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Mimecast Study: 532% Quarterly Increase in Malicious Email Attachments


Many organizations struggle to identify and address unknown malicious attachments, dangerous files types, impersonation attacks and basic spam, according to a study of more than 95 million emails conducted by cloud-based email management services provider Mimecast.

Key findings from Mimecast's most recent quarterly "Email Security Risk Assessment" (ESRA) included:

  • More than 14 million emails were deemed "bad" or "likely bad."
  • More than 23,000 false negative emails were characterized as impersonation attempts.
  • Email security systems missed 11,653 emails containing known malware.
  • 849 emails that contained unknown malware attachments were detected through the use of sandboxing file behavior monitoring technology.
  • The number of known emails with malicious attachments that passed through email security systems increased 532 percent in comparison to the previous quarter's assessment.

Organizations often believe their current email security systems can protect their critical data and systems against advanced cyberattacks, Mimecast indicated. However, organizations must understand the severity of email-borne threats to safeguard their data and systems properly.

Mimecast Updates Its Targeted Threat Protection Services

Mimecast has added threat detection, remediation and intelligence capabilities to its Targeted Threat Protection services, according to a prepared statement. The Targeted Threat Protection upgrades were announced at this week's RSA Conference in San Francisco.

Targeted Threat Protection helps organizations combat and remediate evolving cyber threats, Mimecast noted. It now features supply chain impersonation protection, similar domain detection and the integration of new automated intelligence feeds, along with automated threat remediation capabilities.

In addition, Targeted Threat Protection offers new real-time data feeds to help organizations identify observed and registered domains and detect security threats, Mimecast stated. Targeted Threat Protection also uses Mimecast's global threat intelligence network to help organizations remediate security threats that originate from email accounts inside or outside an organization.

The new Targeted Threat Protection features will be available in June, and they will be accessible via the Mime|OS cloud platform.

What Is Mimecast?

Mimecast offers security, archiving and continuity cloud services designed to protect business email and deliver email risk management. Furthermore, the company's services are available via a fully integrated subscription service.

Today, Mimecast has over 28,200 customers in more than 100 countries. It also partners with managed service providers (MSPs) and technology resellers and enables them to deliver email security services to protect their customers against spear-phishing, malware, data leaks, data loss and downtime.

Dan Kobialka

Dan Kobialka is senior contributing editor, MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E. He covers IT security, IT service provider business strategies and partner programs. Dan holds a M.A. in Print and Multimedia Journalism from Emerson College and a B.A. in English from Bridgewater State University. In his free time, Dan enjoys jogging, traveling, playing sports, touring breweries and watching football.