With a recent report from technology giant Cisco showing 65 percent of overall email in 2016 was classed as spam, and 8-10 percent of spam viewed as malicious, 2017 should not be a year for businesses to slack on their email security systems. That is the message from an IT and communication expert, who claims concerns from customers are most often surrounding security breaches via email as malicious messages continue to rise.
Cybercrime through methods such as ransomware – whereby malicious software prevents or limits access to a computer system until a sum of money is paid – should be of major concern to businesses, since it is most often circulated via spam email, claims Simon Ahearne, managing director of SA1 Solutions. These emails, disguised as being from a genuine sender, contain infected attachments and/or links to malicious websites.
The latest ransomware strain, Spora, is similarly distributed through this email method via malicious attachments, and uses a sophisticated encryption system and advanced payment site to trap victims.
SA1 Solutions advises businesses to use an advanced email security and filtering system, which gives piece of mind that security threats are minimised. Using a managed email solutions provider can give businesses a fully-integrated email security and cloud-based solution. This means an organisation is protected from the most sophisticated email threats, as well as accidental or malicious data leakage via email.
Simon Ahearne, managing director of SA1 Solutions, commented: “Having an email system in place that keeps viruses and security threats to an absolute minimum is essential. I don’t know why any business owner would risk neglecting email security, especially when these new cybercrimes keep targeting email inboxes.
“The most common security issue coming from our customers is related to emails. As the main communication channel to and from a business, email security should be a top priority, especially for companies where the majority of their data is of a sensitive nature. A back-up of an organisation’s data should be a standard practice so important information is not lost.”
The 2017 Annual Cybersecurity Report by Cisco also highlighted that organisations effected by cyberattacks are suffering from business loss, with revenue declines of over 25 percent in some instances. The report also showed more than 50 percent of organisations have had to deal with public scrutiny after a security breach.
Ahearne added: “Organisations shouldn’t only be concerned with the impact an email security breach can have on the business itself in terms of downtime and financial losses, but the effect on their customers should also be considered. If customers’ data is put into jeopardy, an organisation’s reputation can suffer, which is clearly a crisis that could result in the business suffering long-term.”
SA1 Solutions is a leading managed service provider based in South Wales, offering services to over 200 customers across the UK.