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See what threats are lurking in your Office 365 with Cloudflare Email Retro Scan


4 min read

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We are now announcing the ability for Cloudflare customers to scan old messages within their Office 365 Inboxes for threats. This Retro Scan will let you look back seven fourteen days and see what threats your current email security tool has missed.

Why run a Retro Scan

Speaking with customers, we often hear that they do not know the condition of their organization’s mailboxes. Organizations have an email security tool or use Microsoft’s built-in protection but do not understand how effective their current solution is. We find that these tools often let malicious emails through their filters increasing the risk of compromise within the company.

In our pursuit to help build a better Internet, we are enabling Cloudflare customers to use Retro Scan to scan messages within their inboxes using our advanced machine learning models for free. Our Retro Scan will detect and highlight any threats we find so that customers can clean up their inboxes by addressing them within their email accounts. With this information, customers can also implement additional controls, such as using Cloudflare or their preferred solution, to prevent similar threats from reaching their mailbox in the future.

Running a Retro Scan

Customers can navigate to the Cloudflare dashboard where they will see under the Area 1 tab the Retro Scan option:

To be able to access the messages to scan, Cloudflare needs authorization to be able to scan messages. You start this process by providing Cloudflare with the appropriate permissions to scan messages. The second authorization will allow the Cloudflare application  to access Active Directory. This is needed to understand which users are within the organization along with which groups they belong to which helps our algorithms better assess if a message is malicious.

Once all the authorizations are given, you have one final step which is to pick which domains we want to scan as well as providing us information about the other email security vendors who are protecting your inboxes.

Finally, customers can click “Generate Retro Scan” which will prompt Cloudflare Area 1 Email Security to start scanning older messages. Since this process takes time, we provide customers with an email alert when the scan is done.

Analyzing The Results

What you will be presented with is a quick breakdown of what threats we found within your organization’s email inboxes. The top section breaks down all of our detections by type. Here you can find the count of Malicious, Suspicious, Spoof, Spam, and Bulk messages. We also highlight the most important ones to look at under phish emails. At any point you can click the Search button to get more information about the emails with those labels.

The report also showcases the top targeted employees as well as the most common places where threats originate from. All these statistics are meant to provide a better understanding of what is going on within your company inbox.

How to sign up

The retro scan is currently in a closed beta. If you are interested in running a retro scan on your Office 365 email domains please reach out to your Cloudflare contact and we will get it added to your account.

After running a Retro Scan and seeing the results you can either choose to purchase Cloudflare Area 1 to prevent future threats from making it into your inbox or choose to set up a phishing risk assessment which is a 30 day free trial of the Area 1 product. Whereas the Retro Scan is a great tool to see what latent threats exist, a phishing risk assessment can help you gain better visibility on all the tools we have to keep mailboxes clean.

To get started you can click the “Request Trial” button at the bottom of the Retro Scan Report, fill out the corresponding form and someone from Cloudflare will reach out or you can reach out directly to your Cloudflare contact.

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