Lake Michigan Financial Corporation Deploys Proofpoint Messaging Security Gateway Appliance to Secure Outbound Email and Stop Incoming Spam

Proofpoint Maintains High Levels of Anti-spam Effectiveness in the Face of New, Sophisticated Spamming Techniques


Cupertino, Calif. – October 1, 2007 – Proofpoint, Inc., the leading provider of unified email security and data loss prevention solutions, today announced that Lake Michigan Financial Corporation is using the Proofpoint Messaging Security Gateway™ appliance to defend against inbound spam and virus threats and automatically detect confidential personal information in outbound email messages, including social security, credit card and account numbers. The Proofpoint deployment makes it easy for Lake Michigan Financial to follow best practices for data protection and to comply with data security regulations, such as the Gramm-Leach Bliley Act (GLBA).

Lake Michigan Financial Corporation, the holding company for two Michigan banks—The Bank of Holland and The Bank of Northern Michigan—turned to Proofpoint after experiencing administrative and effectiveness problems with its previous hosted anti-spam solution, which required excessive management time and failed to properly identify large numbers of spam messages. With the high rate of false negatives, employees were spending large amounts of time sifting through incoming messages to identify valid business-related emails.

With Proofpoint, spam messages are stopped right at the gateway with extremely high accuracy and Lake Michigan Financial Corporation has one cohesive, easy-to-manage system to ensure that end-user inboxes stay spam-free. Powered by Proofpoint MLX™ machine learning technology, the Proofpoint Spam Detection™ delivers higher than 99% accuracy against all types of spam including hard-to-detect image-based spam, PDF spam and other forms of attachment-based spam.

Protecting clients’ private financial information is a critical priority for Lake Michigan Financial Corporation. With its integrated email security and data loss prevention features, Proofpoint was the natural choice for protecting both inbound and outbound messages. In order to automate compliance with GLBA, Lake Michigan Financial Corporation uses the Proofpoint Regulatory Compliance™ module to prevent the improper disclosure of sensitive customer data via outbound email. Using a combination of Proofpoint’s built-in GLBA compliance rules, plus its own customized “smart identifiers” that scan for individual account numbers, noncompliant emails are detected with extremely high accuracy. Lake Michigan Financial’s customized policies (such as blocking messages that contain sensitive data) are then applied automatically. The company also makes use of Proofpoint’s email firewall features to enforce acceptable use policies for outbound email, such as limiting certain attachment types and enforcing maximum message size rules.

“Proofpoint was the only data loss prevention solution that made it easy to automate GLBA compliance. The Proofpoint appliance worked right out the box, mitigating the risks associated with both inbound and outbound email, with virtually no instances of false positives,” said John Vander Velde, manager of IT for Lake Michigan Financial Corporation. “Proofpoint provides the most comprehensive and effective messaging security solution on the market and we’ve been extremely satisfied with our choice.”

Lake Michigan Financial Corporation has also deployed the Proofpoint Virus Protection™ module to protect its end users from viruses, worms and other malicious code. This module is fully integrated into Proofpoint's email security platform, meaning that each email message is opened just once and virus scanning is performed in parallel with other forms of message analysis, such as spam and content compliance scanning, resulting in optimal, enterprise-grade performance.
“With the growing number of data security regulations, organizations are looking for ways to automate compliance, while also fully protecting their messaging infrastructures,” said Sandra Vaughan, senior vice president of products and marketing for Proofpoint. “Proofpoint provides financial services firms, enterprises, government agencies, retailers, and educational institutions with a robust and flexible solution to safely take advantage of the business benefits of communicating via email and other electronic messaging streams.”

Proofpoint offers a free, 45-day trial version of its breakthrough virtual appliance for messaging security. Register to download your free trial by visiting:

To download complete case studies about leading enterprises, universities and government organizations that have deployed Proofpoint’s messaging security solutions, please visit Proofpoint’s online Resource Center at:

About Proofpoint, Inc.
Proofpoint provides unified email security and data loss prevention solutions for enterprises, universities, government organizations and ISPs to defend against inbound threats such as spam and viruses, prevent leaks of confidential and private information across all protocols, and encrypt sensitive emails. Proofpoint’s products are controlled by a single management and policy console and are powered by Proofpoint MLX™ technology, an advanced machine learning system developed by Proofpoint scientists and engineers. Proofpoint provides the most scalable and flexible deployment model including: hardware appliance, virtual appliance, hosted services and software. For more information, please visit

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