Email Link Analysis

A Palo Alto Networks firewall can extract HTTP/HTTPS links contained in SMTP and POP3 email messages and forward the links for WildFire analysis. The firewall only extracts links and associated session information (sender, recipient, and subject) from email messages; it does not receive, store, forward, or view the email message.
WildFire visits submitted links to determine if the corresponding web page hosts any exploits or displays phishing activity. A link that WildFire finds to be malicious or phishing is:
  • Recorded on the firewall as a WildFire Submissions log entry. The WildFire analysis report that details the behavior and activity observed for the link is available for each WildFire Submissions log entry. The log entry also includes the email header information—email sender, recipient, and subject—so that you can identify the message and delete it from the mail server, or mitigate the threat if the email has been delivered or opened.
  • Added to PAN-DB and the URL is categorized as malware.
The firewall forwards email links in batches of 100 email links or every two minutes (depending on which limit is hit first). Each batch upload to WildFire counts as one upload toward the upload per-minute capacity for the given firewall model (Firewall File Forwarding Capacity by Model ). If a link included in an email corresponds to a file download instead of a URL, the firewall forwards the file only if the corresponding file type is enabled for WildFire analysis.
To enable the firewall to forward links included in emails for WildFire analysis, see Forward Files for WildFire Analysis . With a PAN-DB URL Filtering license, you can also block user access to malicious and phishing sites.

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