Phishing attacks, a major threat to corporate and personal cybersecurity, can deliver malware and steal sensitive data or money from an organization. Phishing protection solutions enable companies to block attempted phishing attacks before they pose a risk to the company and its employees.
Why Is Protection Against Phishing Critical?
Phishing attacks are one of the most common types of cyberattacks. Phishing attacks are popular among cybercriminals because they are relatively simple to perform yet highly effective. Instead of attempting to identify and exploit vulnerabilities in an organization’s systems, phishers trick or coerce their victims into taking actions that hurt them or the organization.
Phishing attacks can have various impacts on the business and its employees. Phishing messages can be used to deliver malware (ransomware, infostealers, etc.), trick employees into handing over sensitive information, or trick the victim into sending money to the attacker.
Phishing protection solutions help organizations to manage their phishing risk by identifying and blocking phishing attacks. By preventing malicious messages from reaching their intended targets, companies reduce the probability that an unwise click will incur significant costs for the company.
How to Protect Against Phishing Attacks
Companies can protect themselves and their employees against phishing attacks in various ways. Some of the means by which companies can prevent phishing attacks against their employees include:
- Employee Education: Phishing attacks rely on the attackers tricking or coercing the target into taking some action. Training employees to identify and properly react to phishing messages reduces the probability of a successful attack.
- Email Scanning: Phishing attacks often come over email and can incorporate malicious links or attachments. Email scanning solutions can use various means to identify malicious emails, enabling an organization to block them before they reach a user’s inbox.
- Anti-malware: Phishing emails commonly deliver malware via malicious attachments or links. Antimalware solutions can identify and block malicious software from reaching corporate devices.
- DNS Authentication: Phishers commonly send emails that impersonate emails from inside the organization or from trusted companies. DMARC, DKIM, and SPF (email authentication methods) help to ensure that emails originated from their alleged source.
- Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA): Attackers may use phishing emails to steal user credentials, which can be used to take over accounts, potentially to send spear phishing emails. MFA makes it harder for an attacker to use these stolen credentials by requiring access to another factor as well.
Types of Phishing Protection Solutions
Companies have access to a wide variety of solutions designed to protect against phishing attacks. Some phishing protection and prevention capabilities to look for include:
- Email Scanner: Emails are the most common vector for delivering phishing content. Email scanners can use a combination of signatures and machine learning to identify emails containing malicious content or that are part of a Business Email Compromise (BEC) attack.
- Sandboxed Execution: Not all malware can be detected by scanning an email’s attachments. Sandbox environments detonate suspicious files and monitor their behavior for signs of malicious functionality before delivering the file to the intended user.
- Content Disarm and Reconstruction (CDR): Phishers commonly use Microsoft Office and other documents to deliver malware via macros and other built-in functionality. CDR solutions can deconstruct a document, remove malicious functionality, and rebuild a sanitized version that can be safely sent on to the intended recipient.
- Endpoint Security: Phishing attacks are commonly used as an initial access vector for delivering malware to a target system. Endpoint security solutions — such as endpoint detection and response (EDR) — can aid in identifying and remediating these malware infections.
- Mobile Security: Mobile devices are a growing target for phishing attacks over email, SMS, and social media and corporate collaboration apps. Mobile security solutions are essential to managing the risk that phishing poses to an organization’s mobile devices.
Harmony Email Security Anti-Phishing Solution
Phishing attacks are one of the most common and dangerous cyber threats that many organizations face. Phishing emails are relatively easy to develop and are highly scalable attacks, enabling cyber threat actors to send out many phishing messages in the hope of a single click. A successful phishing attack can lead to compromised credentials, malware infections, data loss, or financial theft.
While employee education is an important component of a corporate anti-phishing strategy, it isn’t enough. Modern phishing attacks are a sophisticated threat, and, eventually, someone will fall for the phishing attack. Employee education must be backed up by anti-phishing solutions. By reducing the volume of phishing emails that reach employees’ inboxes, an organization decreases the risk of a successful attack.
Check Point and Avanan have developed an anti-phishing solution that offers robust protection against phishing emails that works together with the rest of an organization’s security architecture. To learn more about how Check Point Harmony Email and Collaboration can help enhance your organization’s anti-phishing defenses, sign up for a free demo today.