What is Email Security?

Email security is the safeguarding of email accounts and communications to prevent unauthorized access, data loss, and compromise. Business need to create protocols to guard against malware, spam and other cyber threats.

To reinforce email security, organizations can create protocols and employ solutions that guard against harmful elements like malware, spam, and deceptive phishing attempts. By prioritizing these measures, businesses ensure the confidentiality and integrity of their digital correspondence.

How Secure is Email?

Email, a widely embraced communication medium, is not without its security vulnerabilities. The level of security inherent in email systems is contingent on diverse factors:

  • Encryption, a fundamental security measure, safeguards message content, but its utilization varies, leaving emails potentially susceptible during transmission.
  • Phishing and malware threats exploit human susceptibility to deceive users and compromise systems. 
  • User behavior plays a pivotal role, such as clicking on unknown links and downloading attachments from untrusted sources.
  • Weak password practices contribute to security breaches. 

Employing end-to-end encryption enhances security by ensuring that only intended recipients can decipher messages, requiring compatible tools for both parties. Moreover, the security of stored emails is paramount; inadequately protected email servers can result in data breaches. 

In conclusion, despite the evolution of email security, it isn’t entirely immune to risks. Organizations and users must adopt proactive best practices, strong passwords, two-factor authentication, and encryption to fortify their defense against phishing attempts and sensitive data exposure.

Types of Email Attacks

Understanding the various forms of email attacks is essential to fortify your online security defenses. Here are some of the most common:

Data Exfiltration

Data exfiltration is a sophisticated threat. Attackers adeptly infiltrate an organization’s email system, surreptitiously pilfering sensitive data, often going unnoticed until the damage is done.


Malicious software, or malware, infiltrates computer systems surreptitiously, wreaking havoc without user consent. Often spread through deceptive email attachments or links, malware can compromise data integrity and system functionality.


A widespread nuisance, spam inundates inboxes with unsolicited and often irrelevant messages. Though seemingly innocuous, spam can carry malware or phishing attempts, posing a potential risk to security.


Among the most cunning tactics, phishing involves impersonating reputable organizations to deceive recipients into divulging sensitive data. These deceptive emails exploit trust, making users unwitting accomplices in their own data compromise.

Denial of Service (DoS)

With a barrage of emails, a DoS attack overwhelms email servers, causing them to crash under the weight of the influx. This disrupts communication channels and hampers productivity.

Account Takeover

In an account takeover, cybercriminals gain unauthorized access to an individual’s email account. This illicit access is then exploited to send malicious content, steal data, or manipulate recipients into further compromise.

Identity Theft

Through email, cybercriminals can pilfer personal information, including names, addresses, and social security numbers, to fuel identity theft schemes.


Attackers assume the guise of established brands, aiming to deceive recipients into revealing confidential information. Impersonation preys on familiarity, making vigilance crucial. Familiarity with these email attack variants empowers users to identify and evade potential threats, bolstering the protection of email domains and sensitive data. 

Email Security Policies

Establishing robust email security policies is the foundation of safeguarding sensitive information. Such policies lay out guidelines and protocols that govern the usage, transmission, and protection of emails within an organization.

By clearly defining who has access to what data, implementing encryption for confidential content, and outlining rules for handling attachments and links, businesses can significantly reduce the risk of unauthorized access and data breaches.

Additionally, regularly updated policies also ensure that employees are informed about evolving threats, making them better equipped to identify and thwart potential cyberattacks. Moreover, consistent enforcement of these policies demonstrates a commitment to data protection and can help organizations adhere to industry compliance standards.

The Benefits of Email Security for Businesses

Email security is more than just a precaution. It’s a critical investment in the reputation, trust, and operational continuity of any businesses. By strengthening security measures, businesses can protect their intellectual property, customer records, and financial data from falling into the wrong hands.

Enhanced email security also helps maintain the credibility of an organization’s communication, preventing hackers from impersonating the brand to spread malware or misinformation.

By securing their digital interactions, businesses can foster customer trust, ensure regulatory compliance, and minimize the financial and reputational fallout that often accompanies security breaches.

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Email Security Best Practices

Here are our key best practices to enhance your email security:

  1. Use Strong Passwords – Employ complex passwords with a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols. Avoid using easily guessable information like birthdays or names.
  1. Enable Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) – Implement 2FA to add an extra layer of protection. This requires a second form of verification, such as a code sent to your phone, in addition to your password.
  1. Beware of Phishing – Be cautious when clicking on links or downloading attachments from unfamiliar senders. Verify the legitimacy of emails and avoid sharing sensitive information through email.
  1. Regularly Update Software – Keep your email client, operating system, and security software up-to-date to ensure protection against the latest threats.
  1. Encrypt Sensitive Emails – Utilize end-to-end encryption for sensitive emails to ensure that only the intended recipient can access the content.
  1. Educate Employees – Provide training to employees about recognizing phishing attempts, handling suspicious emails, and practicing secure email habits.
  1. Use Secure Networks – Avoid accessing emails on public Wi-Fi networks, as they can be vulnerable to hacking attempts.
  1. Implement Email Filtering – Employ advanced email filtering solutions to detect and block spam, phishing attempts, and malware-laden attachments.
  1. Carry Out Regular Backups – Regularly back up your email data to prevent loss in case of security breaches or system failures.
  1. Secure Devices – Ensure that devices that access emails are protected with strong passwords, encryption, and updated security software.
  1. Authenticate Senders – Use authentication protocols like SPF, DKIM, and DMARC to verify the authenticity of email senders and prevent spoofing.
  1. Limit Personal Information – Avoid sharing personal or sensitive information through email, especially if it’s not encrypted.
  1. Stay Informed – Keep up to date with the latest email security trends, threats, and solutions to adapt your practices accordingly.

By adhering to these email security best practices, you can significantly mitigate the risks associated with cyber threats, enhance data protection, and foster a safer digital communication environment for both individuals and organizations.

Secure Your Networks with Perimeter 81

The significance of email security today cannot be overstated. Businesses must implement resilient policies and develop clear strategies to prevent cyber threats via email. Perimeter81’s DNS solutions are designed to do just that, enabling IT teams to easily manage and alter their organization’s web filter, providing protection against malware and phishing campaigns across all networks and environments.

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What are the Different Types of Email Security?
Different types of email security encompass a spectrum of defenses aimed at shielding electronic communications from a diverse range of threats. From robust authentication mechanisms, end-to-end encryption, and advanced spam filters to vigilant employee training and policies, each layer contributes to fortifying email systems against phishing, malware, data breaches, and other cyber risks, safeguarding both sensitive information and organizational integrity.
Why isn’t Email Secure?
Email’s lack of inherent security stems from its origins in open protocols developed without the anticipation of today’s sophisticated cyber threats. Vulnerabilities persist due to factors like the absence of default encryption, susceptibility to phishing attacks exploiting human behavior, and the challenge of verifying sender authenticity. Additionally, the diverse range of email providers and user practices creates a varied landscape of security practices. These factors collectively contribute to the ongoing insecurity of email communication, necessitating additional layers of protection to counteract evolving cyber risks.
Is There Such a Thing as Secure Email?
“Secure email” encompasses a variety of protective measures aimed at enhancing communication safety. Typically, secure email entails utilizing reputable secure email services, such as Secure Socket Layers (SSL), which establishes a secure link between a dedicated web server and a browser, ensuring enhanced security during transmission.
Why is Gmail Not Secure?
While Gmail employs encryption for your emails, it can’t assure absolute security consistently. This is due to the use of standard TLS (Transport Layer Security) encryption as Gmail’s default. While TLS safeguards emails during transmission from sender to recipient, its effectiveness depends on whether the recipient’s email service also supports TLS.
Can Someone Intercept your Emails?
Attackers can compromise email accounts through phishing or other methods, granting cybercriminals access to your email communications. During transmission, email messages and attachments are susceptible to interception on the email network. By default, emails lack encryption as they journey from your email servers to recipients, leaving them vulnerable. Consequently, if hackers breach this data, they can gain unauthorized access to your emails and attachments.
How Do I Stop My Email Being Tracked?
Here are some of the things you can do to stop your email from being tracked:

1. Opt for Enhanced Tracking Protection – Utilize Proton Mail equipped with enhanced tracking protection to effectively halt email tracking.

2. Employ Email Aliases – Conceal your email address by utilizing aliases to curtail email tracking.

3. Disable Automatic Image Loading – Prevent email tracking by deactivating the automatic loading of images.

4. Utilize Browser Extensions – Consider browser extensions as a means to counter email tracking.

5. Harness a VPN – Enhance your email privacy using a Virtual Private Network (VPN).

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Supercharge your email security today with Perimeter 81.