Tumbleweed Communications Corp., a provider of secure messaging applications for businesses and government agencies using the Internet, has announced the findings of a jointly-sponsored white paper completed by IDC. The paper, "Message Content Management: Corporations' Rapidly Expanding Means to Control Message Activity," examines how leading organizations are addressing e-mail message management and implementing means to control their enterprise message content. Authored by IDC analysts Brian Burke, John Daly and Roseann Day, the white paper also identifies planning, deployment and administration best practices, as well as attributes of an effective technology solution. The research group developed these guidelines after conducting in-depth interviews with IT executives at companies in the financial services, software services, insurance and manufacturing industry sectors.
"As e-mail becomes increasingly pervasive to businesses, the challenges associated with extending enterprise communications to partners and customers has increased in scope and complexity," said Brian Burke, senior analyst at IDC. "While we found that many enterprises have developed up-to-date means to protect against external e-mail threats, far fewer have properly addressed other factors, for example unsolicited e-mail (spam), the legitimate internal threat associated with employee access to digital intellectual property and protection of customer-sensitive information."
IDC identified four critical success factors enterprise organizations must address to ensure effective message content management. Those key factors are:
- Iterative implementation An incremental, enterprise-tailored approach to building secure messaging policies that limits the number of "false-positives" the system returns for messages containing Spam, private customer data and intellectual property.
- Comprehensive but precise content management The ability of a secure messaging solution to scan inbound and outbound e-mail traffic and properly identify all violations of content policy (e.g., regulation violations, inappropriate content, harassment).
- Audit trails for e-mail communications The ability to selectively archive messages based on content or sender/recipient identity, in order to enable forensic or investigative analysis of enterprise e-mail traffic.
- Transparent security The need to centralize development and management of secure messaging policies at the administrator level, taking the burden away from end users.
"In order for businesses to minimize the liabilities associated with e-mail and instead capitalize on e-mail's value, IDC has concluded that the development and enforcement of company developed messaging policies is required," said Jeff Smith, chief executive officer of Tumbleweed Communications.
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