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Proofpoint Reports Findings of Email Security Trends Survey Conducted at RSA Conference 2010

Mar 9, 2010
Sunnyvale, CA – March 9, 2010 – Proofpoint, Inc. (, the leading provider of SaaS email security, archiving and data loss prevention solutions, today announced findings from a survey of 122 RSA Conference 2010 attendees, conducted at Proofpoint's exposition booth, about email security trends. Key findings from the survey include:
  • Spear phishing continues to be a significant security issueM: Nearly half of respondents (48%) believe that, in the past year, their organization was targeted by a phishing email designed specifically to compromise their own users. While 27% of respondents do not believe they were targeted by such an attack, 25% said they were "not sure."

  • Adoption of email encryption technology increases: The majority of respondents (59%) say that their organization has already deployed an email encryption solution. Another 19% say that they intend to deploy email encryption in the future, with most respondents saying that they intend to deploy within the next year.Adoption of email encryption technology has been steadily increasing over time. In a Proofpoint study from June 2009, 43% of organizations said that they had deployed an email encryption solution.

  • Effectiveness still the top criterion when selecting email security solutions: 43% of respondents said that "effectiveness/accuracy" was the most important factor when selecting an email security solution, while 20% said that "ease of administration" was most important. 16% said "cost of solution" was most important. 11% selected choice of "deployment method (e.g., SaaS versus appliance)", while just 6% cited "vendor brand/reputation" as the most important decision factor.

  • Uncaught spam and phishing emails top email annoyances list: Asked about the "most annoying" types of email, 39% of respondents cited spam that gets through their organization's filter as their top email annoyance. 27% said the same of uncaught phishing emails. But for a third of respondents, various types of legitimate email were the most annoying. 15% of respondents cited legitimate email newsletters and marketing emails that are sent too frequently as their top annoyance. 10% said legitimate emails from coworkers or business contacts that "I just don't have time to answer" were most annoying. 7% cited social media notifications and other types of legitimate, but non-essential, email messages as most annoying.

"Enterprises rely on email as the most important channel for business communications and are keenly aware of the increasing sophistication of inbound security threats that threaten the effectiveness, efficiency and usability of their email systems," said Peter Galvin, chief marketing officer at Proofpoint. "But aside from inbound threats, companies realize that protecting confidential corporate information and private personal data in email is just as critical from a business and compliance perspective."

Survey participants submitted their answers electronically at the Proofpoint booth. Half of respondents were from organizations with 2000 or more email users. More than three quarters of respondents held security or other technical job titles, while less than one quarter held legal, compliance or other non-IT roles.

Learn More about Email Security and Compliance in Today's Enterprise

To learn more about Proofpoint's easy-to-deploy and easy-to-use policy-based email encryption solution, register to download two complimentary whitepapers -- Proofpoint's Protecting Enterprise Data with Proofpoint Encryption and Osterman Research's The Critical Need for Encrypted Email and File Transfer Solutions -- by visiting:

About Proofpoint, Inc.
Proofpoint focuses on the art and science of cloud-based email security, eDiscovery and compliance solutions. Organizations around the world depend on Proofpoint's expertise, patented technologies and on-demand delivery system to protect against spam and viruses, safeguard privacy, encrypt sensitive information, and archive messages for easier management and discovery. Proofpoint's enterprise email solutions mitigate the challenges and amplify the benefits of enterprise messaging. Learn more at


Proofpoint, Proofpoint Enterprise Protection, Proofpoint Enterprise Privacy and Proofpoint Enterprise Archive are trademarks or registered trademarks of Proofpoint, Inc. in the U.S. and other countries. All other trademarks contained herein are the property of their respective owners.

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