CSCU Module 09 Securing Email Communications.pdf

January 5, 2019 | Author: Sandeep Roy | Category: Email Spam, Email, Malware, Public Key Certificate, Computer Virus
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Securing Email Communications Module 9

Simplifying Security. Simplifying  Security.

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Email Security: Malicious Messages 'A Problem For Govt. Too' May 16, 2011

Individuals who are concerned about data loss may be surprised to hear of the of  the number of  hacking attacks attempted on the Treasury. Chancellor George Osborne revealed at the Google Zeitgeist conference on Monday (May 16th) that each month around 20,000 malicious emails are sent to UK government networks. Furthermore, he noted: "During 2010, hostile intelligence agencies made hundreds of serious of  serious and pre‐planned attempts to break into the Treasury's computer system. In fact, it averaged out as more than one attempt per day." As a result of these of  these figures, Mr Osborne pointed out that the Treasury is one of the of  the most targeted by data attacks across the whole of Whitehall. of  Whitehall. Government is not the only area concerned about breaches though, with Square Enix recently confirming that a couple of websites of  websites it is associated with have been attacked. http://www.cryptzone.com

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Email Security: Malicious Messages 'A Problem For Govt. Too' May 16, 2011

Individuals who are concerned about data loss may be surprised to hear of the of  the number of  hacking attacks attempted on the Treasury. Chancellor George Osborne revealed at the Google Zeitgeist conference on Monday (May 16th) that each month around 20,000 malicious emails are sent to UK government networks. Furthermore, he noted: "During 2010, hostile intelligence agencies made hundreds of serious of  serious and pre‐planned attempts to break into the Treasury's computer system. In fact, it averaged out as more than one attempt per day." As a result of these of  these figures, Mr Osborne pointed out that the Treasury is one of the of  the most targeted by data attacks across the whole of Whitehall. of  Whitehall. Government is not the only area concerned about breaches though, with Square Enix recently confirming that a couple of websites of  websites it is associated with have been attacked. http://www.cryptzone.com

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Module Objectives Email Security Procedures

Email System

How to Obtain Digital Certificates?

Email Security

Online Email Encryption Service

Email Security Threats

Email Security Tools

Spamming

Email Security Checklist

Hoax/Chain and Scam Emails

Security Checklist for Checking Emails on Mobile

Email Security Control Layers

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Module Flow

Introduction to Email Security

Email Security Threats

How to Obtain Digital Certificates?

Email Security Tools

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Email Security Procedures

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Email Threat Scenario 2011 Email Spam Intercepted Top 5 Geographies

93.5%

Italy

Denmark

93.2%

Email Virus Intercepted Top 5 Geographies

South Africa

UK

Austria

92.0%

Spain

France

92.0%

Oman

Switzerland

91.5%

Global Spam Rate (89.1%)

1 in 147.2

1 in 164.6

1 in 174.1

1 in 229.0

1 in 237.8

Switzerland

Global Virus Rate (1 in 284.2)

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Email Phish Intercepted Top 5 Geographies

South Africa

UK

Oman

United Arab Emirates

New Zealand

1 in 99.0

1 in 214.8

1 in 341.9

1 in 424.0

1 in 568.1

Global Phish Rate (1 in 444.5)

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How Various Email Systems Work? Email (electronic mail) is a method of  exchanging digital messages from a sender to one or more recipients

Companies such as Microsoft, Yahoo!, Google, and AOL offer free email accounts Email accounts can be accessed from any web browser or a standalone email client such as Microsoft Outlook, Mozilla Thunderbird, etc.

Internet

Sender

Email Clients

Email Server

Email Server

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Email Clients

Receiver

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Email Security No email communication is 100% secure

Insecure emails allow attackers to intercept personal and sensitive information of the user

If not secured, emails sent/received can be forged or read by others

Emails are one of the sources of viruses and various malicious programs

It is necessary to secure emails to have safer communications and to protect privacy

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Module Flow

Introduction to Email Security

Email Security Threats

How to Obtain Digital Certificates?

Email Security Tools

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Email Security Procedures

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Email Security Threats Malicious Email Attachments Attachments may contain a virus, Trojan, worms, keylogger, etc., and opening such attachments infects the computer

Malicious User Redirection Mails may contain links that websites hosting malwares and pornographic material

Phishing Phishing mails lure victims to provide personal data

Hoax/Chain Mail

Spamming

The user may receive hoax emails that contain false information telling him/her to forward the mail

The user may receive spam mails may contain malware allowing attackers to take control of the user computer

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Malicious Email Attachments 

  Email attachments are major email security threats as they offers attackers easiest and most powerful ways to attack a PC



  Most malicious attachments install a virus, Trojan, spyware or any other kind of  malware code as soon as you open them

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Email Attachments: Caution Save and scan all email attachments before opening them

Check if the email is from one of  your contacts

Do not open attachments with suspicious or unknown file extensions Example: *.exe, *.vbs,*.bat,*.ini, *.bin, *.com, *.pif, *.zzx

Check if the email was ever received from the source

Never open an email attachment from unreliable sources

Check if the subject line and name of the attachment are correlated with each other

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Spamming Unsolicited bulk messages







  Spamming is the use of email systems to send unsolicited bulk messages indiscriminately overloading the users’ inbox   Spam emails may contain malicious computer programs such as viruses and Trojans   According to Symantec, spam makes up 89.1 % of all email traffic

Attacker

User

Spam Sources by Continent

44%

Europe Asia

27% 18%

South America Africa

8% 7%

North America Oceania

3%

0

20

40

60%

http://www.m86security.com

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Spamming Countermeasures Avoid opening spam messages (classified by spam filters)

Report suspicious email as spam

Use the email client's spam filter and anti‐ spamming tools

Do not use official email address while registering with any website

Never follow the links in spam messages

Use a different email address when posting messages to any public forum

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 Anti-Spamming Tool: SPAMfighter SPAMfighter protects all the email accounts on a PC against "phishing", identity theft, and other email frauds

http://www.spamfighter.com

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Hoax/Chain and Scam Emails 

  Hoaxes are email messages warning the recipients of  non‐existent threats



  Users are also warned of  adverse effects if they do not forward the email to others

http://www.scamletters.com

http://diamond ‐back.com

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A scam email asks for personal information such as bank account details, credit card numbers, password, etc.



The sender of scam mails may also ask the recipient to forward the email to everyone in his/her contact list

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Nigerian Scam A Nigerian scam is a form of  advance payment of money or money transfer http://in.mail.yahoo.com/

This scam is called a Nigerian scam because initially it started from Nigeria, but they can come in anywhere in the world Using this scam, scammers contact you by sending an email and offer you a share in a large sum of money They say they want to transfer money, which was trapped in banks during civil wars, to your account

From: Mr. Wong Du Seoul, South Korea. I will introduce myself I am Mr.Wong du a Banker working in a bank in south Korea Until now I am the account officer to most of the south Korea government accounts and I have since discovered that most of the account are dormant account with a lot of money in the account on further investigation I found out that one particular account belong to the former president of south Korean MR PARK CHUNG HEE, who ruled south Korean from 1963 ‐1979 and this particular account has a deposit of $48m with no next of kin. My proposal is that since I am the account officer and the money or the account is dormant and there is no next of kin obviously the account owner the former president of South Korea has died long time ago, that you should provide an account for the money to be transferred.

They may also cite various reasons such as massive inheritance problems, government restrictions, or taxes in the scammer’s country

The money that is floating in the bank right now is $48m and this is what I want to transfer to your account for our mutual benefit. Please if this is okay by you I will advice that you contact me through my direct email address.

Scammers ask you to pay money or give them your bank account details to help them transfer the money

Your reply will be appreciated,

Please this transaction should be kept confidential. For your assistance as the account owner we shall share the money on equal basis. Thank you. Wong Du

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Module Flow

Introduction to Email Security

Email Security Threats

How to Obtain Digital Certificates?

Email Security Tools

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Email Security Procedures

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Email Security Control Layers Receiver

Sender

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Email Security Procedures Scan email attachments for malware

Create and use strong passwords

Turn off the preview feature and change download settings in email clients

Provide alternate email address for mail recovery Check for last logging activity

Create  junk email filter in email clients

Digitally sign your mail messages

Use HTTPS for browser connection Disable/unselect Keep Me Signed In/Remember Me functions

Avoid unwanted emails using filters

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Creating Strong Passwords Strong passwords are difficult to crack or guess

A strong password can be created by using combinations of numbers (0‐9), letters in upper and lower case (a‐z and A‐Z), and special characters ([email protected]#$% …) Create a strong but easy to remember password and do not write it anywhere

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 Alternate Email Address An alternate email address is the additional email address required at signup for most of  the free email services such as Gmail and Yahoo It is used by service providers to verify the account creator’s identify Alternate email addresses are used for password recovery in case you forgot the password

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Keep Me Signed In/Remember Me Most of the popular email clients have the Keep me signed in or Remember Me options Checking these options allow the email client to fetch the email inbox of the user without him/her having to fill in the login details again This allows other users to access the user’s email Users should check that this option is not selected when accessing email from a public computer

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Using HTTPS 



Web mails such as Gmail, Yahoomail, Hotmail, AOL Mail, etc. have an option for choosing the communication protocol for browser connection   Change the Browser connection setting  to receive email using HTTPS (HTTPSecure)

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Check for Last Account Activity Always check the latest email account activity if the feature is available with the email service

To check account activity in Gmail, scroll to the bottom of the page and click Details Immediately change your password and password hints if you observe any suspicious activity

Latest account activity includes information such as access type (browser, mobile, POP3, etc.), location (IP address), and date/time of  account activities

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Scanning Email Attachments Be cautious when opening any email attachment Save all the attachments and scan them properly for malware using an antivirus before opening

Enable the antivirus to automatically scan all the emails and downloads

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Turn Off Preview Feature Email clients have an option to show a preview of  the email Turn off this feature in email clients Turning on this feature may execute script code without you explicitly opening the message To turn off the preview feature in Microsoft Outlook:  

Go to View menu and select Reading Pane   Click the Off  option

To turn off the preview feature in Mozilla Thunderbird:  

Go to View menu and select Layout   Uncheck the option Message Pane

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Email Filtering: Avoiding Unwanted Emails Email filtering is the process of organizing emails according to a specified criteria Email filters are generally used to identify and categorize spam mails To avoid unwanted emails in Outlook 2010, go to the Delete group on the Home  tab, click Junk  and Junk E‐mail Options , On the Blocked Sender tab, click Add Enter an email address or domain name, click OK

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Module Flow

Introduction to Email Security

Email Security Threats

How to Obtain Digital Certificates?

Email Security Tools

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Email Security Procedures

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Digitally Sign Your Emails 

  Digital signatures are used to authenticate the sender of a message or the signer of a document



  They can also be used to ensure that the original content of the message is not changed



  Users require an email certificate to digitally sign emails



You can obtain digital signatures from certification authorities

Example of Certification Authorities:

VeriSign (http://www.verisign.com)

Comodo (http://www.comodo.com)

Thwate (http://www.thawte.com)

Entrust (http://www.entrust.com)

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How to Obtain Digital Certificates? Go to the Certificate Authorities website Purchase and download a digital certificate Some certificate authorities offer a free personal email security certificate such as Comodo Provide personal details to download the certificate Login to the email account that you have provided while downloading the certificate

Check your inbox for an installation link

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Installing a Digital Certificate Click on the installation link to install the digital certificate In Internet Explorer go to Tools  Internet Options  Content  tab In the content tab, click Certificates button Select the certificate and click the Export button Click on Next Check the Yes, export the private key option Click on Next Protect the private key by giving a password and confirming it Specify the file you want to export and save it to a particular location

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Signing Your Emails Go to the Microsoft Outlook



File  Options

Click on Trust Center  Trust Center Settings  Email Security Encrypt the mail by selecting the appropriate check boxes under the Encrypted e‐mail section Click the Import/Export  button Browse to find the file to open and give the password and digital ID name Click the OK button Click New Mail  to write a message After clicking on the Send  button, it will prompt to encrypt the message Click the Send Unencrypted button (if the recipients do not have private key) Click on the Continue button if the recipient have private key

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Signing Your Emails

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Microsoft Outlook Download Settings Choose the Automatic Download option from the Trust Center and select the options as shown in the figure

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Module Flow

Introduction to Email Security

Email Security Threats

How to Obtain Digital Certificates?

Email Security Tools

35

Email Security Procedures

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Online Email Encryption Service: Lockbin Lockbin is a free service for sending private email messages It is used for sending confidential information such as credit card details and business information

https://www.lockbin.com 36

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Email Security Tools Comodo AntiSpam

McAfee SpamKiller

http://www.comodoantispam.com

http://us.mcafee.com

Netcraft Toolbar

Comodo Email Certificate

http://toolbar.netcraft.com

http://www.comodo.com

PhishTank SiteChecker

Mirramail Secure Email

https://addons.mozilla.org

http://www.mirrasoft.com

Spamihilator

Encryptomatic MessageLock

http://www.spamihilator.com

http://www.encryptomatic.com

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Module Summary    Email

(electronic mail) is a method of exchanging digital messages from a sender to one or more recipients

   Attachments

can contain malicious programs; opening such attachments can infect the computer

   Spamming is    Hoaxes 

the process of populating the user’s inbox with unsolicited or junk emails

are false alarms claiming reports about a nonexistent virus

Do not forget to delete browser cache, passwords, and history

   Consider

setting mobile phones to download only headers of emails, not the full email

   Digital

signatures are used to authenticate the sender of a message or the signer of a document

   Email

security tools protect passwords and automatically log off email accounts

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Email Communication Checklist DON’T USE just one email account for all purposes DON’T CLOSE the browser without properly logging out DON’T FORGET to delete browser cache, passwords, and history DON’T SEND personal and financial information via email DON’T TRUST the emails from your friends to be secure DON’T DELETE spam instead of blacklisting it DON’T FAIL to scan all email attachments and to enable the email spam filter DON’T USE simple and easy‐to‐guess passwords

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Email Security Checklist Create strong passwords for logging into mail accounts Enable https for secure communications/transactions Be diligent while opening email attachments Do not click on links provided in email messages Follow email etiquette when forwarding messages Do not forward or reply to spam and suspicious emails; delete them Avoid accessing email via unsecured public wireless connection Avoid accessing the email accounts on shared computers and sending large attachments in emails

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Email Security Checklist Use Bcc: option when sending mail to bulk recipients Never save your password on the web browser Sort messages by priority, subject, date, sender, and other options (Helps in searching email) Avoid sending confidential, sensitive, personal, and classified information in emails Clean your Inbox regularly Create folders and move email accordingly (Family, Friends, Work, etc.) Digitally sign your outgoing mails Send attachments in PDF form rather than Word or Excel formats

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