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Total Control Email Security

Reflexion’s antispam and email security service provides the configurability that IT solution providers need to address a wide range of customer requirements, with the automation and simplicity that end users love.

Key features:

  • Blocks spam, viruses and volume-based attacks before they reach the corporate network
  • Address-on-the-Fly™ technology preserves the integrity of one’s primary email address and identifies address-sharing and the sources of spam
  • Automatic inbound email queuing assures email continuity in the event of a local server outage
  • Outbound email filtering protects one’s reputation and helps to avoid IP address blacklisting

How Reflexion Works

Inbound and outbound email is processed as shown in the below diagram. Deployment of the service requires a simple MX record change to route email through Reflexion’s servers. Reflexion can work with any local email server, and doesn’t require the installation of any server, client software, or hardware at the customer’s location.

There are three main points:

  • RTC provides many different layers of protection for defense-in-depth of one’s inbox.
  • The service is uniquely configurable, providing the versatility that email administrators and solution providers need to address the widest range of end-user requirements. Mail for a specific user will only be subjected to the tests dictated by their configuration (or if one is not specified, by the default enterprise configuration).
  • The architecture is extensible so that new defenses can be added as they become available or desirable.

Key Differentiators

Reflexion offers powerful and effective capabilities not found in any other solution on the market.

A wide range of capabilities and blended defense provide maximum user control.

Email users often have a favorite method of dealing with unwanted content and senders. Some people like the precision of allow/block lists to authorize or block specific senders or domains (often called “whitelisting” and “blacklisting”); others prefer the simplicity of content filtering; still others like the added effectiveness of challenge-response methods.

A similar range of preferences exists for handling the messages classified as spam. Some users want a daily email summary of blocked email; others want to examine their spam quarantine folder directly; still others may choose to divert their daily quarantine summary to an assistant for checking. Some may not want to be bothered with checking spam folders at all, and elect to have any offending mail vaporized.

Reflexion’s service has the versatility to accommodate all of these preferences, and more. Importantly, capabilities can be blended to provide more effective protection than can be achieved by using any one technique independently. In particular, customer experience shows that by combining content-independent techniques with content-based filtering techniques, Reflexion yields dramatic improvements in user control over inbox access.

Address-on-the-Fly™ protects the user’s primary address.

Address-on-the-Fly™ (AOTF) provides users with a unique, liberating capability for disclosing email aliases as alternatives to their primary address. Its simple implementation does not require any user interaction with the service, and it spares the use of one’s primary address from public or uncontrolled disclosures that may result in new sources of spam. All AOTFs automatically resolve to the user’s single inbox.

AOTF-generic-shadowThis popular feature provides an effective means of controlling inbox access, blocking spam, making phishing attacks immediately evident, and preserving the long-term integrity of the user’s primary email address.

Savvy email users have long recognized the value of using multiple email addresses, and general awareness is growing. In fact, many consumers now employ multiple addresses, albeit by maintaining separate email accounts. AOTF brings the power of this technique to a single inbox in a fully automated fashion.

An in-message control panel informs and empowers the user.

Reflexion’s unique in-message control panel provides a simple and intuitive means for bi-directional communication between the user and the service, presenting the user with message-specific options for controlling inbox access.

Reflexion uses the control panel to identify the envelope To: address in order to bring out information about the message. For example, a message recipient can see when one party has shared the recipient’s address with another party. Reflexion users employ the control panel to communicate with the service, amending their access policies for specific senders and addresses.

Experience confirms that users find the control panel to be simple, helpful, and effective. It’s easy for users to understand, the choices are intuitive, and most of all, users like the ability to take concrete, immediate action to squash a spammer.

Some users also employ the control panel as a safe alternative to the unsubscribe function in many emails, which some people no longer trust out of fear that it merely confirms a valid address and alerts a spammer to a “live” recipient.

Control panels are available in English, Spanish, French, German, Brazilian Portuguese, Dutch, Italian and Chinese, with Russian and Hebrew on the way.

Outbound email auditing helps protect one’s brand and avoid email disruptions.

No legitimate correspondent or domain owner ever wants to be in the position of inadvertently sending out spam and viruses. It’s not only embarrassing, but can damage one’s reputation or brand. It can also lead to severe operational disruptions if one’s email server gets “blacklisted,” as this dreaded outcome prevents the delivery of all mail, good and bad, to all recipients at domains that utilize the specific blacklist to preemptively block senders deemed to be abusive or careless. This can be especially bad for Internet Service Providers (ISPs), as a blacklisted server affects all domains supported by that server, whether responsible for the outgoing spam or not.

Reflexion Outbound Mail Auditing (ROMA) addresses these serious concerns by inspecting outbound messages using pattern matching, statistical heuristics, and fingerprint filtering and scanning techniques. As outbound mail is received by Reflexion’s servers, each message is passed through a series of checks to determine conformance with message size and volume limits, to identify message type (for example, to isolate bounce messages to avoid “blowback spam”), and to scan for spam and viruses.

Each outbound message is then routed according to its categorization. For example, policy-offending or suspicious mail is placed in a quarantine queue, while non-delivery receipts are routed through a server that is dedicated to such traffic. If that server becomes blacklisted, it won’t jeopardize one’s operations. Messages found to be spam or to contain viruses are also placed in the quarantine.

When a message fails a security or policy check, the network administrator is automatically alerted to the offending or suspicious content. These alerts specify the reason for placing the message in the quarantine; for instance, because the message content exceeded a size or “spamminess” threshold set by the originating domain, or it contained a virus, or the volume of mail from the specific sender exceeded a specified message-rate-over-time threshold.

These alerts can be customized as appropriate for one’s specific policies. From these alerts, administrators can take several actions, such as releasing a specific message for delivery, vaporizing the message, or logging into the Reflexion administration console to dispatch multiple messages. In addition to alerting, Reflexion provides an optional branded bounce notification to the end user to inform them of a violation of policy, or in the case of an ISP, of a contractual stipulation, such as a limit on the amount of email that can be sent during a 30-day trial period.

ROMA provides the capability to implement rate limiting for individual users, blended with content and domain filtering, and controlled through a user interface. For example, if a user sends 20,000 messages in a specified time period, x% of which exceed a pre-set content-scoring threshold, Reflexion will queue those message as suspicious and send an automated alert to the email administrator or ISP for review. Reflexion will also profile the standard email usage patterns of individual users and compile a report. This report can help to identify suspicious senders or zombie PCs so that remediation can begin, or so that an ISP can take necessary steps such as contacting and/or canceling the customer in order to avoid any damage to its IP addresses.

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