Where does a majority of spam originate? My guess is most readers would put China or Russia at the top of your list. Here is a ranking compiled by Proofpoint, one of the largest security firms in the US that provides spam filtering for many of the Fortune 500 companies as well as Colden Company customers.
Who had Argentina on their list ahead of China and Russia? I, for one, did not. Proofpoint goes on to break down the spam senders by percentage and as you can see from the graph below, The European Union is – by a wide margin – the leading spammer.
The full article from Proofpoint can be read at http://www.proofpoint.com/threatinsight/pdf/threat-report/Proofpoint-Threat-Report-May2014.pdf.
The point of the above statistics is not to diminish the threat from countries like China and Russia. On the contrary, it is to point out that the threats can come from anywhere and there are far more threats out there than you may realize.
There have been many recent high profile cases of exposure, such as eBay and Target being compromised, and of course the dreaded Crytpolocker virus which comes via spam email. This virus is still a serious threat and we recommend taking a proactive approach to educating users to the threats that exist.
Another recent threat exposed by Proofpoint was something called an Advanced Persistent Threat (APT) attack that utilized a vulnerability in Internet Explorer (even up to the most current version, version 11). Phishing emails, designed to get the receiver to click on links to malicious sites to infect computers were sent out in bulk. This threat purportedly came from China.
While educating users is a necessary step in combating these attacks, what else can be done? Often anti-virus software is not enough to stop advanced viruses like Cryptolocker. Remember that anti-virus runs on your computer and searches for threats that are already there! Colden Company is offering two new services that can help protect your business from security threats like the ones listed above. The first is Web Protection which will be the subject of this post. The second is our Security Service offering which is a comprehensive security program for your business. More to come on that topic in subsequent posts.
Web Protection is essentially content filtering which allows your business to set guidelines for what is acceptable web content for your users to visit with some added security benefits. Our Web Protection package allows for the blocking of groups of sites like gambling sites or social media, while allowing for exceptions if you want to be able to update the company LinkedIn page, for example. Web Protection also allows for schedule setting so that you can, for example, block social media sites during working hours but allow them during lunch hour, giving you the flexibility to protect against productivity drain while allowing some leniency for employee satisfaction.
From a security standpoint, Web Protection does something else to safeguard your business. It has a continuously updated list of known bad sites that harbor malware and viruses and prevents your users from accidentally or purposefully accessing those bad sites. Often times, users contract malware innocently while attempting to perform very valid work. In those accidental cases or in the case of the phishing email in the example mentioned above, Web Protection steps in and prevent your user from going to the malicious site and contracting the virus or malware. Web Protection saves your business from those mistakes!
Ask us more about this service and we believe you will be shocked at how inexpensive it is to deploy and provide your business with an additional layer of much needed security protection. We can be reached at (888) 600-4560, at firstname.lastname@example.org, or see us on Facebook or Twitter (@coldenco) as well.