Email Security Blog

As More Phishing Attacks Evade Detection, Increased Automation and Visibility Are Key

Michael Paiko April 7, 2020 BEC, Brand Protection, Business Email Compromise, DMARC

With a growing number of phishing attacks successfully eluding email security controls, losses for businesses and their customers have been mounting fast—and that’s before the current tsunami of email scams seeking to exploit the coronavirus pandemic.

The good news: Our Spring ’20 Release is here to help change that.

Since the beginning of March, Agari scored more than 73 million inbound messages related to COVID-19 on behalf of our customers. Over the course of this period, Agari observed a 592% increase in email messages with elevated risk scores exploiting the Coronavirus pandemic.

As we’ve discussed in recent posts, some of these attacks involve emails purporting to come from the World Health Organization (WHO), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and others, targeting the estimated 57 million corporate employees working from home.

Yet even before the current crisis, a new generation of email attacks have been morphing faster than legacy security controls can keep up. With more than 3 billion phishing emails now sent daily, Security Operations Center (SOC) teams need additional tools to fight back against the growing volume and ferocity of new attacks.

The Agari Spring ’20 Release is designed to enhance our customers’ ability to efficiently block, analyze, and remediate email threats of all kinds.

By adding new automations and improved visibility , the release helps executives manage the risk from rising swarms of email attacks, while giving security teams powerful new tools to detect and stop attacks that rapidly morph to evade detection.

New Customization and Automation Capabilities

While many security solutions provide jargon-heavy explanations for email risk scores, new UI enhancements in Agari Phishing Defense™ provide clear, easy-to-understand explanations of scores and attack classifications security teams need for quick, confident, and accurate threat remediation.

In addition to its world-class threat intelligence, the Agari Spring ’20 Release also enables security teams to define their own criteria for continuous detection searches for latent threats that pose significant financial risk.

Teams can also automate the external identification and removal workflow of malicious messages via an API. Not only does this help maximize existing security investments such as SOAR platforms, it also provides a single pane of glass for email resolution.

Powerful Protections Against COVID-19 Related Phishing Attacks

New enhancements to Agari Phishing Defense also provide our customers with protection against Coronavirus-related email attacks. This includes a dynamic blacklist that tag email messages from more than 60,000 blacklisted URLs as “Likely Malicious” and an “Untrusted” score.

The release also includes a new attack classification for attacks that spoof WHO, the CDC, US Treasury, World Bank, International Monetary Fund and other organizations impersonated by phishing sites. The attack classification is augmented with URL analysis from confirmed bad COVID-19 links,.

Increased Visibility into Attack Scope and Severity

According to a recent study from our researchers, employees at large companies report an average of 35,000 suspected phishing emails per year—60% of which are false positives. This swamps SOCs with more incidents than they can investigate while letting real threats go undetected.

Spring ’20 innovations within Agari Phishing Response™ empower companies to better assess the potential impact of attacks that have seeped through their email security defenses, driving down time-to-containment. This liberates the SOC to focus on true threats that pose significant financial harm. Together with new reporting capabilities, SOCs can demonstrate the efficacy and efficiency of their security infrastructure.

New Features for Tracking Progress Against Brand Hijackers

Agari Brand Protection™ helps organizations simplify and accelerate the process of deploying Domain Message-based Authentication Reporting and Compliance (DMARC) across large email ecosystems and provides clear visibility into email authentication health and threats.

Once DMARC is properly implemented, accurate information and visibility are also essential to protecting businesses from cybercriminals seeking to pirate their domains and use them to impersonate the brand in email attacks targeting their customers, shareholders, and the public at large.

The enhanced dashboard in our Spring ’20 Release includes new reporting features to track detailed email authentication data over configurable time periods and to easily share DMARC program progress with stakeholders.

Innovation for the New Normal

The fact is, the battle against phishing attacks will never truly end. As long as criminals continue to innovate their schemes, the more businesses will need better solutions to outsmart them—especially during this unprecedented period of crisis sparked by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Spring ’20 release demonstrates our commitment to that fight. We understand that continuous vigilance is needed to identify and counter rapidly-evolving threats as the technologies and tactics email crime rings use continue to take new forms.

We also understand the need for advanced email security that is easy to implement, augments legacy security controls, and complements on-premise, cloud-based, and hybrid messaging infrastructure. Which is exactly why top cloud providers, three of the top social media networks, six of the world’s top 10 banks, and thousands of other category-leading organizations count on Agari.

It’s also why we continue to innovate—with powerful new enhancements designed to enable businesses to better protect against costly new email threats as quickly as they emerge.

To learn more about new enhancements in our Spring ’20 Release help organizations defeat BEC, phishing, brand impersonations, and other advanced email threats, read the official announcement for the Agari Spring ’20 Release.

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