Zix Blog

Office for Civil Rights Comments on Strong Authentication for HIPAA

Thu, 11/17/2016 - 01:15 by Dena Bauckman
On November 7, 2016, the Office for Civil Rights (OCR), the Health and Human Services (HHS) office responsible for enforcing the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), issued its latest newsletter titled “What Type of Authentication is Right for You?” In the newsletter, the OCR focuses on the risk of weak authentication as a cause of recent healthcare-related cybercrimes. The OCR suggests that covered entities and business associates conduct an enterprise-wide risk assessment and consider implementing stronger authentication to protect electronic personal...
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Hacking of Legal Firms Reinforces Obligation and Need to Protect Sensitive Client Data

Tue, 03/29/2016 - 23:30 by ZixCorp
Data breaches are a common headline. So much so that we may begin to glance over them, until an incident relevant to our personal lives wakes us up. Law firms are experiencing just that with breaking news about hackers who targeted Cravath Swaine & Moore LLP and Weil Gotshal & Manges LLP, which represent Wall Street banks and Fortune 500 companies. From managing lawsuits to negotiating mergers and acquisitions, Cravath and Weil collect, store and exchange massive amounts of sensitive information that is valuable to both criminals and competition. The same is true of any law firm...
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Zix’s Strength in Community Shines for Blue Cross Blue Shield Customers and Their Members

Wed, 10/19/2016 - 10:53 by ZixCorp
Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) organizations have an influential and prominent presence in healthcare, serving one in every three Americans who rely on their coverage for quality care. With such a profound responsibility to people and communities across the U.S., we are incredibly proud that more than 30 BCBS organizations rely on Zix and the strength of our community. How does Zix help BCBS organizations and their members? Email is as secure as a postcard traveling through the postal service. And just as healthcare companies and business associates can’t exchange protected health...
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Email Encryption Needs to Be a Seamless Part of Our Lives

Mon, 10/03/2016 - 13:31 by Dave Wagner
Today, a Wall Street Journal article highlighted recent email breaches and featured the perspectives of a number of business executives who are rightfully concerned. Some are limiting their use of email, while another considers the insecurity of email a cost of doing business. The article continued by weaving in a summary of the risks of email from security consultant Ryan Lackey who described email as “a 35-to-40-year-old system that does not have security built in from day one. You’re basically putting the most secure data into a system that was never designed for it.”...
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Why is SMTP Strict Transport Security not enough?

Tue, 04/05/2016 - 10:26 by Dave Robertson
In the first post in our SMTP Strict Transport Security (STS) standard series, we reviewed the history of TLS, the need to improve its security and how the new, proposed STS standard addresses some of the faults of TLS. But does STS protect every email and every email user? At the time an employee sends an email, there will be no way to know if all of the recipients can be reached via a secure TLS connection. For most organizations, just reporting that TLS was not available or bouncing the email will not be acceptable. Organizations need to exchange email; otherwise communication and workflow...
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What You Need to Know about SMTP Strict Transport Security

Mon, 03/28/2016 - 12:43 by Dave Robertson
Recently, a number of articles (like this one in InformationWeek ) touched on the new, proposed SMTP Strict Transport Security (STS) standard and how it will help secure email communication. Zix applauds the development of this new standard and its potential to address some of the current security vulnerabilities of TLS. But for an in-depth perspective of STS, we need to understand what STS is changing, how STS benefits email users and what security gaps remain despite this great advancement. To get us started, let’s review the methods and more importantly the flaws of TLS. TLS (...
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Securing Data Three Ways: At Rest, Use and In Motion

Mon, 02/01/2016 - 11:32 by ZixCorp
Sensitive data, both personal and corporate, is more vulnerable today than ever before. Pick up any recent newspaper, and odds are that some sort of data breach or vulnerability has occurred. Social Security and credit card numbers, corporate trade secrets, financial news – any data that is stored, used and transmitted online and through connected devices can be exploited and monetized by a skilled and motivated hacker. But these threats aren’t just external. The threat of a disgruntled or even rushed employee is as real as the threat from outside attackers, especially if the...
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Zix Webinar featuring Forrester Research looked at Hosted Email Encryption

Fri, 01/29/2016 - 11:03 by Neil Farquharson
Guest Speaker Kelley Mak of Forrester Research “The use of email encryption…shows your business partners, your customers, your employees that you take security seriously.” These are the words of Kelley Mak of Forrester Research during our live webcast last Thursday. During our one hour webinar, I posited that many organizations are choosing hosted email and hosted encryption that reduce costs due to organizations not needing to maintain in-house infrastructure any more. The costs are predictable and manageable. One of my takeaways from Kelley’s presentation was that...
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The Director of the NSA Endorses Encryption

Mon, 01/25/2016 - 17:47 by Neil Farquharson
Admiral Michael S. Rogers Over the weekend, I caught up with the recent activity at the Atlantic Council in Washington, D.C. They’d managed to entice Admiral Michael S. Rogers, who is not only the Commander of U.S. Cyber Command, but also the current Director of the National Security Agency (NSA) to appear. During a live presentation followed by an hour long interview, Admiral Rogers displayed great passion about a number of issues, including the “increased apertures of exposure” created by the constant connectivity provided by mobile devices; describing the Internet of...
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The Email Encryption Placebo Effect – A Bitter Pill

Thu, 01/14/2016 - 11:10 by Neil Farquharson
Truth is often stranger than fiction and I love reading about bizarre true facts. For example, did you know that the unicorn is the national animal of Scotland? Or that Saudi Arabia imports camels from Australia, or that Alaska is simultaneously the most northerly, westerly and easterly state in the USA? Over the holiday, I read about a study that found that branded placebo pills are more effective than, and have fewer negative side effects than, generic placebos. That is, if you give all the patients placebos, the ones who receive placebos labeled Tylenol, Advil or similar will not only feel...
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