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Is putting e-mail files outside the company firewall safe?

There is some discussion here of putting e-mail files on our e-mail relay server, which is outside the company firewall. People currently access via VPN but would like to not carry a laptop around all the time. Some people question the security of this. Have you any suggestions on providing more secure access?
While in theory your data should be safe, I never like to have any sensitive/critical data open on the Internet. You are just inviting hackers to attack you. Personally, I would look to using a reverse proxy or multi-tier DMZ with DWA access to do this. There are also appliances, such as the one from Whale Communications, that can perform this function.

Dig Deeper on Lotus Notes Domino Firewalls

Hellman: Authentication at every access point

In the 1970s, Martin Hellman and Whitfield Diffie wrote the recipe for one of today's most widely used security algorithms in a paper called "New Directions in Cryptography." The paper mapped out the Diffie-Hellman key exchange, a major advancement in Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) technology that allows for secure online transactions and is used in such popular protocols as the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) and Secure Shell (SSH). In 2000, they received the prestigious Marconi Foundation award for their contributions.

With the world increasingly dependent on the Internet for commerce, and a financially-motivated underground of malcode writers working overtime to exploit its weaknesses, there's been plenty of debate over how cryptography must evolve to meet new threats. In this two-part feature, Diffie and Hellman discuss the threats that concern them most and where they think the technology they helped advance is headed.

Part 1: Hellman, now professor emeritus of electrical engineering at Stanford University, explains why phishing is one of the biggest threats we face, why strong authentication is needed at every access point and why security add-ons won't do much to ease the threats of cyberspace.

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