A secure and efficient email solution is one of the most vital resources of any business organization since majority of outward and inward communications depend on a secure and high-performance email platform. In spite of the advent of several new methods of communications, email continues to be highly sought after by professionals across the globe.

Businesses must decide whether they should be self-hosting their email servers or seeking support of a professional email service provider. One needs to understand several aspects of email security before selecting one of the two alternatives. Security of any email platform must be judged from various perspectives in order to understand relevance of in-house email servers or a third-party email hosting platform.

Security from physical threats

Thefts, terrorist attacks, natural calamities and other physical factors can seriously impact email capabilities of an enterprise if the email servers are located at in-house IT infrastructure facilities. Moreover, on-site security measures must be able to prevent unauthorized users from accessing mission critical email resources.

On the other hand, modern data centers leave no stone unturned while planning and implementing high-end security measures including CCTV monitoring, access control devices, mantraps, round the clock armed security guards at all entrances, and much more.

Established data center service providers maintain strict compliance to local as well as international security norms and regulations. The security of physical assets can be divided into the following important categories.

The first and foremost defense of a secure data center facility is its perimeter level security. This includes robust compound walls, electronic surveillance devices, and armed guards just to name a few.

Personnel level security provides access restriction to everyone except the authorized staff of the data center facility. There are various sophisticated measures including biometric cards to make sure that all facilities are seamlessly protected from unauthorized entry of personnel.

All rooms that house servers and computers need to be provided with multiple security levels that take into account data processing facilities and processes. Prevention of threats within the cabinets is usually accomplished by provision of video surveillance, biometric cards and advanced cabinet locking systems.

Security at network level

Empowerment of email platform with network level security is a highly overwhelming job in view of recent rise in malware attacks including ransomware which targeted high profile organizations as well as small businesses. Cyber criminals are focusing on theft of personal credentials and business records to extract millions of dollars from victims.

Network challenges of such grave nature necessitate adoption of sophisticated security measures that consist of multiple layers. Email platform must be supported with facilities to aggressively prevent network challenges. It is necessary to analyze in-house email server facility from this perspective while comparing with external email service providers.

Data protection

Security of email data must be ensured by protection of computer systems and other networking components. You can also look into various aspects of security such as Transport Level Security as well as Secure Socket Layer for assured protection of transmitted data files.

One can also explore possibility of using the latest and more advanced solutions such as AES (Advanced Encryption Standard). Physical data storage initiatives should be aimed at separation and distribution of data to prevent hackers from stealing data pertaining to vital communications. Security of physical data devices can be achieved by implementation of encryption methods in terms of data-storage disks.

Availability and business continuity

Every organization must analyze the importance of business continuity while choosing an email solution platform. If the business email resource cannot afford discontinuity on account of server failure, then the service provider must offer seamless monitoring facilities to maintain unswerving availability of email resource.

Majority of reputable email service providers also offer Service Level Agreements to compensate for loss of business on account of outages. Similarly, users should also examine uptime guarantee by reading Service Level Agreements. Upgrades and maintenance must not impact performance of email solutions.

Onsite expertise

Running onsite email server platform for email is a highly complex job in terms of technicalities. This calls for hiring expert technical professionals to look after domain management, mail transfer protocols, and DNS records to name a few. In absence of right professional expertise, it would be difficult to manage onsite email platforms.

Security of off-premise location

There are multiple issues involved in operating email servers within the enterprise. These include possibility of prolonged downtime due to various acts of God. The memories of Hurricane Sandy are still fresh and no business would be able to withstand an outage of such grave nature.

Many enterprises have already moved their vital IT resources including email servers to secure environments of off-site locations.

In conclusion

Every business counts on a secure and efficient medium of communication. This calls for providing a proper environment for positioning email platforms that guarantee cost efficiency, availability, as well as security of communications. Although, on-site email platform can appear to be more cost efficient alternatives, one should not overlook a multitude of factors that can impact your efficiency of transacting business.

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