What are DMARC records and can they improve email security?

What are DMARC records and can they improve email security?

Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance (DMARC) is one of the most effective ways to combat email delivered by fraudsters and scammers. The two core components of DMARC — the Sender Policy Framework (SPF) and DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM) — both rely on DNS records to identify authorized senders in an email message. Enabling DKIM adds a cryptographic signature to each email. Today, the majority of major email service providers publish SPF and DKIM policies, which help prevent spammers from forging messages that purport to be from credible domains.


SPF and DKIM also allow others to examine an organization's email practices, giving recipients insight into whether a received message was sent by a human or a machine. However, adoption of these two email authentication standards is highly uneven, making it difficult for senders to determine whether their email is likely to be trusted in an inbox. SPF and DKIM implementations, along with DMARC records, are essential for business email defense; however, the deployment of these technologies is not always straightforward.

In this whitepaper, learn about best practices for implementing all three of these standards in order to prevent phishing attacks and other malicious email techniques that can target your business's brand reputation. Domains using DMARC have an easier way to proactively take control of their email security, including reporting detailed feedback about where the message came from and what it contains. To get started, you need to publish a DNS record called a DMARC policy.


While DMARC enables the administrative owner of a domain to publish a policy based on either or both standards, implementation presents a challenge, as both protocols can be prone to error when sending emails from a domain and handling email failures.


DMARC records are managed through the use of DNS, the Domain Name System that makes it possible for us to remember websites with simple text-based names like "wordpress.org," rather than having to type in a long sequence of numbers every time we want to visit one of our favorite online destinations. DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance) is an email security standard that helps deliver secure and legitimate email. Largely created by Yahoo! and AOL, DMARC is a way of ensuring the legitimacy of emails and stopping phishing attacks.


DMARC is not a specification but rather an email authentication policy. This policy helps improve the security of an email channel by ensuring that third-party emails aren't delivered without the approval of either the sender or receiver's domain. Any incorrectly configured DMARC records can demand a standard response from receivers, which can utilize spam flagging systems and deliver messages to spam folders.

 

In addition, uncorrected Create DMARC records are a direct invitation for phishing attacks. By taking advantage of DMARC records, organizations can greatly reduce both the amount and quality of spam sent using their domain names. The increase of spam being sent over the Internet has caused many businesses to suffer. To decrease the use of rapidly spreading malware, organizations need to implement DMARC records.


When DMARC records are properly set up, email security sees benefits, as unauthorized use of the owner's email domain is prevented, email delivery is simplified and domain owners gain visibility into the use of the email domain. Furthermore, owners should ensure that the server's IP address doesn't change without a mechanism to update all the DMARC and related system configurations.


Note: - EmailAuth.io is part of the Infosec Ventures group and our core value lies in taking care of your most valuable digital asset: Email. We thrive to increase your Email Deliverability and help you get the maximum ROI from your mailing campaigns and increase trust amongst your customers, partners and vendors!


Published by Ariya Rathi

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