email security Tag

ExchangeDefender specializes in law firm email and data security.

Hackers are making big money on the legal industry lately, and it seems to only be getting worse. Law firms are vulnerable to cyber attacks due to the nature of their profession. They handle very sensitive information about their clients like: financial records, company secrets, and health information. Cyber-criminals are taking advantage of the fact that the legal sector is slow-moving when it comes to securing their data. If you’re a lawyer, or work for a law firm, here are five major reasons why you should take measures to secure your company right now:

Reason #1: There is a dramatic increase of data breaches

Law firms pose a higher risk for data leaks due to their business nature of storing and sharing sensitive information. Data leaks are the most common result of cyber-attacks. Due to the lack of security used by many law firms, it is easy for hackers to perform data breaches via malware, phishing, and even denial of service.

Reason #2: Phishing scams are most popular

3.4 billion fake emails are sent each day. In 2020, 74% of organizations in the United States experienced a successful phishing attack. It is becoming increasingly difficult to decipher whether an email is a phishing campaign or not due to the growing sophistication in the attacks.

Reason #3: Hacked email accounts is a major problem

There is a hacker attack happening every 39 seconds, and email is the main use of communication for most professional services. Criminals can take over most of your accounts associated with your email once they have gained access.

Reason #4: Lack of security as a priority

Less than half of all law firms in the U.S use some form of encryption software with custom policies to protect their client’s privacy. This means that a lot of your client’s confidential information is just sitting on a laptop or computer unsecured.

Reason #5: Ethical & regulatory obligations are weighing in

To comply with the ABA’s rule 1.6: Confidentiality of Information, lawyers must make a reasonable effort to secure client information. To operate in an ethical manner according to the American Bar Association, lawyers should have security policies in place to ensure the protection of client data.


Bottom line: Cybercriminals love law firms as targets for their cyber attacks. It is crucial for the modern law firm to protect themselves against email-borne threats, and data leaks. ExchangeDefender specializes in law firm data security, compliance, and continuity solutions. The legal industry relies on ExchangeDefender to mitigate risks of cyber and email attacks. We secure your law practice, and protect your clients by eliminating the danger of data breach or ransomware.

According to recent reports from the FBI, Phishing has become the most common form of cyber attack in 2020 and 2021. Phishing is a method that hackers use to steal your sensitive information like usernames or passwords. It is most often used for identity theft, where cybercriminals send a phishing campaign (via email) to gain access to your bank accounts, personal information, and more.

The goal of a Phishing attack is to: gain credentials like bank pin numbers, usernames and passwords, gain personal data like your name, home address, and email, and also medical PHI information like treatment information and insurance claims.

Where does Phishing happen?

Approximately 96% of phishing attacks are delivered by email. In 2020, it was estimated that 1 in every 4,200 emails was a phishing email according to a Symantec report. To put the numbers in perspective, for ever 1 second of internet activity, 3.4 million emails are sent.

There are also fake websites, social media accounts, and phone calls that are used by criminals to try to steal lucrative information. Beware of these websites, always check for the lock sign in your URL, and make sure that the spelling is correct.

What does Phishing look like?

Inside of a Phishing email you’ll find a malicious link, that (when clicked) will transfer you to a fake website that will request your credentials in the form of “logging in”. Most phishing emails, when you look at the subject lines, you’ll find that the following keywords are present, like:

  • Urgent
  • Request
  • Important
  • Payment
  • Attention

The email would appear to be from a brand that you trust, like Amazon, Microsoft, or Facebook. The email “from” address is not actually from the brand, but rather faked to appear like it is.

What happens when a Phishing attack has been successful?

2020 Phishing statistics show that about 90% of users cannot identify a sophisticated phishing email. It’s not because we’re dumb, its because the attacks are executed so well. It is becoming increasingly difficult for companies to secure their data because office workers are human, and humans make mistakes. After a successful phishing attack, about 60% of organizations lose their data, 50% are infected with ransomware and get their credentials or accounts stolen.


Need Phishing protection for your business? Keep your company and data safe with ExchangeDefender PRO!

Interested in learning more about Phishing protection, click here.

Recently, Cybernews reached out to ExchangeDefender CEO, Vlad Mazek to learn more about how we keep businesses safe from cyber-attacks using top of the line security solutions. The informative discussion centers around the topic of cybersecurity, and what that means for the modern business.

With the recent rise in phishing attacks, it is smart to double-check if it’s really your coworker that emailed you.

By now, it’s probably hard to find an Internet user who has never received emails from someone claiming to be a long-lost relative who wants to share their fortune. While the majority of us are familiar with this type of malware, phishing attacks shouldn’t be underestimated. Nowadays, when threat actors start to include more personal details, posing as coworkers or even bosses, staying vigilant is key.

To discuss the topic of cybersecurity and phishing prevention, we reached out to Vlad Mazek, the CEO of ExchangeDefender, a company eliminating email threats before they even reach your inbox.

ExchangeDefender has been providing various security solutions for more than 2 decades. What was your journey like throughout the years?

We originally started ExchangeDefender to improve the reliability of our Microsoft Exchange servers by offloading all the security tools to a more scalable infrastructure. Over the years we’ve expanded our security portfolio to protect other email servers, as well as deliver more secure ways to rely on common office tasks such as file sharing, collaboration, and compliance.

Can you tell us a little bit about what you do? What are the main problems you help solve?

We used to say “We kill SPAM for a living” and to this day we simply eliminate common threats that lead to security compromises and service outages by providing email encryption, long-term archiving & eDiscovery.

We make it easier to rely on email for secure and reliable communication; which we do by keeping potentially dangerous content away from your webmail, mailbox, desktop, or phone. Simply put, we make it easy to get things done more securely.

What technologies do you use to detect and stop threats in their tracks?

We primarily rely on our internal early warning system which tracks unusual activity from known threat actors. Because of our size and client base, we often have the luxury of being among the first to be targeted which helps us identify safe and unsafe developments before they go “viral”.

We also participate in many proprietary, open-source, and data/intel sharing projects that help raise the security profile of everyone involved.

How did the pandemic affect the cybersecurity landscape? Were there any new features added to your services?

Pandemic actually improved the security landscape for our clients because they suddenly had to shift to a remote work model which inherently came with more stringent security requirements and more awareness for security policies and secure collaboration.

We noticed a significant shift from traditional office communication methods to SMS/TXT and we moved quickly to make all of our services SMS-aware. Mobile phones have become a security identification token, a mobile presence device, and far too often a failover computer. That’s why we invested heavily in extending our services to meet our clients’ needs to go beyond just sending email messages.

What sectors (for example, financial, healthcare, etc.) do you think should put extra attention towards email security?

The best way to answer this question is to think like a hacker because for them it’s not personal, it’s business.

Organizations get compromised for one of two reasons:

  1. They have assets (data) that are valuable
  2. They have a reputation that is valuable

If you have a lot of valuable data or a trustworthy relationship with your clients, you’re a valuable target regardless of your industry. It would be difficult to hack a financial institution because they have dedicated IT and security teams, go through routine audits, and can respond to threats quickly. Compare that to a small CPA firm that uses standard tools and an antivirus bundle that came with their PC.

When it comes to cyber threats carried out via email, what are the most common ones?

Email is the most popular way to get cyber threats into an organization, according to a recent study over 90% of security compromises started with email and it has not changed significantly in the past few years: the #1 cyber threat is from spear phishing. Spear phishing is a practice of forging the identity of the sender and the look of the email to something the recipient would find trustworthy enough to click on. What has changed significantly is the end goal of spear phishing:

  1. Deployment of RAT (Remote Access Trojan) software
  2. Theft of PII (personally identifiable information)
  3. Theft of security credentials

This list actually flipped in the last two years mostly due to the sophistication of RAT software that can give an attacker access to the entire network instead of just a single PC or cloud account. The latest variants target UEFI bios which keep the threat in place even after you get rid of the infected hard drives. As these threats evolve, they also highlight other security issues on the network which makes them difficult to remove and require constant monitoring.

With so many teams working remotely nowadays, what are the best practices when it comes to secure file sharing?

The single most important recent advancement in overall IT security that really deserves wider adoption is the use of MFA/2FA/OTP: multi-factor authentication that requires secondary verification before accessing any sensitive system or information. Working remotely, outside of a managed network and access to IT staff, creates a new universe of security threats that should be mitigated by:

  1. Deploying & requiring MFA for access
  2. Deploying a more aggressive backup and imaging solution
  3. Controlling and reducing the attack surface (by limiting access only to required web sites & services)

Besides secure collaboration solutions, what other security measures do you think modern companies should invest in?

You are probably already spending too much on overlapping, redundant, and underutilized security solutions.

The best security investment you can make today is to get an audit of your existing security portfolio and its integration. Being secure doesn’t come simply from paying for a security software/service license – it has to be properly integrated, configured, and monitored in order to truly keep users away from dangerous content. Due to the chronic lack of security focus and the habit of deprioritizing security for the sake of end-user comfort, many organizations find themselves in a perilous situation with cyber insurance demands.

We are seeing organizations getting compromised not because they don’t have security solutions or adequate training but because they don’t take the time to properly and fully implement the security solutions they are already paying for. An overwhelming majority of ExchangeDefender subscribers rely on less than 30% of the security features they already pay for.

Can you give us a sneak peek into some of your future plans for ExchangeDefender?

Our biggest technical investment for 2022/2023 is to make it possible to access external content (email attachments, files, messages, sites & services) in a secure online sandbox environment where dangerous content wouldn’t even have a chance to reach the user’s desktop, phone, or network.

Our biggest investment is in the area of security audits and assessments. While there is always a shiny new tool or service that promises better security, our data indicates that it’s rarely the lack of a tool, and more often the lack of proper deployment and management of sensitive information that leads to a security compromise.

We’ve helped countless businesses that have been compromised over the years and it usually comes down to neglect of security processes combined with a lack of a plan to respond and recover from a hack. Our future plans are to help organizations change that scenario because cybersecurity isn’t something you buy, it’s something you do.

To celebrate the launch of our new small business service plans, we are currently offering 30-day free trials for any service. Interested in ExchangeDefender? Please visit www.exchangedefender.com/business to request your free trial today!

Running a business isn’t easy, and protecting your business from cyber-threats is becoming increasingly more difficult. Hackers want it all, your personal and business details, your client’s payment information, and so much more! It’s no surprise that small businesses are prime target, about 43% of SMBs lack any type of cybersecurity defense plan.  That means almost half of all small businesses don’t have any (cyber) security to protect them against cyber-attacks.

ExchangeDefender PRO is our crowned jewel, our most advanced multi-layered email security suite that protects your business against email-borne threats like SPAM, viruses, malware, phishing, spoofing, and more! Small businesses have smaller budgets, and we understand that which is why our cyber security solution starts at just $5 per user, per month. Adding security to your organization would bring peace of mind as it would safeguard your business against malware and sophisticated phishing attacks. There’s simply no excuse not to protect your business. We tell our clients, if you can afford a Big Mac from McDonalds, you can afford cybersecurity.

ExchangeDefender PRO stops email-borne threats

ExchangeDefender’s powerful email security suite offers a multi-level protection against email-borne attacks. The advanced threat protection features help defend users against threats hidden in emails, attachments, and links. Approximately 90% of all cyber threats originate via email, which requires businesses to have advanced threat protection. ExchangeDefender’s email protection goes beyond the average spam and virus filtering service.

ExchangeDefender PRO prevents data loss and theft

88% of businesses suffer a data breach due to lack of proper email security protocols. Our email protection enables companies to custom their own keyword policies, along with other sensitive data (credit card numbers, social security numbers etc.) they wish to keep private. ExchangeDefender PRO offers complete enterprise-grade threat protection that can help your company defend against the most sophisticated attacks, in addition to the more traditional threats like spam, viruses, and malware.

ExchangeDefender PRO prevents account takeovers

ExchangeDefender Email Protection keeps businesses a step ahead of hackers with AI-based threat detection. Corporate Account Takeovers has costed U.S businesses millions of dollars in 2019, and therefore has become the new focus of security concerns for SMB. ExchangeDefender PRO provides the strongest defense against spear phishing, account compromise and domain fraud. It offers protection to employees from falling prey to sophisticated email-based attacks.


It’s time for you to feel safe with our full stack email security solution, compatible with all major email service providers – including Office 365, on-premise Exchange, and G-suite for business. Get Started for just $5 per user, per month!

We want to thank so many of you that finalized the DMARC deployments during #CyberMonth of October. Special thanks to the thousands of clients that trusted us to update their DNS zones on their behalf, we know that DNS work can be complex and inconsistent from provider to provider, and getting it completed will eliminate countless mail flow problems (many that you’re probably not even aware of).

DMARC compliance allows us to keep you in our priority routing, assures delivery to major email service providers, improves mail flow & delivery, and most importantly – keeps us in your corner when there is a problem. (non-compliant domains are considered a broken deployment and restricted to service inquiries).

What all the DNS work and troubleshooting has turned up is that far too many of our clients and partners do not have the required skill set to properly deploy, maintain, and secure their DNS. This is not a one-off project: your domain name and DNS are your organizations primary identification on the Internet and just like people email you verification links when you sign up for the service, cloud applications are requiring custom DNS records for ownership verification.

In October we launched an ExchangeDefender DNS Service, at just $19/month, that will cover all the work related to your DNS including SSL certificate work, Dynamic DNS, DNSSEC, and whatever DNS standard comes up next.

Through the end of 2021, we are offering our ExchangeDefender DNS Service for just $19/month and we are waiving the setup fees. Contact us today to get this added to your account, as it will cost you exponentially more in troubleshooting and lost business the first time you have an issue.

Our last webinar announced our strategy for expanding the level of protection we offer to our ExchangeDefender users that goes far beyond just email. Our three-pronged approach will now include software, services, and training. We are best known for our email security service “ExchangeDefender” but as the email threats escalate in frequency and evolve in complexity, it is time to add a software component.

Over the past decade we have been developing Wrkoo (codename: “Shockey Monkey”), a business management solution centered around helpdesk and service delivery. As that product has grown to better manage accountability and task tracking, it became a perfect solution for us to use to help our ExchangeDefender users be more secure. Specifically, ExchangeDefender knows about your preferences and security policies – Wrkoo has the capabilities to help your entire organization work better together to create a more secure environment. You will see this distinction and the advantage in action later this week when we announce the Password Vault.

Our implementation is very simple and straight-forward. Every ExchangeDefender Pro protected organization will get it’s own Wrkoo portal (ex: https://exchangedefendercom.wrkoo.com) absolutely free of charge. All the users in ExchangeDefender will automatically be added to the Wrkoo portal and same login credentials will work on both sites.

As we add business-level features that help improve user security, they will be available via https://admin.exchangedefender.com portal under the Shortcuts dropdown (same place you find your Web File Server, LiveArchive, ComplianceArchive, Encryption, etc) as well as via direct login to the Wrkoo portal. This will help our clients quickly navigate between their files, passwords, archives, and all other services.

ExchangeDefender admin portal has been designed from the standpoint of email security and corporate policy enforcement and it is very quick, efficient, and easy to use. Once you look at securing your business beyond just SPAM filtering, things get complex and importance shifts to communication, training, and overall awareness. These are the areas that Wrkoo shines at through its calendars, tasks, tickets/cases/issues, knowledge base, and the ability to help the entire organization communicate and be on the same page. It really is a perfect medium to help everyone in your business manage their information in a more secure and practical user -friendly way.

Our mission remains the same: to keep you safe online. As the threats evolve and management of compliance, reporting, audits, and training becomes more complicated – our solution is there to help you scale and address those issues without spending more money. ExchangeDefender and Wrkoo are here to make that possible.

Over the past year we’ve been introducing enterprise security measures to help protect our clients from an increasing volume of attacks. Email is the single most abused gateway for email threats – with 91% of corporate breaches starting through email – and it’s only getting worse.

If you’ve used Yahoo, MySpace, or hundreds of popular free web sites (go to https://haveibeenpwned.com/ to see how/who exposed your data) your credentials and other information is available on the web. Hackers are using these passwords and personal information to guess their way into other sites that haven’t been breached – so if you use the same or similar password (or only change the site id, or one number or letter to make it different) then you’re making it very simple for hackers to get into your account.


And we get it. Dealing with security, passwords, and locking down online services is time consuming. But as the company whose main purpose and mission is to keep you secure – we want to help save you time and make it easier for you to be secure.

For the details on all the stuff we’ve got coming in September, we’d like to invite you to our webinar:
    ExchangeDefender Security Upgrade
    Tuesday, September 10th, 2019
https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/6898777257651237900

In the meantime, we’re going to help our partners and clients not make things “stupid easy” for hackers – by globally resetting ExchangeDefender passwords that are older than 1 year. We’ll do this on September 1st, in a very minimally intrusive way, and for those that don’t use ExchangeDefender on the daily basis (and mainly just release SPAM from quarantines) the password change won’t affect them.

Using an OTP/2FA or VPN services or all the free features that are built into ExchangeDefender to keep you secure is obviously our preferred way but as we’ve noted – the realities of SMB concern for IT security – so we need to try something else. We really hope our partners and clients can take the time to attend the September Webinar, as we believe the stuff we’ve built will help lock down your organization and make security manageable again.

Ever since we committed to ExchangeDefender Phishing Firewall as a core feature in ExchangeDefender, we knew that the biggest user benefit will be a trusted cyber-security expert available as a part of the solution. ExchangeDefender redirects all links that pass through ExchangeDefender through our firewall, giving users that click on a suspicious link in their email more information about the suspicious site – for example, if you clicked on a link in an email from Bank of America and are actually going to a web site in Poland, it might be an issue. But who do you turn to when there is an issue?

ExchangeDefender Chief Security Officer is just a click away and so far we’ve handled over a thousand inquiries from our clients and partners. If you’re looking at a link and you cannot tell why we intercepted and flagged the content, just click on the yellow button and fill out a form.

Within 24 hours you’re guaranteed a response from our team. The turnaround average so far has been just 18 minutes!
What happens on the back-end is actually quite hands-on: first we investigate the original email and compare the context with the link target, location, etc. We then open the link in a sandbox (safe environment without additional network connectivity and no data) to see what sort of information the web site collects and attempts to send. We then rephrase it in a non-techie user-friendly way and help the client out.

We’ve been overwhelmed with both skepticism and compliments as a result – turns out most users do not expect a response and are pleasantly surprised when an actual human emails back with useful information. We’ve gotten compliments on our turnaround time, usefulness of information, saving the user from dangerous content, as well as thankful comments about the frustration that phishing in general creates – as we’ve been fine tuning xdref.com our users are seeing it less and less and when they do see it we are happy to help.

The overall value of the service cannot be overstated – we’ve saved our CIOs, partners, MSPs, IT guys and gals hundreds of hours in investigative work alone. We got our clients a security audit that allowed them to continue to work quickly. Not to mention about all the bad links that likely would have lead to a breach or security compromise – that the users and techs never had to deal with.

P.S. Included in ExchangeDefender Pro at no additional cost. If you’re still frustrating your clients with “training” programs/videos/whitepapers that SPAM filters catch and junk anyhow – stop wasting your clients time and moneyExchangeDefender Phishing Firewall is a better, more effective, more affordable solution.

ExchangeDefender Phishing Firewall has been a huge success in it’s initial roll out and I wanted to take a moment to bring you up to speed on our progress and our end goal: to eliminate phishing and spear phishing as a threat to our clients. I do not intend to mince words here, this is the #1 threat out there – 90% of all compromises and breeches start with a phishing email. Stopping it, as an email security company, is our #1 job and I’m happy to report that initial results are stunning.

Little bit of a rewind: Until now the most popular way to fight phishing and spear phishing was through “education” – there is an entire cottage industry of supposed “phishing education”, testing, refreshers – and it all revolves around training people to hover over links in Outlook, what not to click, what to read. It will not surprise you that such “training” is practically worthless, but they say that a picture is worth a thousand words so here is our phishing book:

In the 48 hours following 4th of July weekend in United States, dangerous links in the email were clicked on over 770,000 times.

Without ExchangeDefender Phishing Firewall, these links would have redirected our clients to dangerous sites that likely would have lead to a compromise or a security breach. So much for training.

What’s even more telling is that, even with our firewall in place, 164,000 people decided to proceed to a dangerous site anyhow.

If more than 1 out of 5 clicks in your email will take you somewhere dangerous, how well is your training performing?

With ExchangeDefender Phishing Firewall we are enabling companies to setup policies, restrict access, provide intelligence as the user clicks — and we provide logging giving you an idea who attempted to trash your organizations network.

The scary truth behind phishing is that training is only useful in blatantly apparent cases – the kind that will NEVER even get to your inbox. Our SPAM filtering detects dangerous email content and filters it out before it has a chance to get to your Inbox. The stuff that we can flag as dangerous – thanks to user reporting, audits, and look-ahead scanning is far more sophisticated than anything we could pack into a SPAM filter – and it gives your users real intelligence on what they are about to click on. You cannot expect users to remember all their training and to be a web security analyst – their job is acting on the email.

Our job, is making sure the emails get to them clean and free of dangerous malware. Once they click on the links in the email – we are going one step ahead – and leveraging our industry relationships (data feeds and infosec sharing of dangerous content) to make sure you know exactly what you’re clicking on.

Phishing is immensely profitable and far more effective than any other form of hacking – the user literally clicks and gives the hacker the keys to the network – and our ExchangeDefender Phishing Firewall helps remove the danger and reduces phishing to merely an annoyance.

The numbers speak for themselves.

Sincerely,
Vlad Mazek
CEO
ExchangeDefender

ExchangeDefender Phishing Firewall continues to impress in terms of performance and user engagement – it’s catching dangerous content and keeping users safe from phishing attacks that often result in security compromises and breaches. Phishing accounts for over 90% of IT compromises, and as we’ve written before more than 1 out of 5 links our clients click on have lead them somewhere dangerous. With those numbers it’s clear to see why hackers are relying on phishing as the first and most effective form of attack – people will click on anything!!! And as intrusive as EPF seems to some (thank you for your feedback), our development team has been working overtime since the launch to make ExchangeDefender Phishing Firewall out of the way when it should be, and in your face when something dangerous shows up.

The goal of ExchangeDefender Phishing Firewall is to keep you safe from potentially dangerous sites and out of the way the rest of the time. You can keep up with our Dev fixes over at https://www.anythingdown.com and keep sending us your feedback. We love to hear it and we love improving the service so it can help keep you and your business safe. We also like to hear what you want us to add to the service that would make it more valuable. One such piece of feedback helped build a “Report Issue” feature:

If you click on something that you don’t recognize and you can’t tell what it is – DO NOT CLICK ON THE LINK – we are here for you. Our security concierge will open the link in an isolated virtual environment and see what kind of data is being sent back-and-forth. You will get a response, generally within minutes, with either a thumbs up or thumbs down. How cool is that?

Keep the suggestions coming, we love making ExchangeDefender Phishing Firewall the key part of your defense from phishing.