This article reviews the ten best email security software available today. This type of software provides the fundamental security capabilities of email security gateways, including protection from threats like malware, phishing, spam, and virus. They monitor massive amounts of emails and block those containing such threats. However, advanced email security software (such as those listed here) will do more than that; they extend detection and response capabilities beyond, provide Artificial Intelligence (AI) or Machine Learning (ML), intelligence feeds, and more.
Armed with any of the best ten email security software, you will prevent many email-borne threats and attacks from ever succeeding.
The Best Email Security Software
- Guardz – EDITOR’S CHOICE Email security from a cloud platform that is intended for use by managed services providers. It removes spam, BEC, phishing, and malware. Get a 14-day free trial.
- Proofpoint Email Protection A leading email security tool with basic email security gateway capabilities and advanced features like ML-engine, multi-layer content analysis, sandboxing, etc.
- Barracuda Email Protection A popular multi-layer email protection software that combines email gateway defense and AI-enabled inbox defense.
- Mimecast A cloud-based email protection tool that safeguards against spam, phishing, malware, and advanced attacks such as spear-phishing, BEC, ransomware, and impersonation.
- Avanan Email Protection An enterprise cloud email security solution (acquired by Check Point) that secures cloud collaboration suites like O365, GSuite, and Slack.
- Microsoft Defender for Office 365 A native threat protection service with a holistic approach to security for Microsoft Office 365.
- FireEye XDR (now Trellix) An extended detection and response platform with an advanced email protection solution.
- SpamTitan by TitanHQ A comprehensive email protection, security, and filtering tool backed by a series of high-performantTitanHQ products.
- N-Able Mail Assure A robust cloud-based email security software designed for MSPs and enterprises.
- Cisco Secure Email A cloud-based and multi-layered email security solution for detecting, quarantining, investigating, and remediating attacks that target email.
- Symantec Email Security.cloud A public cloud service with fundamental email security gateway capabilities. Use it with other Symantec services to get advanced capabilities.
The best Email Security Software
Guardz focuses on scanning the email and data storage elements of Microsoft 365 and Google Workspace. That means it protects Outlook/Exchange Server and Gmail accounts plus data held in OneDrive and Google Drive. The package automatically removes malicious emails from the mailboxes of users, taking them into a quarantine area.
- Identifies impersonators trying to trick clerks into sending money
- Spots phishing attempts used to steal system access credentials
- Removes attachments that contain malware and ransomware
- Provides Dark Web monitoring to search for disclosed email accounts
- Automatically isolates suspicious emails with an option to examine and restore them
The Guardz email system operates from the cloud and accesses each company’s email system through a plug-in. The dashboard for the package is hosted in the cloud and can be accessed through and standard Web browser. As well as reporting on discovered malicious emails, the system moves those messages into a quarantine area where they can be inspected and possibly restored if investigations reveal that they are not threats.
- Protects email systems, endpoints, and cloud data
- Designed for managed service providers
- External footprint monitoring and data leak discovery
- Security awareness training and phishing simulation
- Live incident reporting
- Only protects Gmail and Microsoft email systems
There are three editions of the Guardz system:
- Starter (for 1 – 99 users) – $9 per user per month
- Pro (for 100 + users) – $5 per user per month
- Ultimate (a managed security service) – price by negotiation
Get a 14-day free trial.
Guardz is our top pick for email security software because it implements constant scanning of emails as they come into your corporate accounts and it also scans the Dark Web to identify whether email accounts on your domain are up for sale. This package focuses on protecting Gmail and Microsoft 365’s Exchange Server and Gmail. It also protects data held on endpoints and in One Drive and Google Drive accounts. The Guardz package also includes phishing simulation for system and user testing and also an employee awareness training module.
Official Site: https://app.guardz.com/signup
2. Proofpoint Email Protection
Proofpoint is a global market-leading cybersecurity company that aims to protect employees and their data from advanced threats and risks that target email, social media, and mobile. Proofpoint has proven itself to be one of the best email protection software. It was recognized in the 2021 Gartner Market Guide for Email Security and in 2022’s Gartner Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Information Archiving.
- Advanced Reports with metrics like phishAlarm, TRAP, VAP isolation, and more.
- Business Email Compromise (BEC) Defense blocks Malware and non-malware email threats such as email fraud.
- Get visibility into people to identify Very Attacked People (VAPs.).
- Access to an advanced ML technology (NexusAI) to accurately classify spam, phishing emails, Malware, and more.
- Identify and block advanced Malware with multi-layered content analysis, reputation analysis, and sandbox.
Proofpoint’s flagship product is Proofpoint Email Protection— a unified Email security solution that aims to defend users against advanced email threats and guarantee business continuity. The software provides different capabilities ranges, from fundamental email protection to advanced components like email fraud defense, threat response auto-pull (TRAP), Sendmail open-source, and more.
- Combines email archiving and security into one package
- Can retain emails for up to 10 years, great for compliance
- Ideal for small to medium-sized businesses
- Offers URL validation to help stop phishing attempts
- Could use more customization options
Request a 30-days free trial.
3. Barracuda Email Protection
Barracuda Networks is a global leader in security, app delivery, and data protection solutions. Across their breadth of exceptional products, Barracuda offers Barracuda Email Protection— one of the best email security tools designed to stop all 13 email threats. Barracuda Email Protection has been recognized as a leader in the 2021 Forrester Wave for Enterprise Email Security, SC Awards Europe 2020 for Best Email Security, and Gartner Peer Insights Customer Choice 2019.
- Combine email gateway defense and AI-enabled inbox defense.
- Automated response and security awareness training.
- Email encryption and DLP (Data Loss Prevention).
- Enforce email retention policies for compliance with cloud archiving.
- Integration and backup of your Office 365 data.
The Barracuda Email Protection software provides multiple layers of prevention, detection, and response. The software can take on simple attacks like spam and malware to more advanced attacks like ransomware, business email compromise, and account takeover.
- Flexible deployment options include on-premise, cloud, and hybrid cloud configurations
- Can redirect DDoS attacks away from network infrastructure
- Includes email encryption for added security
- Would like to see more data visualization in the interface for NOCs
- Port mapping feature could be made more user friendly
Mimecast is a developer of cloud-based email protection and cybersecurity tools. Their Email Security tool uses a holistic approach to cybersecurity, allowing it to prevent (before an attack), provide business continuity (during an attack or failure), and recover data (after an attack occurs). The product will identify and block spam and phishing and also protect from targeted threats like spear-phishing, ransomware, impersonation, and other similar attacks.
- Protect internal tools and increase security awareness.
- Stop BEC (Business Email Compromise).
- Identify and stop brand impersonation.
- Automation and orchestration integrations (+70 APIs).
- URL and attachment protection.
- Archive filtering service for securing email accounts.
Their mail protection service uses a massive grid infrastructure with geographically dispersed data centers for processing and storing emails. The highly-scalable Mimecast Mail Transfer Agent provides intelligent email routing based on the location of the server or user.
- Acts as a full email gateway for completely mail security
- Uses pattern recognition and behavior analysis to detect unregistered threats
- Can help identify traffic not using proper DNS security measures (DKIM, SPF, DMARC)
- Only available as a cloud product
For small businesses, Mimecast offers Core ($340/month), Hero ($420/month), and Mega $630/month). All prices are based on up to 49 users. For large organizations, Mimecast offers Perimeter Defense, Comprehensive Defense, and Pervasive Defense (get a quote). Schedule a demo.
5. Avanan Email Protection
Avanan is an enterprise cloud-based email security provider. The company was acquired (in Aug 2021) by Check Point Software Technologies (a global leader in cybersecurity solutions). The collaboration now expands security to SaaS collaboration suites and offers best-of-breed cloud email malware protection.
- Blocks phishing, malware, and data leakage.
- Protect from account takeover and supply chain attacks.
- Prevents Business Email Compromise.
- Patented inline enforcement to prevent delivery of malicious emails.
- Data loss prevention, encryption, and compliance.
Avanan uses a multi-layer security approach to protect cloud collaboration solutions like GSuite, O365, and Slack. It identifies and stops sophisticated targeted attacks invisible to the default security tools. To accomplish this, it implements Machine Learning (ML) and advanced AI to improve its email protection capabilities (such as better catch rate).
- Simplistic dashboard makes viewing top level insights easier
- Can automatically deactivate or delete inactive accounts
- Uses behavioral analysis to detect account compromise
- Additional protection such as anti phishing is a paid add-on module
- Could use a longer trial period
For SMBs (under 500), on an annual basis and including Email & Collaboration, the pricing for Avanan Protect ($5.00/user/month), Advanced Protect ($6.50/user/month), and Complete Protect ($8.50/user/month). For Enterprise and Edu/Gov (request a quote). Try Avanan free for 14 days.
6. Microsoft Defender for Office 365
Former Office 365 ATP (Advanced Threat Protection) is now Microsoft Defender for Office 365. The Office 365 Defender provides the best-of-breed and native threat protection service for the Microsoft 365 suite. The service was named Leader in The Forrester Wave™: Email Security, Q2 2021.
- Protect from business email compromise and credential phishing.
- Automatically investigate, respond to, and remediate attacks.
- AI to detect suspicious content and correlate attack patterns.
- Integrate it with SIEM and XDR tools.
- Generate real-time and historical reports.
The Office 365 Defender uses a holistic approach to protect your Office 365 email. It provides prevention, detection, investigation & hunting, response & remediation, and awareness & training. All such security capabilities are available to protect across endpoints, cloud apps, emails, documents, and identities from advanced threats.
- Offers great default protection
- Ideal for MS365 environments
- Provides holistic protection
- Offers little flexibility in terms of integrations
- Not ideal for those who are looking to replace Defender
Defender for Office 365 is included with Microsoft 365 E5 ($57.00 user/month) annual commitment. Register to Microsoft to begin a Microsoft 365 E5 Security trial.
7. FireEye XDR (now Trellix)
Trellix is a brand new threat detection and response software that came from the (2021) merge of two big names in the cybersecurity market, McAfee Enterprise, and FireEye. Trellix carries the reputation of FireEye, one of the best email security solutions providers. FireEye was named 2021 Winner for the Cybersecurity Excellence Awards with their FireEye Cloudvisory, Email Security, and Endpoint Security software.
- Protection against advanced spear-phishing, spam, and impersonation.
- Inspect and re-write URLs leading to credential-phishing sites.
- Uses adversarial, machine, and victim intelligence to quickly identify and block risks.
- Integrates with email systems such as Microsoft Office 365 and G Suite.
- Manage policies and customize the response.
The FireEye XDR (new Trellix solution) simplifies threat detection, investigation, and incident response. FireEyeXDR includes FireEye Email Security Solution, an SC award 2019 honor winner of “Best Email Security Solution”.
- Great interface, the dark theme is great for long term monitoring in NOCs
- Subscription-model keeps your database updated with the most recent threats and bad-actors
- Provides insights for remediation and preventive actions based on recent events
- Playbooks offer remediation workflows to automatically fix issues
- Configuration can take some time
8. SpamTitan by TitanHQ
TitanHQ is a SaaS-based multi-layered comprehensive cybersecurity solution designed to prevent user vulnerability. TitanHQ’s products aim for SMBs, SMEs, or MSPs that need advanced email protection. They offer WebTitan (Content filtering), SpamTitan (anti-email spam solution), ArcTitan (email archiving), EncryptTitan (email encryption), and SafeTitan (security awareness).
- Real-time blacklists that defend against spam and malware.
- Configure blacklists, graylists, and whitelists for customized protection.
- Outbound email scanning to ensure no malicious emails leave the organization.
- Advanced phishing, whaling, and spear-phishing protection.
- Data leak prevention rules to prevent internal data loss.
- Next-gen sandbox to protect against advanced email attacks.
SpamTitan is an email protection, security, and email filtering tool. It protects against advanced phishing, spam, malware, ransomware, links to malicious websites, or any threats received by email. SpamTitan can easily integrate and strengthen the security of MS Office 365.
- The dashboard is simple, yet informative with key email metrics
- Provides protection against both malicious links and attachments
- Can “detonate” payloads in a sandbox environment to uncover hidden viruses
- Not ideal for resellers or MSPs
Protect email from 25 users for one year ($1.65/user/monthly) at $495.00. Or cover 100 users for one year ($1.27/user/monthly) at a total of $1,1518.00. For more users, get a quote. Register to TitanHQ to start a free trial for 30 days.
9. N-Able Mail Assure
N-able (former SolarWinds MSP) is a full-featured product stack platform with integrated monitoring, management (RMM), backup, end-to-end security, and ticketing capabilities. The platform is designed for MSPs that work with end customer environments. Across N-able's breadth of exceptional end-to-end security products, they offer N-able Mail Assure — a cloud-based email security tool that protects end customers' inbound and outbound email.
- Seamless integration and protection for Microsoft Office365.
- Access to new threat intelligence from ML, antivirus, and reputational feeds.
- A Proprietary AI-based engine identifies new threat patterns in real-time.
- Encrypted and long-term email archiving.
N-able Mail Assure provides email protection from phishing, spam, malware, virus, ransomware, impersonation, fake URLs, spoofing, or Business Email Compromise. The software uses collective threat intelligence and ML to detect and protect against email threats in real-time.
- Based in the cloud, no surprise infrastructure costs
- Designed for MSPs and multi-tenant use
- If self-learning, and uses data collected internally to improve threat detection
- Supports protection for cloud-hosted email servers
- The platform has many features which will require time to fully explore
10. Cisco Secure Email
Cisco Secure Email (formerly Email Security and ESA) is a cloud-based multi-layered email security tool that detects, quarantines, investigates, and remediates cyber attacks that target email. Although Cisco Secure Email works for businesses of any size, the product is especially popular among enterprises and MSPs.
- Expand to XDR (Extended Threat Detection and Response) with the built-in SecureX.
- Detect fraudulent senders, analyze, and stop block BEC attacks.
- Robust Data Loss Prevention and encryption to protect email.
- Improve Microsoft O365’s native security with Cloud Mailbox.
- Industry-leading threat intelligence to identify and block malicious links.
- Cisco Secure awareness training.
Cisco Secure Email aims to ensure business continuity by allowing users to communicate securely. The software is designed to protect businesses against BEC, advanced malware, ransomware, phishing, spoofing, malicious attachments, spam, data loss, or any other type of email-born threat.
- Highly flexible cloud-based solution
- Provides a suite of quarantining and investigative tools
- Has a robust backend intelligence system to identify new and evolving threats
- Better suited for larger environments
11. Symantec Email Security.cloud
Symantec Email Security.cloud is a public cloud service with fundamental inbound email security gateway capabilities, including protection against phishing, malware, spam, and virus attempts. The service has a 99% accuracy in spam detection, 100% accuracy for SLA-defined viruses, and insignificant false positive rates (three in a million for antispam).
- Isolate suspicious email attachments, email links, and web downloads.
- Built-in user awareness and training tools.
- Protect from Business Email Compromise.
- Use it with Symantec Email Fraud detection and Email Threat Isolation.
- Encryption and Data Loss Prevention to protect data.
- Protect Microsoft O365 and Google Apps.
Symantec Email Security.cloud provides advanced capabilities such as self-learning, threat intelligence feeds to improve threat detection precision, and DLP to block unauthorized outbound emails from leaving the organization with sensitive information. The software can also protect users from spear phishing, credential theft, and ransomware attacks.
- Leverages artificial intelligence to provides improved email and endpoint security
- Offers both on-premise and SaaS hosted email security solutions
- Setup is simple, only requiring a change of DNS records
- Shared IP addresses can be blocked by the service, impacting your legitimate mail flow
The Symantec Email Security.cloud product offers Email Protect and Email Safeguard. Contact Symantec to get a quote.
Key considerations when choosing an email security software
Email is one of the essential business communication methods and the leading attack vector. Providing solid email protection to users, employees, or end customers is of paramount importance.
Before we continue to describe how to find the best email security software, remember that the best email security strategy is building user awareness via training, education, and promoting a security-centric culture. An email security software should never be a substitute for cybersecurity awareness and training.
- What is email security software? Email security software controls and keeps track of every inbound and outbound email, recognizing and blocking any threat. Email protection software also lets you enforce email filtering policies that, on one side, prevent private information from being compromised and, on the other side, block outside threats from causing damage.
- What is the lifecycle of email threats? Barracuda refers to the 13 email threats (from less to more complex) as; Spam, Malware, Data Exfiltration, URL phishing, scamming, spear phishing, domain and brand impersonation, extortion, business email compromise, conversion hijacking, lateral phishing, and account takeover. This description of threats should give you a solid framework on a software's level of email protection.
When choosing an email security software, look for the following features:
- A multi-layered security approach improves security coverage It utilizes different components with different purposes (prevention, detection, response, and awareness) to protect various assets.
- Cloud-based email security Should allow easier email monitoring, management, and control. Cloud servers are also, often more capable and powerful for analysis, AI, and ML.
- Integrations Seamless and quick integration to email services like Microsoft O365 and GSuite is vital.
- Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) Components like sandboxing provide an added protection layer to protect from advanced threats and malware. In addition, ATP can also stop spear phishing, impersonation, ransomware, and more.
- Encryption and data loss prevention These two features help protect the data transported within an outbound email.
The top ten email security software listed in this post provides the fundamental email security gateway capabilities, including anti-phishing, anti-spam, anti-malware, and anti-virus. All of the solutions work with a multi-layered security approach to safeguard email against these threats, and all are cloud-based.
Our favorite choices are Proofpoint Email Protection, Barracuda Email Protection, Avanan Email Protection, and N-Able Mail Assure. Fortunately, all of them offer a free trial.
So, there is no excuse; start protecting your email now!