Tag: email security

What is Barracuda Essentials? Email security for SMBs

What is Barracuda Essentials?

Barracuda Essentials is an email security solution ideal for small businesses and mid-sized organizations looking to deploy simple, yet feature-rich inbox security. Barracuda Essentials includes a ton of anti-virus, anti-spam, and advanced threat protection elements that prevent email-based attacks. That includes protection against phishing and other social engineering attacks. Oh and by the way, email is the most common vector of attack against SMBs. In fact…

Did you know… 91% of cyberattacks start with an email

Barracuda Essentials provides cloud-based, advanced protection as well as encryption and data leakage protection. What’s more, no additional hardware or software is necessary to add cloud-to-cloud message archiving. With all these powerful features combined, you have no reason to fear ransomware.

Email Continuity of up to 96 hours means your small business can keep sending and receiving business-critical messages even if you experience email outages or loss of Internet. How does it work? Emails fail over to a cloud-based service, letting you use emergency mailboxes so there’s no interruption.

What sets Barracuda email security apart?

  • Stops targeted phishing attacks with URL protection
  • Dynamic threat analysis & real-time threat detection
  • Integrates directly with Office 365 API
  • Centralized management with cloud-based console
  • Cloud-based archiving simplifies compliance

Barracuda Essentials Email Security

Barracuda Essentials locks down small business emails, cutting off the #1 attack vector for modern threats. Most importantly, all these services are cloud-based, meaning there’s no need to download additional software or find space in your server rack for another appliance. This cloud-based protection includes:

  • Anti-Spam
  • Inbound & outbound anti-virus
  • Phishing protection
  • DDoS protection
  • Advanced anti-malware
  • Full-system emulation sandboxing
  • URL protection to foil typosquatting

Quickly filter your entire volume of inbound email traffic to detect & block email threats. Barracuda Essentials protects inbound traffic with advanced features like spam scoring, intent analysis, and reputation checks. Barracuda Essentials is backed by 24×7 threat intelligence from Barracuda Central. To sum up, this global operation center constantly monitors new threats and empowers onboard AI to automatically detect and respond to incidents—even zero day threats.

Easily meet compliance & maintain productivity

Barracuda Essentials includes cloud archiving that is easily searchable, tamper-proof, and redundant. Above all, this simplifies compliance with easy e-discovery, allowing you to search and filter historical message archives to easily locate specific emails.

Ransomware is a huge concern for small businesses. Loss of important data can be devastating whatever the cause, but cloud-to-cloud backup eliminates the threat entirely. Barracuda Essentials cloud-to-cloud backup lets you easily restore your data in the event of a loss. In sum, this minimizes downtime, letting your business get back to what it does best. Cloud-to-cloud backup includes unlimited storage, so Barracuda Essentials is an ideal solution to grow with your business.

  • Easily meet compliance demands
  • Reduce ongoing legal risks
  • Automatic de-duplication minimizes storage footprint, saving you money

Barracuda Cloud to Cloud Backup included with Barracuda Essentials

Productivity is a huge concern for small businesses. If inbound and outbound email stops flowing, the lifeblood of small business stops too. With email spooling, you do not have to fear email downtime. Up to 96 hours of email spooling keeps you rolling even in the face of major outages.

Block spearphishing attacks with Barracuda Sentinel

Barracuda Essentials teams up with Barracuda Sentinel when you buy the cost-efficient Total Email Protection bundle. Sentinel defends users on your network from the latest social engineering attacks by utilizing artificial intelligence. And it’s very intelligent. To clarify, Barracuda literally learns the way you write emails to other users in your organization to determine if an account has been taken over or impersonated. This granular user awareness is unprecedented in its ability to predict potential account takeover.

Take a deeper dive into Barracuda Email Security

Pro Services Spotlight: Add Punch to Your Network Security

While quality network security appliances are crucial for your organization’s success, there are more factors at play when it comes to ensuring your network functions at the highest levels possible. That’s why, in addition to top-notch hardware, we have a staff of manufacturer-certified experts offering a variety of customized solutions to help your network excel. Our engineers, located on-site at our Indianapolis Security Operations Center, can assist with anything from email security to phone systems. We offer both hourly support contracts and one-time security services.


In our first post of our Pro Services Spotlight series, let’s take a closer look at a few of the Professional Services we offer that help add punch to your network security.

Firewall Health Check

So you’ve purchased your firewall and it’s been up and running for a year or two. But when was it last updated? The ever-changing landscape of online threats–including viruses, malware cocktails, and ransomware-as-a-service–means you can no longer “set it and forget it” after installing a firewall.

With a Firewall Health Check, our experts review your firewall configuration & settings to determine if there’s room for improvement in your security posture. If there is, they’ll make sure to bring your firewall up-to-date with the latest policies, configurations, best practices, and more. Our engineers assess every nook and cranny to ensure you’re ready to combat the next wave of threats.


Email Security

Whether you have dozens, hundreds, or thousands of users, email is often the easiest route for hackers to infiltrate your organization. A seemingly innocent click by an employee can expose your network to a litany of problems.

With Email Security Services, our experts configure SMTP, POP3, & IMAP settings to protect your business from threats such as phishing, domain spoofing, and other social engineering scams. Your appliance can also be configured to block sensitive information such as credit card information, social security numbers, and log-in credentials to knock out suspicious emails before they touch your network.



Over 60% of web traffic hides behind encryption. How does your security hardware know whether data is safe? Deep Packet Inspection (DPI). Our engineers take on the complex task of enabling your network for deep packet inspection to scan all traffic, encrypted or otherwise, for the latest advanced threats.

We also offer expert help for deploying trusted certificates that signal to customers and visitors that your site is secure. This helps your business establish customer trust  and increase visibility to search engines like Google and Bing.


Explore All of Our Services

These are just a few of the many Professional Services our Firewalls.com experts offer. If you’re interested in one or all of them, see our full suite of options or call us today at 317-225-4117 to learn more.

3 Things to Learn from Google’s Latest Report on Stolen Credentials

Over the last year, Google has teamed up with University of California, Berkley and the International Computer Science Institute to collect, analyze, and report data on the contemporary landscape of black-hat email credential theft. In a period between March 2016 and March 2017, Google anonymously inserted themselves into private forums, credential trading markets, and dark web paste sites in order to learn how the bad guys, looking to steal your login and password information, are operating and evolving in the modern era. Or, as Kurt Thomas et al, authors of the study, put it, Google’s newest study “presents the first longitudinal measurement study of the underground ecosystem fueling credential theft and assesses the risk it poses to millions of users.” So, what’s that all mean for you? Let’s break down the numbers and outline 3 major take-away’s from Google’s study to understand how miscreants are trying to compromise your email security.

This study analyzed databases of purportedly stolen email credential information throughout 2016. Of these datasets, roughly 788,000 instances were the result of keyloggers, 12.4 million were sourced from phishing kits, and 1.9 billion credentials stolen in larger data breaches.

1. The Bad Guys Are Staying Up-To-Date. Are You?

If you’ve considered beefing up your security infrastructure but decided that it’s probably safe to lag a year or two behind the latest technology, you’re being outclassed by the competition. Online black-hat forums distribute pre-built phishing kits and keyloggers with thousands of variants and iterartions to ensure that they stay on the cutting-edge of cyber crime. Google’s study identified over 4,000 different strains of phishing kits available in 2016, and that’s only the variants they DID find.

The bad guys aren’t making off with only information from old, unused, or abandoned accounts. 7% to 25% of recovered credentials matched the current login credentials of the accounts they were stolen from. (Don’t worry, Google made sure to reset any compromised accounts they identified!) Phishing kits in particular showed troubling results in this area: a whopping 25% of the stolen data that Google reviewed matched current, usable login credentials. The study concluded that victims of phishing kits are 400 times more likely to be successfully hijacked than an average user.

2. Corporate Phishing is a Cyber Gold Rush

Prospector Jeevekins was right about the dangers of unsecure email

That old prospector was right when he warned us all about the dangers of social engineering in the age of communication. During their research period, Google detected 234,887 instances of potentially valid credentials being transmitted to an exfiltration point (bad guys’ email) per week. Read that statement again. Not 234,887 attempts. 234,887 successful transmissions of potentially valid credentials per week. The estimated success rate for a phishing kit is 9%.

  • Phishing kits were largely aimed at victims located in the United States, with just shy of 50% of identified victims’ geolocations based in the U.S.
  • 83% of phishing kits collect geolocation data in addition to login credentials
  • 40% collect financial information such as credit card data
  • 18% collect phone numbers
  • 16% collect User-Agent data such as the browser, device, and platform in use at the time of the attack
  • 9% collect social security numbers

3. “Stronger Passwords” Can Only Do So Much

Increasingly, organizations are coming to terms with the fact that a simple login/password combination is the bare bones when it comes to email security. Even hashed passwords based on salt values are proving flimsy under scrutiny, with Google’s report estimating that almost 15% of the stolen credentials in their study were hashed using MD5 and 10% with SHA-1 cryptographic hash functions.

To make matters worse, it can hardly be said that victims are learning from their mistakes. Research indicated that of victims that had their credentials stolen, only 3% later chose to switch to a two-factor authentication process as opposed to a simple login/password combination.

What Can I Do About It?

These numbers may be grim, but so long as organizations are as dedicated to email security as the bad guys are to stealing data, there is hope. Increasing usage of two-factor authentication as well as password management apps mean that the business world’s approach to cyber security is begrudgingly moving past the bare minimum. An even more secure future can be found in various email security subscriptions, encryption services, and anti-virus/anti-spam clients. Here are a couple recommendations for products that can prevent your login credentials from winding up on a black market spreadsheet.

Email Encryption

Email encryption is the process of encrypting the content of outbound messages in order to prevent 3rd party entities from intercepting and reading that data. In many cases, this means that the readable plain text has been scrambled into a cipher text which can only be unjumbled by a private key held by a recipient that matches the public key attached to the encrypted data. Email encryption services are usually subscription services that entail additional features and services in addition to message encryption.

  • Record ID Matching: Scans outbound content for sensitive information before delivery
  • Attachment Scanning: Probes potentially harmful attachments to ensure safety before opening
  • Predefined Compliance Policies: Built-in policies designed to be easily deployable for common problems and compliance issues such as HIPPA or PCI
  • Approval Boxes: Allows you to preview unverified emails before they are opened onto your network


TotalSecure Email

SonicWall TotalSecure Email provides complete protection for both inbound and outbound e-mail by providing award-winning anti-spam, anti-virus, anti-phishing, and policy and compliance management in one easy-to-use solution. For larger organizations there is simply no easier way to get complete email security. TotalSecure is a comprehensive package that holistically protects your inbox’s attack surfaces from every conceivable angle of attack by bundling several useful subscriptions together into a single strategy.

  • McAfee Anti-Virus: To keep the bugs at bay
  • SonicWall Time Zero: Protection from zero-day threats, focusing on the time frame between initial detection and receiving signature-based solutions
  • Corporate Phishing Protection: Uniquely identifies phishing attempts and enables admin to handle them independently from spam
  • Email Policy Management: Allows admin to quickly create and enforce corporate compliance policies
  • End-User Spam Management: Delegates spam management to end-users, reducing false positives and easing the load on your IT guys


Want to see Google’s research for yourself? Download the PDF.

5 Ways WatchGuard SpamBlocker Guarantees a Safe, Clean, Productive Inbox

SpamBlocker by WatchGuard is a powerful real-time detection system designed to provide immediate, comprehensive protection from spam outbreaks. As spam accounts for up to 95% of global email traffic, it can be difficult for applications to distinguish between spam and legitimate communications. SpamBlocker takes the guesswork out of suspicious or unwanted emails.

Spam email is still the number one avenue through which cyber criminals send malicious files and viruses. Spam also accounts for a large share of network traffic lag, cutting into your organization’s productivity.

SpamBlocker subscriptions can be added to your WatchGuard XTM or Firebox security setup.

Flexible administrator control

Bulk mail can cause network speeds to plummet, but SpamBlocker administrative controls allow you to choose which users or user groups can access bulk folders. Admins also have powerful tools such as whitelist and blacklist capabilities at their fingertips. Compatible with both SMTP and POP3 protocols.

Spam quarantine

Spam, bulk mail, and suspicious emails will wait for you in fully-functional, secure quarantine until you have the time to review them further. Quarantines have granular control, allowing you the flexibility to customize to your unique needs.

Optimized for better network performance

Since a majority of data processing takes place outside your gateway, you can count on WatchGuard SpamBlocker to run on minimal bandwidth and CPU power. Don’t settle for a blocky, resource-heavy solution. After all, one reason you’re blocking spam in the first place is to maintain throughput performance!

Intuitive management

Even novice network administrators will be able to deploy and manage your spam blocker thanks to an intuitive, easy-to-learn interface. Don’t give yourself a headache trying to get rid of another headache. WatchGuard SpamBlocker is a pleasure to use.

Cost-effective solution

Since SpamBlocker is priced per appliance, a single SpamBlocker subscription is enough to guard your network and all of the users configured behind your WatchGuard XTM or Firebox.

SpamBlocker is just one of many powerful and comprehensive endpoint tools available for next-generation firewalls. WatchGuard appliances are famous for their ability to operate at breakneck performance speeds even with a full load of add-ons and features enabled. WatchGuard Extensible Threat Management (XTM) can provide dynamic solutions on your network.


PHISHING ALERT: The Better Business Bureau warns members about fraudulent emails

Companies are being urged to think twice before opening notices of complaint from the BBB as an intense phishing campaign ramps up targeting business owners. An email from Central Indiana branch of the BBB issued statements claiming that the “BBB name and logo are being fraudulently used by criminals” in a social engineering scheme.

Fraudulent emails are delivered under the guise of a violation complaint. Over 100 malicious websites have been shut down in response to attempts over the last few days.

Here are signs that you’re being targeted:

1. Check BBB emails to ensure details look legitimate. Poor formatting, typos, grammar mistakes, and generic form field greetings are all signs of a phishing email.
2. Double-check the sender’s email address. Does it appear accurate?
3. Do not click, save, or open any attachments or links.
4. Social engineers take advantage of fear, urgency, and doubt to rush targets into a rash decision. If an email asks you to take a specific action (like opening an attachment) to maintain your account or rating, think twice.

If you believe that you may be the target of a phishing email, follow these steps:

1. Delete the email and ensure that you empty your recycling bin.
2. If you clicked any links or opened attachments, immediately change your log-in credentials.
3. Watch your finances. If you see any unexpected transactions, you may want to investigate further.
4. Ensure that your endpoint protection is running with all available updates installed.

With proper understanding of social engineering practices, you can stay safe even against emerging threats.

Here’s a quick look at one of the inbox impostors:

bbb phishing social engineering email firewalls cyber security

The silver lining

Phishing is a topic to discuss in your workplace. This BBB scam represents a prime example of social engineering and cyber security safety that can be dissected for your team. Building a culture of cyber security in the workplace is a best practice that every business should keep on its to-do list. We encourage you to print the sample email provided above, highlight the tell-tale clues of social engineering, and hold a discussion with your staff about email security.

If you found a suspicious BBB notification in your inbox, do your part by reporting the email to phishing@council.bbb.org.

Fortunately, you don’t have to worry about fraudulent emails when you use SonicWall’s TotalSecure Email Protection.


How One Company is Standing Out in the Crowd: Capture ATP makes other sandboxes look small

Sandbox technology, which you can find a definition for on our Network Security Glossary, is the latest buzzword clawing its way through the info sec community. The rise of cloud-based threat protection is here and already the major players are proving they intend to maintain their seat in the pantheon of info sec titans. Perhaps the most successful showing, however, is from SonicWall. Capture ATP is making a real impact thanks to consistent successes in the face of a spike in high-profile ransomware attacks. ATP stands for Advanced Threat Protection and with Capture ATP that is exactly what you get.

Some major feats so far for the emerging cyber security champion include protecting its users from Petya thanks to having detected threat signatures a year in advance and silencing the encroachment of Eternal Blue exploits in April 2017, just before WannaCry. The bottom line is that Capture ATP is the real deal.

So how does it work?

Capture ATP detects suspicious code right at the gateways of your network and quarantines them in a virtual emulation of your system, allowing threats to unpack themselves and betray their nasty secrets in a safe sandbox environment where they can be monitored, tested, and neutralized.

Remember this scene from Jurassic Park?

feeding cows to ransomware

It’s sort of like that: corral potential threats into a cage, then let them openly demonstrate their viciousness against disposable targets while we watch at a distance.

Okay, sandboxes aren’t new. So what makes Capture ATP stand out among the crowd?

Most sandbox systems run suspicious threats through one engine before giving threats the thumbs up or thumbs down. In these cases, you are relying on the manufacturers’ inspection systems to get it right the first time, every time. SonicWall seems to understand that getting another pair of eyes on an issue can be beneficial. In addition to SonicWall’s own threat-detecting engine, Capture ATP scans are backed up by LastLine Breach Detection and VMRay Analyzer engines that provide a second and third opinion before giving a verdict on potential threats.

I have standard anti-virus protection already. Why do I need ATP?

AV clients are great for blocking known threats. But cyber criminals of 2017 are shape-shifters and masters of disguise. The bad guys are becoming much better at sneaking through your gateways and in response, security protocol must tighten. Where once stateful inspection was sufficient, serious security firms are now demanding nothing less than deep packet inspection. As the enemy evolves, so too must the good guys.

The greatest threat to your network is now from zero-day threats. Zero-day threats are cyber attacks that target exploits that have, at the time of the attack, not been discovered or discussed widely by the cyber security community. These are attacks that could not properly be prepared for because the danger was not yet apparent or understood. With Capture ATP, suspicious code is stopped at the gateway and held in custody until an official verdict is determined. This is better-safe-than-sorry security that errs on the side of caution. With Petya, Wannacry, Eternal Blue, and other major exploits in the global spotlight, this understandably draconian style of network security is saving the day again and again for those of us under its protection.

SonicWall’s motto for the sandbox campaign is “Fear Less” and with Capture ATP, it seems more a promise than a tagline. Let’s face it, businesses everywhere just want to get this ransomware thing behind them so they can get back to taking care of customers and making money. Capture ATP cannot cure the ills of the cyber world, but it can take the pressure off of small to medium-sized businesses and enterprises alike so that we can stop worrying over every email attachment and get back to worrying about growth, customer relationships, and values.

capture atp sonicwall firewall