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Mail-Filters Introduces Comprehensive Anti-Phishing Solution

Staff Writer
Published: 2005-03-16

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Mail-Filters, the global leader in OEM anti-spam solutions, today introduced the industry's first comprehensive anti-phishing solution.

Phishing attacks are affecting nearly all consumer and enterprise networks today, according to independent research studies, top industry analysts and IT administrators. Clear evidence shows that phishing attacks are increasing in frequency and sophistication, and in who is being targeted, both consumers and enterprises.

Mail-Filters' anti-phishing technology is the first in the industry to utilize a two pronged approach. Mail-Filters' technology is designed to stop phishing messages from being delivered to end-users and prevents the end-users from accessing phishing web-sites designed to look like legitimate businesses (e.g. banks) where an unsuspecting user might provide sensitive information.

"IDC started voicing concern about the dangers of phishing over a year ago," said Chris Christiansen, VP of Security Products & Services at IDC. "Customers hate phishers' increased messaging volumes, but their rising sophistication is far more worrisome. A two-pronged approach is needed. Anti-phishing products should block inbound messages. Because a few messages may creep through, solutions should prevent outbound responses from malicious code or unwise end-users."

First Defense - Stop Phishing Attacks From Being Delivered

Phishers have increased the volume and improved the solicitation techniques for messages they send out requesting sensitive information from internet users. The messages typically look official, give a reasonable explanation for requesting information, and provide a link to what appears to be a valid web-site.

"Initially the focus of these messages was to capture information used for identity theft: name, address, social security number, bank account number, and so forth" explained Daniel Ashby, Senior Vice President of Sales & Marketing at Mail-Filters. He continued by explaining "Now the focus is to capture information not only for personal identity theft but also for corporate information, corporate intellectual property, online account information, and more."

Mail-Filters' is recognized as the global leader in OEM anti-spam technology with over 30,000 enterprise customers, filtering millions of mailboxes, in over 100 countries and supporting over 30 languages every single day with a catch rate of over 95% and with a false-positive rate of less than 1 in 1,000,000.

Its proprietary anti-spam/anti-phishing technology has as its first line of defense the prevention of phishing messages from reaching the user's inbox.

Second Defense - Block Users From Accessing Phishing Web Sites

For a host of reasons some phishing messages may get through. Mail-Filters now combines its industry recognized anti-spam/ant-phishing technology with new technology to prevent end-users from accessing bogus web-sites that are setup by phishers.

As part of the phishing technique, users are often asked to go to what appears to be a legitimate web-site and enter certain information. For example, a phishing message might appear to be from a bank asking the user to visit the bank's web-site, log-in to their account, and check a "security alert" message.

The web-site they are directed to does not belong to the bank, but has been set up by the phisher to look exactly like the bank's real web-site. The user enters his/her password and username and is informed that everything is fine. The problem is that the user has now given the phisher his/her legitimate username and password…which the phisher can use for criminal purposes.

"With both our existing and new technology, as well as our ability to scan billions of messages per day, we are in the unique position to not only block phishing messages from arriving in the inbox but also know where these bogus phisher web-sites are and block our customers from accessing them unintentionally," stated Daniel Ashby. "Over the past few months we have seen a substantial increase in phishing attacks from all around the world. We have also seen the sophistication of the techniques and the type of information being requested increase substantially. Because the techniques used by phishers will get even more sophisticated and effective, the Mail-Filters technology is going to be a necessity for anyone using the internet."

"Phishing attacks are becoming a growing problem for both consumers and enterprises. As the level of sophistication increases, and the techniques used evolve, the risk will continue to mount" explains industry analyst Sara Radicati of the Radicati Group. She continued by explaining "Identity theft, corporate sensitive information, and financial data, are all at risk. Mail-Filters' anti-phishing technology should be a critical part of any consumer's or enterprise's overall internet security strategy."

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