Email security and privacy awareness course

To mark the end of the year, we thought it is useful to propose an email security and privacy course to enrich the learning and awareness of our users. For that reason we made a content-based course by putting together all the important and related aspects of email security and privacy. The entire course takes around an hour of reading. We have presented it in a number of short blog posts that only take a couple of minutes. The course itself is easy to understand. We hope our course will help you in raising the bar of your email data security and privacy!

Set your personal threat profile

We do realize that many people can feel overwhelmed by amount of tips and recommendations put forth. This may make you feel like there’s little hope out there, and that many of the tips are for security experts.

The reality is that everything is a trade-off.  So, you just need to determine yours.

  • Assess your own risk and your comfort with risk to identify what security measures are relevant to you
    • For example:  do you feel you need to send all your text messages with end-to-end encryption via a specific app?
  • The effort for security precautions can range from easy one-time changes to bigger, long-term shifts in habits

    • Security takes work. Doing nothing is so much easier than doing the work needed to make yourself more secure.
  • Just because you might not understand the technology or have not yet heard of the security measure does not mean it is something you can or should ignore.
    • A good judgement is always needed, but it is worth doing a little internet surfing if there is a term you are not familiar with before ruling something out.

So, regardless of your personal threat profile, pretty much everyone will find useful tips when reading this email security and privacy course.

Email privacy and security awareness course part 1

Protecting your data is the very first step in securing your digital life,therefore do not hesitate to take action.

Protecting your device is the second and most important step.Therefore, you need to understand that your device is the gateway to your digital life.  The more secure it is, the more effective your defense measures will be. An important thing to remember is that if your device has been compromised, all the other protective measures will be in vein.

Securing your email account means protecting your online identity since your email address is associated with almost everything you do online.

Following good password habits is a key factor in making all of your online and offline defenses stronger. There certainly are password managers, that do a great job.  However, avoiding bad password habits is something that you should do yourself.

  • Social Engineering

Humans are not perfect, however they are considered as the weakest link in any sort of defense. The thing that make us vulnerable is the tendency to trust someone or something based on certain criteria.  This section will briefly go through every aspect of Social engineering.

What is Social Engineering? – 6 min read

Social Engineering: What is Tailgating? – 2 min read

Social engineering: Quid Pro Quo attacks – 2 min read

Social Engineering: What is baiting? – 2 min read

Social Engineering: What is pretexting? – 3 min read

Social Engineering: What is Phishing? – 5 min read

Social Engineering: What is Vishing? – 5 min read

Social Engineering: What is Smishing? – 3 min read

Tips on how to avoid social engineering schemes – 3 min read

Email privacy and security awareness course part 2

Now that we have discussed the aspects of securing your data, lets now discuss some of the consequences that could occur in case your device or account gets compromised. We’ll also go through the steps that you can take to avoid such a situation.

Another potential consequence of a compromised device or account is ransomware. This post will discuss the related aspects in detail.

The myriad ways we send, receive, store, and use email messages make securing and enhancing email privacy a very difficult problem.  This blog post gives you an overview of resulting privacy issues.

Finally, we would like to end this course by looking at the different aspects of online privacy in general.

At Mailfence, not only do we aim to make our platform more private and secure, we also try to make our users aware of the importance of improving their email security and privacy in general. We believe that a secure and private digital world can only be achieved if both the creators and users play their respective parts. We hope that this course will prove useful, while we continue to strive in making your emails more secure and private.

However if you still have some friends/colleagues who would ask why to take such a course, then following comic will suffice.

Email privacy and security

Should you have any more questions, please don’t hesitate to let us know.

Get your secure email

Follow us on twitter/reddit and keep yourself posted at all times.

The Mailfence Team

Avatar for M Salman Nadeem

M Salman Nadeem

Information Security Analyst - Security Team | Mailfence

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