Secure E-mail Programs

Updated: 03/05/2005 01:47
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In our issues we draw much attention to security. It goes without saying. And it's important, we`ll stick to this line in future. Today we want to pay attention to the security of mail programs. In the previous issue we talked about mail correspondence security. Now we are going to talk about the clients, securing this correspondence .


As a matter of fact, the number of mail clients is not huge (in comparison with other programs). The reason is that choosing a mail program is once and for all, mostly. Purchasing that kind of software, You will hardly reject it. And it's not difficult to embody advanced technologies as well as customer's needs in a program like that. Address book, design, sending-receiving messages. Not too much.

The leaders today are such programs as Outlook Express, Eudora, Becky, Mulberry, Mozilla, Netscape Mail, Pegasus Mail, The Bat!. Each of them is original in the content, though quite similar in their design. That's why, speaking about secure mail programs and their security, we can operate with similar notions. Hence, we are not going to pay much attention to the detailed description of the functions of every program from this survey.

First of all, they are all really secure, cause they are world known and widely popular not because of their nice design. Secondly, it's better to try a program on Yourself, cause describing each of them will take much free space.

What is the security of mail programs like? The thing is that viruses don't infect the system simply via mail program. You just imagine! Viruses penetrate in some other way... via e-mails. I.e. it is not a program itself that allows the harmful files in, the mails, You receive, do. If You just open mail program, nothing will happen, and if You open an e-mail, containing virus - anything can happen.

That's why namely the specific character is not about the program to be not so widely spread or protected, all is about HOW it fights viruses. As a matter of fact, each of leading programs named before is secure. Each of them can be called "the most secure". Though, it's all about marketing, one can't say they are worse.

According to world standards, the first place takes Chinese program Becky. The main difference from usual Outlook is opportunity to create several mailboxes separately (i.e. testing different mailboxes with different set of rules). Advanced protocols IMAP4rev1 for e-mail and LDAP for the address book were also added. This mail program has powerful filters and different rules.

Becky "understands" HTML, and that means, it allows creating mails with the help of the code. Though there's also a reverse side. The problem is that frauds spread viruses, such as Trojans via HTML. It's fraught with serious troubles and needs additional protection programs. It also concerns Outlook.

Outlook Express is the most widespread mail client, given in Windows by default, means - the most accessible. And that means that program developers didn't make it complex and bulky. It's an easy program for those, who doesn't want any headache. As we have mentioned that not the software is important to fight viruses, but the functionality - the question arises: whether this easiness worth losing functions. Of course it does!

Often a message appears: "The virus "Zoher" spreads upon e-mail in the form of attached files. The victims are PCs, where there is no special "patch" for Outlook security system installed. What is extremely dangerous is that the worm is activated automatically while reading or previewing infected mail (the same is with some other internet-worms, such as "Nimda", "BadtransII", "Aliz").

And if the patch mentioned is installed, "Zoher" is activated only when a customer is a weak unit, i.e. in case he launches the attached, virus-infected file. As You see in this case violators made use of mail program vulnerability, and it's symbolic for Outlook. Though it concerns all Microsoft products. By the way Microsoft Outlook is also (more functional service).

Endora (the latest version 6.21) can truly be considered a secure program. It supports practically any advanced techs, including OpenSSL. The many-sided anti-spam fight has been realized in this program. This program is also good enough for local networks, because there's an improved functionality to synchronize and access email from multiple computers and locations in it. Now, the most interesting thing. And probably the most important for investors. SCAM WATCH!

This new feature combats "phishing" schemes that use disguised URL's to gather personal information. Eudora now detects if the URL in the link differs suspiciously from the host name and warns you to exercise caution before making the connection. How effective it is, our advice - see it with Your own eyes, the more so as this version is spread for free.

One of the most popular programs is Mulberry, from the American producer ISAMET. It is a high-performance, scalable, and graphically groovy internet mail client. It uses the IMAP (IMAP4rev1, IMAP4, and IMAP2bis) protocol for accessing mail messages on a server, the standard SMTP protocol for sending messages, and does lots and lots of things with MIME parts for mixed text and "attachments" of many different types of files and data.

Another popular and secure mail clients are programs from Mozilla and Netscape (Mail). Per se, these mail programs is just a browser course from the manufactures. Both they were designed on high level and have all the necessary properties for secure and stable work. They refer to recommended programs.

Summing up, we can say once again that it's the matter of taste. One program offers complex and top-class setup, difficult to grasp even for the professional. Another - vice versa, quite simple, though needs a series of protection programs. Best of all - to combine two variants. But the most important - after setup, in case You like the program, to study its opportunities and needs, so that to make working with mails more convenient and secure. Don't use programs, made by unknown manufacturers. The programs, named here are enough for You.

Be careful.


About the author

Huang Kong skillful writer, working at HYIPNews since 2008. Experienced in writing articles, news reports and editing online content. Hong Kuang has proven to be a consistently dependable team player, able to handle any task in the sphere of article writing. He thrives in a high-pressure environment, enjoys the challenges of meeting deadlines and managing a team, he is comfortable researching, writing and editing on a wide range of topics.
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