Email admins considering cloud anti-spam services have a lot of features to evaluate and decisions to make. Messaging hygiene is about much more than just blocking spam. If you are looking to deploy a cloud anti-spam solution, here are six must-have features you want to be sure are in any cloud anti-spam solution you consider.
1. Strong protection
Spam gets the most attention, but malware can be the most dangerous immediate threat to your users’ mailboxes and phishing can have the most devastating long-term impact. Make sure your cloud anti-spam solution also filters out phishing messages and malware. Look for the services that use multiple anti-virus engines for the maximum effectiveness in blocking malware, and that know about and can block phishing messages using both known senders, and reputation based lists.
2. Inbound and Outbound Filtering
You need to protect your customers as well as your reputation, so make sure your cloud anti-spam solution can filter your outbound mail with all the same protections as it does your inbound mail. The last thing you want to do is have a user with an out of compliance laptop send an infected attachment to your number one customer, and outbound filtering helps to make sure that cannot happen.
3. Daily digests
Blocking bad mail is all well and good, but occasionally a good message gets blocked too. These false positives can be critical messages from current or prospective customers, or important notifications from other service providers. Don’t let a false positive die in some unmonitored queue. Choose the cloud anti-spam service that sends a daily digest to each user and make certain your users know how to review those emails for any messages that were blocked by mistake. Having each user police their own messages is much more effective than expecting one or two IT people to parse a folder of hundreds or thousands of messages in the hope that something will stand out.
4. User Self-Service
One of the biggest issues with spam filtering is that when a user doesn’t get a message they were expecting, they are going to open a critical incident with the help desk to find the missing message. That’s not good for customer service or technician sanity. Avoid the daily fire drills from missing messages by choosing a solution that offers a user self-service portal, so that your users can quickly and easily check their own personal quarantine folders for the missing message.
5. Logging and reporting
Email is arguably the single most critical application on your network and is almost certainly the most widely and heavily used one across all your departments and users. With so much data flowing through email, the need for detailed logging and robust reporting is significant. Make sure you select a cloud anti-spam service that offers good logging, and can run both scheduled and ad hoc reports as needed.
Archiving may not have much to do with anti-spam protections, but when all of your email is flowing through your cloud anti-spam provider that’s a natural place to implement archiving. With the growing amount of legislation and regulation indicating a need for archiving, selecting a cloud anti-spam solution today that can provide you email archiving if you need it tomorrow is a great way to plan for the future needs of the business.
Cloud anti-spam solutions are a great option for email admins looking to add protections and additional services to their messaging infrastructure. When you are considering the solutions available to you, ensuring that they offer these six must-have features will help you narrow down your selections so you can evaluate only the best of the best.
This guest post was provided by Casper Manes on behalf of GFI Software Ltd. GFI is a leading software developer that provides a single source for network administrators to address their network security, content security and messaging needs. Learn more about the benefits of using cloud anti-spam.
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