Mimecast Secure Email Gateway with Targeted Threat Protection
Starts @ $3.50 per user per month for 50 users
Strengths: Feature-rich solution with a high success rate for blocking malicious email.
Weaknesses: No on-premise options available for clients with compliance requirements; setup can be a bit challenging with full feature set.
Verdict: Recommended solution to fit into your layered security approach to solve phase 1 of the ransomware stack. This specialized solution would be a great addition to any organization taking steps to protect the email threat vector.
It is no surprise that Mimecast returns to the head of this issue's list with its strong performance in the anti-ransomware market. Mimecast is a solid solution that appears to back up their claims of stopping all malware delivered through email before it reaches your end users. With Mimecast's cloud solution sitting between email endpoints, it is quite easy to see how it maintains an impressive success rate.
Email is a common delivery mechanism that attackers will use in an attempt to get inside your organization. Mimecast takes a layered approach to protecting this vector. First, Mimecast checks all inbound emails for indicators of spam; these emails commonly contain dangerous links or files. Then the solution quickly scans attachments and removes dangerous attachments from your emails. Next, Mimecast can run your attachments through its unique sandbox technology to see if they are indeed safe. As a last line of defense, Mimecast has the option to turn your files into "flat" pdf documents. This allows your end users to process that invoice or read the pdf content without worries of embedded code. This is a great solution for most individuals as they don't actually need the original document to get their job done, just the information contained inside.
In addition to email attachments, Mimecast also looks through the URLs embedded inside the email itself. These URLs are scanned and marked "safe" or "unsafe" and sent to the recipient. In addition to alerting on potentially dangerous URLs, Mimecast provides end-user training to help educate your user base.
Mimecast's administrative portal offers a minimalistic, easy to use dashboard that puts information at your fingertips and allows you to drill down to get more details when you need them. You can quickly see the number of attachments and URLs that were removed and the top users that could benefit from additional training.
Mimecast offers three levels of support packages with their products that include phone and email support and vary from 8x5 support to 24x7 with varying SLAs. While their support staff is knowledgeable and support requests are turned around quickly; most of the administrators we have spoken with have great things to say about their online community-based knowledgebase. With more than 25,000 active members in the community, most of your questions can be answered with a quick search of this user-friendly site.
In addition to providing protection, Mimecast also has email archival capabilities. Since this solution sits in-front of your existing SMTP server, they have a great potential to assist in your business continuity planning. Mimecast offers a clean and simple end-user portal to review your email and access the blocked attachments if needed.
Mimecast is a solid product that is focused on delivering clean email to end users. While most products in the "ransomware" space are trying to expand their footprint to cover more threat vectors, Mimecast focuses on one area and continues to excel.
by Mike Diehl; tested by Mike Diehl & Matt Hreben