what we can do to eliminate those issues, improve productivity and create a more accountable email infrastructure that so much business gets done on. So we have something to show you and I hope you will join us for a webinar that covers it all:

Thu, Nov 6, 2014 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM EST

https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/900163344

Software

The biggest complaint we’ve received from end users is the overwhelming amount of non-human email that makes it’s way into the Inbox and at times simply overwhelms any actual communication that needs to be taking place. While there are third party solutions to address this trend they all retail for 5x more than even the reseller cost of ExchangeDefender! We’ve built it into ExchangeDefender Pro free of charge.

Needless to say, we look forward to showing you how it works and how much more your clients will love you for it!

Service

Migrations was just the tip of the iceberg of dealing with email problems. The part that can’t be seen – and often gets ignored as a consequence – is the mounting cost and issue of archiving, encrypting, protecting, securing and auditing all the data that lives in employees Inbox.

While we’ve been selling encryption and archiving products and services for years, we found that implementation was often incomplete and did not get the constant tweaking and adjustment it needs to meet the requirements of the organization in the first place. We’re stepping up both the education and the “Service & Audit” controls as a part of an effort to enhance the value of our security solutions.

In closing..  as email becomes more critical, more scrutinized by the employer and regulatory bodies alike, grows in size and in importance to daily business – the old way of set it and forget it implementations is being challenged. At ExchangeDefender we look forward to leading both in education and actual feet on the ground, helping you with as much or as little client interaction as you need. As we have proven with a year of migrations, we can help our partners grow and now we also look forward to helping you expand the consulting portfolio.

Sincerely,
Vlad Mazek
CEO
ExchangeDefender

P.S. Yes, the webinar will be recorded and available for download shortly after the event.

ExchangeDefender Essentials and Exchange 2010 Essentials have been some of the most popular products in our portfolio for the past year or so. Originally designed as a compromise between “Enterprise” and “Essential”, the products were designed with IKEA principle in mind: “We started with the price… and built a product around it.”; Due to the products popularity and demand we have redesigned 2013 network from the ground up and would like to share the details of the changes that are coming up in April:

ExchangeDefender & Exchange 2013 Essentials
Wed, Mar 26, 2014 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM EDT
https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/896377176

 

On the original 2007 network we ran pricing specials as we reached capacity on our large scale clusters where we could fit a few hundred mailboxes before building another mailbox cluster. With 2010 we had an Essentials system that was identical to our Business setup but without data center redundancy and business continuity – something many could easily live without until they had an issue or their needs grew. During this time we were presented with many usage scenarios in which Essentials simply made a lot of sense.

With 2013 we are expanding the Essentials portfolio to present both new solutions as well as new pricing points to give our partners working in home and micro-business settings a way to create a solution that fits these new concerns. While the focus is clearly on paying only for the essentials, the business model will allow the client to compromise only in the areas they desire to based on the environment they manage – we have made many of the product features optional, adjusted the SLA, adjusted support and business continuity offerings, and a lot more that will be discussed on March 26th.

Please take a moment to register for the webinar and we look forward to sharing the new product suite with you!

Vlad Mazek
CEO, ExchangeDefender
vlad@ExchangeDefender.com

It’s important for our partners to understand what we are doing, how and why. We put more priority than most other companies mostly because we are small and the only way we succeed is if our partners do as well. With the MSP and IT marketplace wondering which vendors are going to make it through the year all you have to ask yourself is if you will – because if you do so will we. Everything we are doing at ExchangeDefender (and Shockey Monkey) is about helping our partners grow faster. To hear about it in detail please download the webinar we recorded yesterday:

ExchangeDefender 2014 Strategy Webinar

http://www.ExchangeDefender.com/media/XD2014Strategy.wmv

Growth

Every partner I talk to is focused on growing their revenues. Unfortunately growth, as predicted years ago, is coming at a more expensive rate than it did years ago. Not only is there a smaller pool of customers to pick from but the talent is scarce as well – so you will spend more on marketing and more on staffing.

By taking care of migrations, customer service, billing and even marketing assistance ExchangeDefender can help partners acquire more business and deliver more solutions faster. While that sounds like middle management lingo the truth is that you can grow faster if you can deliver more because you aren’t doing all the work yourself.

This is why we are doing what we are doing – our partners look to us to take care of the time consuming, schedule inconvenient, error prone and delicate parts of managing email and cloud solutions. They look to ExchangeDefender to create accounts, move email, configure Outlook clients – all simple and trivial activities that are remarkably time consuming and take lucrative projects into barely breakeven business. If ExchangeDefender can do it for you for free, why would you want to do it yourself?

Limited Time Opportunity

SBS is dead. Microsoft has priced out the rest of it’s solution stack way out of the typical IT budget of a small or medium sized business and when you layer on the cost of management and the cost of IT talent you see why the change is so significant. Even sophisticated IT providers are looking at the onsite infrastructure as a pain point because talent to manage those devices and servers is so expensive and so difficult to replace, combined with the incessant marketing for the cloud it is a losing proposition on multiple levels.

Don’t misunderstand what we are saying – the “move to the cloud” is not something that will go on for years. Last massively deployed SBS version launched in 2008 and those servers are well out of warranty by now. Over the next 2-3 years most of those customers will make it to the cloud and past that point the “move” will no longer have a significant amount of clients to make it worth while holding 6 figure Exchange and SharePoint specialists on staff.

This is why we are doing what we are doing – providing migration and support assistance to help you get your clients to the cloud is our embrace of the marketing and the pressing need in the marketplace. At the time that everyone is demanding it. If you aren’t talking to your clients about the cloud someone else is and the time to move them is now – but should you hire people just for a short term project to get this done? We feel like we can help there as well.

Success Beyond Traditional IT

I am always asked by partners and IT folks what I would do if I were in their shoes right now. What would I focus on?

I, Vlad Mazek, would focus on building up a larger revenue stream. The more money you have coming in and the more profitable you become the more bets you can make. I don’t sit in your shoes and I don’t know which specific terrific opportunities you may have in your local region – but I know that the only way you can take advantage of them is if you have the funds to market yourself and the time (read: employees) to convert the opportunity into cash.

This is why we are doing what we are doing – our smartest and biggest partners realize that the bottom of the traditional IT is going to fall out from the profitability chain and will no longer drive value. However, if you hold on to your clients and help them with the mobile, cloud, devices and so on there is a way to sustain margins and move on up.

Tune in, join up

Download the webinar and hear us out – it’s remarkably easy to get into the cloud with ExchangeDefender and so many people are already marketing the solution to your customers that the sales and value proposition is already clear to them: They just need to know how you’re going to help them do it.

We are at the greatest point of SMB IT – you’ve never been able to build a more sophisticated IT environment for less – and many small businesses are jumping on the opportunity. This is your chance to be a part of it without having to do a lot of work, without having to hire a ton of people, without having to work weekends and most importantly: Without having to lose your clients to a third party or pricing power.

We believe that the opportunity in SMB IT has never been bigger than it is now: It should be evident by the fact that we are providing these services without any additional costs. We are literally putting our money where our mouth is: We want to reward our partners for years of loyalty and give you an advantage in the marketplace. Eventually we will start charging for the migration services as bigger and bigger projects show up but right now you have nothing to lose and lots of new business to gain. Call us and let’s get this started.

Sincerely,
Vlad Mazek
CEO, ExchangeDefender

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