Email Security Blog

5 Reasons Why I Joined Agari as Chief Business Development and Strategy Officer

Doug Jones May 29, 2019 News

A 300% increase in phishing attacks in just twelve months, with more than 40% launched using cloud-based email, URLs, or both. As many as 1.5 million malicious emails sent from hijacked Office 365 accounts on a monthly basis. Average losses of $2 million for the businesses they victimize—and $7.9 million in additional average costs when they result in a data breach.

Unfortunately, these numbers are getting worse. As the vast majority of businesses continue to migrate to capable and robust cloud platforms such as Office 365, Gmail, Yahoo Mail, and others, a new generation of cybercriminal organizations is rapidly innovating its methods to find new ways to circumvent the considerable security controls built into these platforms.

While these cloud-native systems have grown adept at rooting out malware and malicious links, they are hard-pressed to beat the identity-based email threats that simultaneously leverage these infrastructures while preying on the businesses operating there. Through well-researched, highly-personalized messages, the social engineering mind games these attacks employ manipulate recipients into revealing sensitive information, surrendering login credentials, or making payments on fraudulent invoices.

None of this is new to me. As a veteran software executive, as well as a longtime investor-advisor to numerous VC-backed startups, I understand the importance of augmenting value through strategic alliances. And as an advisor to Agari for the past seven years, I’ve also seen firsthand the unparalleled value its solutions bring to customers. Now, I get to work in the best of both worlds in my new role as Chief Business Development and Strategy Officer at Agari.

For me, there were five all-important drivers behind my decision to join the fight against advanced email threats on a full-time basis.

#1: With Big Risk Comes Big Rewards

For cybercriminals, business email compromise and other email-based attacks grow easier by the day. More than 90% of organizations report being hit by such assaults. Nine publicly-traded companies recently lost as much as $100 million through email scams, and targeted email attacks may be the driving forces behind as much as 48% of all business losses from Internet-related cybercrime—to the tune of as much as $1 trillion per year. Agari is a leader in preventing these email attacks. Who wouldn’t want to join the team that is making a monumental impact on how organizations stop cybercriminals from taking advantage of their employees, partners, and customers?

#2: The Top Attack Vector is More Perilous Than Ever

Unfortunately for organizations worldwide, 22.9 malicious emails are sent every single minute. As many as 30% of corporate employees will open the email, and 4% will fall for it. Email is the single-biggest cyberthreat facing organizations today. And only Agari has the unique IP and proven approach to solve this problem.

By leveraging deep data science and real-time intelligence from trillions of emails, Agari solutions model communications across individuals, organizations, and infrastructures to establish trusted behaviors that define each individual sender’s “good” in order to eliminate the bad—not the other way around. When email activity deviates from established patterns due to impersonated or hijacked accounts, Agari is there to stop attacks from ever reaching their targets, making it an exciting place to grow strategic partnerships.

#3: Traditional Security Controls are Not Enough

The level of sophistication cybercriminals are bringing to attacks on cloud email is astonishing. Newer obfuscation techniques include the use of legitimate Microsoft URLs in the email message, which are “time-bombed” to create a redirect after the email has been successfully delivered, bypassing built-in security controls. Phishing sites, hosted within Microsoft, feature login screens that often redirect victims to the legitimate pages so they never notice an issue. And once legitimate email accounts are infiltrated, cybercriminals are free to launch new attacks, request wire transfers, ask HR for changes to direct deposit information, and even access cloud-connected services to try to hijack DNS servers.

According to Forbes, 29% of organizations report their Office 365 email accounts were compromised in just one 30-day period earlier this year. The Secure Email Cloud is the answer. This powerful suite of cloud-based solutions augments platform-native security controls to detect and protect against BEC scams, spear phishing, and account takeovers, as well as latent attacks that evade early detection and activate after delivery. That makes Agari uniquely positioned to help organizations migrate securely to the cloud. No matter how you slice it, it’s clear that Agari is the best solution available.

#4: The Proof is in the Customer Base

Whether it is revenue growth, industry awards, or attracting the industry’s top thought leaders, it’s clear that Agari is committed to deepening its product, data science, and go-to-market investments to ensure success for every customer. Sure, there is any number of imitators trying to figure out what Agari is already doing. But only Agari offers the advanced email security solutions needed to protect businesses from email scams targeting their employees, partners, and customers.

By putting advanced machine learning and a global dataset in the hands of a team of trailblazing data scientists, Agari gives Microsoft, Aetna, Google, Merck, JPMorgan Chase, Apple, Facebook and thousands of other category-leading businesses something they can’t get anywhere else. Namely, the ability to open, click, and trust everything that hits their inboxes.  By working within some of the world’s most challenging email security environments, we’re able to leverage the intelligence with all Agari customers. What’s more, as new members of the Microsoft Intelligent Security Association, we’re working to integrate with and share threat intelligence with Microsoft so that in turn, it can help its own customers defeat email attacks and stay ahead of cybercriminals.

#5: Opportunity Rocks

When you consider that two-thirds of organizations find that the Secure Email Cloud, combined with their cloud platform’s built-in security controls, delivers everything they need to defeat ever-evolving email threats, you realize this is a solution that sells itself. As I take on this new role, I’m thrilled to get the chance to saddle up with a first-in-class management team I know so well, and whose focus, determination, and relentlessness are as much a selling point as the solutions themselves. As someone who has been in enterprise software for over twenty years, I’m hooked to the rush that comes from delighting customers with fast and convenient delivery of SaaS-based solutions that protect and improve their bottom lines. For me, the chance to do that as part of the Agari leadership team was an irresistible opportunity.

To learn more, access our official announcement on Doug Jones’ new role as Chief Business Development and Strategy Officer for Agari here

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