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Posts Tagged ‘imap’

The Case For Email Security

Tuesday, March 31st, 2015

Section 1: Introduction to Email Security

You may already know that email is insecure; however, it may surprise you to learn just how insecure it really is. For example, did you know that messages which you thought were deleted years ago may be sitting on servers half-way around the world? Or that your messages can be read and modified in transit, even before they reach their destination? Or even that the username and password that you use to login to your email servers can be stolen and used by hackers?

This article is designed to teach you about how email really works, what the real security issues are, what solutions exist, and how you can avoid security risks.

Information security and integrity are centrally important  as we use email for personal and business communication: sending confidential and sensitive information over this medium every day. While you are reading this article, imagine how these security problems could affect your business or personal life and your identity…. if they have not already.

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Exchange ActiveSync (MobileSync) vs Good Old IMAP + SMTP

Monday, October 6th, 2014

Many years ago, it used to be that if you had a cell phone that had an email program included, you could configure using IMAP and SMTP to allow you to check email and send email…. just like how a desktop email program worked.

This is still the case, of course.  However, as far back as 1996, Microsoft introduced the first version of “ActiveSync”, a protocol designed to allow mobile devices supporting it to synchronize email, calendars, tasks, and contacts with Microsoft’s Exchange server.  ActiveSync has evolved over time, getting faster, offering support for use in every modern mobile device.  While ActiveSync was designed to work with the Exchange server, these days it also works with other non-Exchange services that can talk the “ActiveSync language,” e.g. LuxSci through its Mobile Sync service.

In general, ActiveSync is much better than using IMAP and SMTP, though there are a few small corner cases where IMAP may be better for you.  Below, we shall compare them from an end-user perspective … trying to shed some light on “which is better” from a practical point of view.

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Do you need a VPN for Secure Email in a Wireless Hotspot?

Tuesday, January 28th, 2014

LuxSci has been approached by many people asking for VPN (Virtual Private Network) services.  When we ask them why, they indicate that they use wireless hotspots (like at Starbucks and other public places) that are insecure and untrusted and they want to be sure that their email is secure and encrypted there.*

Note that even if the hotspot is password protected and “secure”, that does not mean that it is “trusted”.  The hot stop administrators or other users of that hotspot could still try to intercept your Internet traffic.  So, just because it is a “secure” hotspot with the little lock next to it and a password that you must enter, do not assume you are safe at all.

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Understanding Email Services: A crash course in email jargon

Tuesday, July 23rd, 2013

You thought email was a simple concept, but you are at once confronted with a plethora of acronyms and jargon like POP, IMAP, WebMail, Aliases, Forwards, SMTP, IMAP, POP, Quota, SPAM, TLS, SSL, Archival, and more! This article describes the ins and outs of email, explains these terms, and helps you figure out what services and features you need from your personal or business email service provider.

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Best Practices: Accessing and Monitoring Staff Email

Monday, June 24th, 2013

The following situations or requirements are all very common to small and medium-sized businesses:

“We have travelling sales people who need to be able to access all their emails online.”

“We have users whose inbound/outbound email needs to be reviewed or accessible by management.”

“We have users who need to access the same email folders or addresses all of the time.”

These kinds of situations usually require

  1. Storage of lots of email, and
  2. Shared access to that email

In this article, we discuss some of the best ways to meet these needs and what things to avoid.  In short, the answer is to use shared email folders combined with email archival for maximum redundancy and reliability.  For what this means and why, read on:

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Best Practices: Removing all copies of an email from an email server

Monday, June 10th, 2013

These questions arise over and over:

How do I prevent copies of my email (inbox/sent) from being backed up on your servers?

Is there an automatic way to do this?

What if I only want data saved on servers if it is encrypted?

Where are the other copies stored?

Can I use a WebAide to auto save/encrypt email and attachments and remove any copies received/sent?

We’ll answer these questions in general and in the context of LuxSci.

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Protect your LuxSci Account with Two-Factor Authentication and Other Barriers

Thursday, May 23rd, 2013

Two-Factor Authentication (supposedly patented by Kim DotCom)– using a password plus “something else” to gain access to your account and to prevent lost, stolen, or guessed passwords from impacting you — is finally becoming fashionable.

First, it was a cool idea, then some places such as LuxSci started supporting it, but it was rarely used due to people not wanting to bother with an extra step to login to their accounts.  Now, with Twitter adding 2-factor authentication to help stem the tide of account compromises, security is now fashionable.

This turn about is really fantastic as it brings security consciousness much more into the mainstream — so much so that popular Radio hosts are talking on the air about how to secure accounts.  This can only be good for the adoption of better security practices overall and a decrease in compromises due to laziness … and in cases like HIPAA, laziness can be a terrible thing.

In this post, we’ll go over how to secure your LuxSci account against intrusion using Two Factor authentication and other methods.

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New Contact/Calendar/Task Synchronization Option for Outlook 2013

Monday, March 4th, 2013

LuxSci customers with Basic or Premium MobileSync can now use this same service for automatic synchronization and push updates of calendar, contact, and task data between LuxSci WeAides and Outlook v2013 for Windows.

Outlook v2013 for Windows is released and now includes native support for “Exchange ActiveSync” (EAS) for synchronizing calendar, contact, and task information with external systems. EAS is usually only available in mobile devices, as a different mechanism is used by desktop programs to synchronize data with Exchange.  Outlook v2013 is the first version of Outlook (or any other desktop email program that we are aware of) that supports ActiveSync and which thus allows automatic synchronization of data with non-exchange-based systems without the need for any kind of special plug-in.

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When you must stay on top of your email — Push Email is Key

Wednesday, February 13th, 2013

Did you hear about the big sales opportunity?  Oh ya — that is so 27 seconds ago.

While this quotes a recently popular commercial for cell phone data speed, it does underline the increasing need for connectivity and the time sensitive nature of every day life and business.  Our customers need to get notices and emails as soon as possible.  The less delay, the better.

Many companies, like LuxSci with its MobileSync service, offer “Push Email” to address this need.

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What’s Happening With My Account? – Account Status Reports

Monday, September 10th, 2012

Customers often want to know what is happening and why – and rightly so!

Many of the Support requests we receive involve tracking down information in logs and determining why certain things happen the way that they do.  Invariably, there is no real “issue”, just a need to clarify what is happening and why so that email filters, program settings, web site marketing, and other factors can be adjusted properly.

Over the years, LuxSci has frequently added self service reporting tools to its user and administrative interfaces.  Customers are empowered to determine for themselves on their own time schedule many things that were previously the purview of senior Support.

In this article, we review many of the reporting options available to customer accounts … as most people, even existing long time customers, may not be aware of the full scope of what is actually available to them.

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