What is Raptor Forward And Store Transport (Raptor FAST) and Why Do I Need It?
Spammers use every trick in the book to get their message through to your inbox. One of their tricks is to mass e-mail using a database of possible names (email@example.com, ann@...,; annabel@...; annabelle@...; bob@...; bobby@...; bobbie@...; charles@...; charlie@...; etc.).
Spammers will send tens or even hundreds of thousands of e-mails to have only a handful get through, but they don't care because they are typically using stolen resources. This is called a dictionary attack.
Another trick spammers use is to attack your backup and relay servers hoping these servers will have less effective anti-spam abilities.
Or they can even use these backup and relay servers to send messages to other people using your servers by forging the From: address in the e-mail and cause non-delivery reports (NDRs) to be sent. This NDR is then spam to an innocent third-party that you indirectly assisted in delivering!
Because of these tactics, an important tool in fighting spammers is protecting all your servers against these attacks. To protect these servers, your backup and relay servers need access to verify all of the valid e-mails for your mail server. This is called “Extending the Edge” of your e-mail network.
Unfortunately, extending the edge can be complicated. In some cases, it can be difficult to get a list of valid e-mails. In others, testing each address in real-time might put too much strain on the servers potentially delaying e-mails. Furthermore, testing in real-time can create a large problem during times when your legitimate mail server is offline due to internet outages, power outages, or even routine maintenance. We’ve seen many tens of thousands of e-mails from dictionary attacks queued up even from short outages for a single server delaying e-mail for hours or even days after the mail server has returned to service!
On top of these problems, Microsoft has made it more difficult to test in real-time with Microsoft Exchange 2008 because the recipient filtering that was first available in Microsoft Exchange 2003 now requires you to deploy a Microsoft Exchange 2007 Edge Transport Server. This process, originally known as a Gateway Server Role, is overkill to implement just a simple recipient filter.
To solve all these issues, the programming gnomes at PCCC have developed a painless and straightforward active directory plug-in we call the Raptor Forward And Store Transport or Raptor FAST for short. Raptor FAST extends the edge of your e-mail network to our servers for our Raptor Anti-Spam and Anti-Malware customers and protects your network against all of these attacks!
Best of all, there is no charge to our existing Raptor customers! And using Raptor FAST is simple - once Raptor FAST is installed, just double click on the Raptor FAST icon each time you create or update an e-mail address. Raptor FAST will automatically submit your valid e-mail recipients list stopping the spammers in their tracks.