Not to be exchanged outside your network

Email encryption can be used to protect sensitive data at rest and in transmission. But what if email shouldn’t be sent in the first place? Even if you exhaust your training options, mistakes are going to happen, because no one is perfect.

However, by employing a data loss prevention (DLP) solution, you can identify and minimize that risk and, more importantly, protect your institution from associated costs such as fraud protection, regulatory fines and potential civil lawsuits.

In the past, DLP has been known for its costly, long implementation timelines. By focusing on the most used communication tool — email — and using a single application solution, IT can decrease the cost dramatically, reduce the deployment timeline from months to hours and roll out security with minimal impact on IT staff.

A DLP solution will scan all outbound emails prior to leaving your institution’s network using standard policy filters, such as HIPAA or Social Security number, or custom policy filters. If a policy is triggered, the email is sent to a quarantine system, where IT or the user’s manager can release the email or notify the user that it cannot be exchanged.

Balancing needs with different security

Given how much we find ourselves clicking the “Send” button, preventing email breaches can seem daunting, but institutions can mitigate the risk by leveraging both encryption and DLP — on top of adequate IT training and a well-rounded arsenal of security solutions, of course.

By categorizing the type of email being sent and using the appropriate security, you can proactively secure varying sensitive information and implement the right protection without unnecessary interference for your institution.

Nigel Johnson is an IT Security and Encryption Industry executive at Zix Corporation .

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