Traditional Email Security is Broken. Let’s Fix it!

Today, I am proud to join Area 1 Security as the company announces the close of $25 million in growth funding – led by new investor, ForgePoint Capital, along with current investors Kleiner Perkins, Icon Ventures and Top Tier Capital. This is an exciting, timely opportunity to lead as President and CEO working with Area 1’s founders (Oren Falkowitz, Blake Darché and Phil Syme) and executive leadership, who have built an amazing solution unlike anything else in the market.

Only Area 1 can prevent phishing preemptively, comprehensively, and with an accountable business model that allows enterprises to improve security while improving their TCO. The company has won the trust and business of some of the top enterprises in the world that turn to Area 1 to prevent the most challenging, difficult-to-detect Business Email Compromise (BEC) attacks. Together, we will continue to disrupt the industry, transitioning customers from outdated email security solutions to modern, efficient, cost-effective Cloud Email Security.

After all, the Secure Email Gateway (SEG) had a nice run. SEGs sit in a multi-billion dollar a year market. Yet SEGs are dying (even Gartner’s May “How to Reduce the Cost of Email Security Solutions” report recommends security pros evaluate alternatives to SEGs). Taking their place are Cloud Email Security (CES) solutions or alternatively, Integrated Email Security (IES) solutions. Whatever name the market ends up with (CES or IES), there are two factors that drive and define this new solution area. The first is Phishing. The second is Cloud-based email.

Ninety-five percent of cybersecurity breaches start with Phishing. And if you are not maniacally focused on the research and technology to stop Phishing, you’ll fail. Phishing is not spam. BEC attacks, which cost U.S. businesses more than $2 billion in the past five years, don’t involve computer viruses. Past solutions are not solving — and will not solve — these present-day problems.

You can no longer afford to get Phished first, then respond after. Organizations must have anti-Phishing solutions that literally watch the Internet, finding new Phishing infrastructure as it is being built, then with that preemptive knowledge, kill the threats before they attack. That is what today’s businesses require.

Secondly, this post-COVID era has accelerated the megatrend of organizations moving email from self-managed perimeter-based solutions to the Cloud using either Microsoft Office 365 or Google’s G Suite Email. Those are great mail solutions that give you scale, flexibility, efficiency, and even some security. But “some” security is not great security. The fact is, you can’t run “naked” O365 or Gmail – that would be virtually negligent. To get the full benefits of Cloud infrastructure, you need to run a Cloud Email or Integrated Email security solution in front-of, or via an API, in conjunction with your Cloud email and messaging services.

The combination of organizations moving email to Cloud infrastructure, and the fact that Phishing is still the No. 1 cybersecurity problem impeding the move to Cloud infrastructure has fostered the evolution from SEGs to CES/IES solutions. Our new Forgepoint Capital-led round demonstrates that even in challenging economic times, innovative companies with the right focus and team can emerge and thrive.

I look forward to Area 1 driving the growth of this market. I’m proud to be a part of this new chapter. And I’m excited to see what will happen when the rest of the world adopts Area 1 Security’s innovations, preemptive approach, and value.

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