|Basic Computer Security Tips: Review: GFI MailEssentials|
|Review: GFI MailEssentials|
Email is not just for communication anymore. Sure, you can use it to promote your products, or issue staff memos, but there is also a darker side to email. Hackers use malicious HTML scripts, phishing attacks and even spam to infect your network with malware and steal confidential data.
So how do you protect yourself? Antivirus software is a start. However, email can create some unique problems for your network by devouring bandwidth and clogging up inboxes, so an anti-spam solution is also very important.
What we wanted to know is will GFI MailEssentials keep you safe?
The Anti-spam Edition
Letís begin our analysis with the Anti-spam edition and look at how this can keep your inboxes unclogged and prevent malicious attacks that use email as an attack vector.
First of all, this provides a considerable array of anti-spam technologies that you donít often see packaged into a single solution. There is greylisting, SPF, directory harvest protection, IP reputation filtering, spam URL filtering and Bayesian filtering.
The Bayesian filtering is particularly unique as it allows for your anti-spam software to actually learn and get better. Before you get too excited, we are not talking about AI here, but rather an advanced mathematical algorithm that goes through a two week compulsory learning process.
The filter also learns from your outbound mail to continually refine and enhance its protection. In addition, it continually updates itself from a central GFI database of known spam data. The software examines the whole message, not just the keywords or signatures and has multilingual support.
We also liked the automatic whitelist management. Every time you send an outbound mail, the software auto-updates your whitelist with the details to provide you with effective protection and to reduce the risk of false positives. However, if you want to tweak the list, you can also make additions based on domain names, email addresses and keywords.
Another feature of GFI MailEssentials that caught our eye was the user-managed spam quarantine. The software can be configured to send regular reports to end users, listing any spam that may have been blocked for them. The users are then able to access the quarantine area via a web based interface and manually release any emails. This is advantageous for system administrators as it allows end users to manage their own spam quarantine, eliminating the need to manually review everyoneís spam.
Email detected as spam can be deleted, moved to a specific folder, forwarded to a mailbox or public folder for review, quarantined or a combination of several actions as required. This provides excellent flexibility in handling spam.
This edition also includes a host of other features to fend off spam, such as SPF to block spoofed emails, greylisting, directory harvesting, and DNSBLs to stop botnet spamming.
As a result, the Anti-spam edition of GFI MailEssentails offers superior spam protection for your email and corporate inboxes.
The EmailSecurity Edition
With spam held at bay by the Anti-spam edition, we turned to the EmailSecurity Edition to see how this would block viruses.
Right off the bat GFI MailEssentials stands out with support for multiple antivirus engines. Normally, each antivirus engine has a different response time to each new virus. However, by combining them you have unparalleled protection that ensures you always have the quickest response to every threat.
The EmailSecurity Edition ships with the GFI VIPRE and BitDefender antivirus engines and also has updates for one year included. However, you can also add in the McAfee, Kaspersky and Norman antivirus engines to give you intense protection. This ensures you always have the right protection in place at the right time.
There is a powerful decompression engine contained within GFI MailEssentials that allows you to scan a variety of archive types, including determining if archives are password protected or corrupted. You can also determine the number of files in an archive, and their uncompressed size.
The Trojan and Executable Scanner in GFI MailEssentials is able to deconstruct an executable, check its code against a database of malicious actions, and thus determine if it is safe or not. Any executables that appear to execute suspicious commands are quarantined.
HTML scripts, embedded in emails, have become a popular vector for attack. The EmailSecurity Edition sanitizes emails, removing any scripts before sending them on to the user.
The malware quarantine section has some very useful features for administrators. There is web based access, allowing the approval or rejection of emails from anywhere, while email based quarantine access forms and RSS feeds that have links for reviewing, approving or deleting quarantined emails provide administrators with the ability to handle email quickly and simply.
GFI MailEssentials also provides granular, user based email content policy enforcement. It allows you to configure rules based on keywords, regular expressions, attachments and email headers. This greatly facilitates your ability to scan for offensive content, while protecting your system against malicious or accidental email data leaks.
There are a host of other features such as the email exploits scanner that specifically protects against attacks that use email as a vector, spyware protection, flexibility in dealing with malware, Norman sandbox integration, as well as custom quarantine filters and searches. Combined, they make this software one of the best in class.
Could we find anything wrong? We tried hard and did our best to uncover things we didnít like and, honestly, it wasnít easy.
Some people might not be keen on the web based interface and dashboard. Others will love it. We know this doesnít have universal appeal, so we are listing it just the same.
The software also lacks multi-lingual support. We know that it is coming soon, but for now itís available in English only.
If you want to keep your network safe from intruders using email as an attack vector, streamline your inboxes and generally keep out of trouble, then GFI MailEssentials is one of the best solutions you are going to find. By combining multiple antivirus engines, advanced Bayesian filtering, as well as many other technologies, GFI MailEssentails also helps administrators keep things running smooth with its simple interfaces.
It has plenty of customizable features and highly accurate filtering that reduces false positives. We think that GFI MailEssentails is certainly a top shelf solution for todayís constantly evolving security landscape.
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|Basic Computer Security Tips: Review: GFI MailEssentials|