“I live in my inbox.” We’ve heard it said time and time again by IT professionals. Your email inbox is probably the first and last thing you check each day. And there’s always something waiting for you inside. IT tickets, meeting agendas, budget documents, questions from your team … the list goes on.
So much business happens in the inbox, making it vitally important to be sure it’s secure. According to the State of Email Security report by Mimecast, cyberthreats increased in 2021. In fact, the report said, 2021 was the worst year yet for cybersecurity.
The Mimecast report surveyed 1,400 global IT decision-makers. A whopping 96% of the organizations were targeted by an email phishing attempt. And three out of four organizations were attacked by ransomware. What’s worse, nearly four out of 10 of the organizations didn’t recover the data they lost.
While these stats are harrowing, there are steps you can take to prevent yourself and your IT team from falling victim to these threats. First, you must put processes and security measures in place to protect your inbox as well as all communication found inside.
What you need to secure your email inbox
Whether you’re an IT professional tasked with protecting inboxes enterprise-wide or an end user trying to up your email security game, a few critical components are necessary to make it happen:
- Solid password management: There’s often one thing standing between a cybercriminal and the critical proprietary information in your inbox — a password. You can protect your data by implementing solid password management policies. For example, passwords should be complex and kept in a locked password management tool. You should also configure two-factor authentication.
- Email encryption: Emails should be encrypted end-to-end. This helps ensure that only the true recipient of any message you send can view your communications. All computers and email accounts should include this security feature.
- Security policies and procedures: Components such as encryption and password management won’t do any good unless everyone who uses email in your organization understands their importance. Security policies and procedures such as those involving email usage and retention should be created, shared and enforced.
While there are plenty of other components you can use to protect your email, these are non-negotiable. And if you’re not sure where to start, the experts on the TechRepublic Premium team are here to help. Below, you’ll find four key resources you can use to take your email security to the next level.
While communication tools such as email are convenient, they can also be dangerous. For example, communications can easily be mismanaged or misused, leading to serious data loss and threat potential.
This is why an electronic communication policy is critical. This policy provides guidelines for the appropriate use of any electronic communication, including email.
It covers critical components such as privacy and security, and highlights the importance of keeping communications from falling into the wrong hands. This TechRepublic Premium sample policy can be downloaded and edited to fit your unique needs.
Download the Electronic Communication Policy on TechRepublic Premium
An important part of any security initiative is employee communication. IT professionals often need to share important information with employees regarding security processes, updates, potential threats and more.
Unfortunately, this process of sharing information can take some serious time. It requires effort to write and rewrite emails each time you need to send info company-wide. This is where these IT security alert templates come in.
This set includes five basic security templates:
- ID badge and visitor requirements
- Remote work guidelines
- Password pointers
- Social engineering tactics
- Download of executable files
Download the IT email templates: Security alerts on TechRepublic Premium
Any time you or your team opens an email or starts a search in a browser, threats abound. This is especially true when proprietary company data is involved. The best way to prevent threats is to put rules in place to reduce risks.
This sample internet and email usage policy offers guidelines to ensure everyone who uses email and the internet within your enterprise follow safe practices. Included are guidelines for various electronic communication types, including messaging services, email and social media.
Download the Internet and email usage policy on TechRepublic Premium
Passwords stand in the gap between your data and malicious access. Compromised passwords can lead to serious cyberthreats, which often result in dangerous data breaches. The only way to ensure passwords are kept confidential and used properly is to enact a password management policy.
This sample password management policy provides guidelines for the consistent and secure management of passwords for IT teams. The policy includes mandates on the use of passwords and how they’re generated, stored, used, and changed.
Download the Password management policy on TechRepublic Premium