Dear Secure Companies…

Dear Secure Companies,

Please stop sending me emails to pick up critical documents or surveys where the URLs I need to follow point into random unverifiable domains. A link that leads to a URL like:

http://wl1.peer360.com/b/J9dqJDSALAS87ZWR3Te7/mle.asp?hl=5621312750&r=BBGGHHSF&CID=305151

is not going to inspire confidence and, assuming it isn’t spear-fishing or malware, is teaching end users bad practice. That is, it’s teaching end users to follow random links rather than verifiable domains. Encouraging recipients to follow such links is completely askew to modern security awareness training which is to tell the users not to follow random links.

I know that using 3rd party marketing, survey, and even content providers is the norm, but you need to make the effort to ensure the URLs fall under your own verifiable domain, not some random 3rd party domain. Otherwise, unfortunately, you are part of the problem.

I say this because in my day job I regularly get emails from major security companies or entities handling PII that embed links in their email going to what appear to be random (though undoubtedly valid) sites. This is bad practice and you are not helping the overall picture when doing so.

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