Email Security Blog

Leveraging Artificial Intelligence in the Fight Against Phishing

The world is gradually learning what INKY and Managed Service Providers (MSPs) have known for some time: Artificial intelligence (AI) is a powerful tool that can be used to improve cybersecurity.

AI-powered threat detection systems can analyze vast amounts of data to identify threats that evade traditional security measures. Meanwhile, machine learning algorithms improve threat detection by continuously learning from new data and adapting to evolving threats. When done well, this all leads to enhanced phishing detection including the ability to:

  • Analyze the content of an email, the sender's address, and the links in the email
  • Recognize malicious patterns in network traffic
  • Detect suspicious activity on user accounts
  • Signal out new types of malware
  • Identify fraudulent websites and social media profiles
  • Provide real-time protection against zero-day threats

…and much more.

INKY delivers the most powerful AI anti-phishing technology available. INKY begins by automatically scanning every email and performing a high-level analysis. Once the phishing analysis is complete, INKY applies one of more than 60 different interactive banners, which notify the user of the email’s phishing threat level. Gray is neutral. Yellow advises caution. Red signals danger. The banners also explain the threat, ultimately educating and guiding users to make smarter email security decisions.

But wait. There is more. Much more.

Combatting Phishing with Artificial Intelligence

Let’s look at a few ways INKY uses AI to combat phishing, thereby making the world a bit safer.

QR Code Recognition: QR code usage has skyrocketed in the past decade, especially during the pandemic. More recently, cybercriminals figured out how to use this popular tool to harvest credentials from unsuspecting victims. Artificial intelligence has helped INKY catch thousands and thousands of QR code phishing scams. To detect malicious image-based phish, INKY uses optical character recognition (OCR) that extracts the text from an attached email and uses it in combination with other artificial intelligence algorithms to detect an email as dangerous.

Social Graphing and Sender Profiling: Social Graphing involves plotting out the interconnections among different people, groups, and organizations within a network. INKY build profiles and models of users based on legitimate email that comes their way. Then, when INKY sees an email from a sender that doesn’t match a known profile, it sends an impersonation warning.

Conversation Hijacking: One of the most worrisome tactics phishers use today is conversation hijacking. In short, after breaking into a person’s email account, the phisher scans their emails until they find one that offers an opportunity to cash in. Masquerading as the employee, they insert themselves into existing email conversation that usually involve the transfer of funds. They might instruct a company’s AP team to conduct a wire transfer or perhaps request a change in banking information for a large vendor’s payments. Either way, the money is directed to the phishers own accounts. INKY defends users against conversation hacking through the use of machine learning, detecting forgeries even when they come from the real sender’s email address.

Advanced Attachment Analysis: Email attachments can contain dangerous types of malware, designed to disable your computer, network, or system. However, INKY’s AI-powered Advanced Attachment Analysis is capable of breaking attachments down into separate parts or objects and analyzing them separately. Each is evaluated for consistencies with Criminal Enterprise Malware Platforms, ransomware families, malware families, malicious documents, executable and macro functions, and multistage exploit tactics.

Graymail: Isolating graymail isn’t something everyone can do. It takes intelligent machine learning algorithms and delivery settings to dynamically detect and remediate graymail. INKY’s Graymail Protection examines message features like email headers, links, body text, and more to determine if the Graymail threat category should be applied. Learn More.

Learn What INKY Can Do For You

Using AI is a relatively new opportunity for phishers. There is no doubt that it will continue to make their phishing emails more complex and harder to recognize. Thankfully, INKY has always relied on AI in order to stay ahead of the game. It’s why we’re so well-equipped to fight phishing.

If you’re ready to explore what INKY can off your business and your customers, now is the perfect time to become an INKY Partner. You’ll have the tools you need to gain new business, and technology to help keep your customers’ email secure. Schedule a free demonstration or become a partner today.


INKY is an award-winning, behavioral email security platform that blocks phishing threats, prevents data leaks, and coaches users to make smart decisions. Like a cybersecurity coach, INKY signals suspicious behaviors with interactive email banners that guide users to take safe action on any device or email client. IT teams don’t face the burden of filtering every email themselves or maintaining multiple systems. Through powerful technology and intuitive user engagement, INKY keeps phishers out for good. Learn why so many companies trust the security of their email to INKY. Request an online demonstration today.