There are guidelines for DMARC and other email authentication methods so you can ensure that all emails you send are compliant and optimize your email deliverability, avoiding spam filters for your email services. Here we’ll look at the key authentication protocols you need to know to make sure your emails make it to your prospects’ inboxes before you start any email marketing effort! Email authentication and security protocols change day by day, and email delivery depends on understanding different types of authentication methods such as SPF, DKIM & DMARC, and best practices for using them for improved email security.
In addition to these practical steps below, to fully implement SPF, DKIM, and DMARC-based email authentication tools
for your organization, you should also consider the following scenarios, if applicable. The following sections describe best practices for delivering the best emails to customer inboxes. and their email clients. I hope this detailed DMARC implementation guide demonstrates the importance of email authentication protocols for modern organizations, explains the concepts well, and provides practical steps to effectively implement SPF/DKIM/DMARC.
DKIM SPF DMARC
The good news is that SPF, DKIM, and DMARC can work together as a triple rainbow for email authentication for your email server, so we hope you have a good understanding of abbreviations like “SPF”. You may also know that SPF and DKIM are the main components of email authentication, helping to protect email senders and recipients from spam, spoofing, and phishing. While DKIM offers a more secure protocol than SPF, they work better together to protect email senders and recipients.
What is email authentication? (EMail Domain Authentication)
DKIM is used to authenticate emails sent from a given domain name, while SPF also validates emails sent by third parties on behalf of the sender’s domain. Basically, if there is a DKIM signature and the sending server is listed in the SPF record, the email will be sent to the recipient’s inbox. The signature is then verified by the sender’s DKIM text record.
This is a way to additionally sign your emails so that the receiving server can check if the sender was really you or not, allowing a sender domain to specify that one or more authentication measures protect emails sent from that domain.
Email Authentication Setup
DMARC enhances email authentication because DMARC not only requires SPF or DKIM to be passed but also requires that at least one of the domains used by SPF or DKIM be “aligned” with the domain found in the address of the from header – the central identifier. At the highest level, SPF/DKIM/DMARC implementations work by publishing DNS records for protected domains, and in conjunction with Email Service Providers (ESPs) like Gmail, prevent unauthorized attackers from sending fakes using your own domain e-mail. Adding DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication Records) to your domain and properly configuring SPF and DKIM authentication to match DMARC can improve email delivery, especially for large email providers, and keep you emails out of the spam folder.
Setting up DKIM records, SPF, and DMARC policies for your sending domain can improve email delivery, as well as reduce the risk of scammers and spoofers successfully sending emails purporting to come from your organization. With DKIM, SPF, and possibly DKIM, your domain will be a great base for email delivery and security. You can set up your own email domain for each of your email providers and let each partner manage SPF and DKIM signatures for that domain and include them in your DMARC records.
Depending on the size of your business, there may be hundreds of domains that need to be properly configured to be DMARC compliant. You don’t want your domain blacklisted and your emails going to spam. If you send out a lot of emails, whether for marketing purposes or for inbound or outbound sales, your domain’s reputation is critical and you should take care of it.
Email authentication helps improve the delivery and trust of your marketing emails by implementing protocols that verify that your domain is the sender of your messages. Become an authenticated safe sender by applying some of the most trusted verification methods when sending emails. Luckily, there are guidelines you can include in your emails to let the mail servers know you’re legit.
It is an open standard that provides a mechanism to prevent sender email address spoofing. DKIM uses “Public Key Cryptography” to verify that an email message was sent from an authorized mail server to detect forgery and prevent the sending of malicious email messages, such as spam. DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM) uses OpenDKIM to create the encrypted token needed to authenticate the sending address on the receiving server.
DMARC, or Domain-Based Message Authentication Reporting and Compliance, is an additional authentication method that uses both SPF and DKIM to verify that an email was actually sent by the user’s “Friendly-From” display domain owner. . DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance) specifies how the recipient’s mail server should handle incoming emails if they fail authentication checks (SPF, DKIM, or both). With DKIM, every email is still transmitted, rejected, or quarantined based on its DKIM or SPF signature; the difference comes later.
implicit email authentication
Passing both authentications indicates that the email was sent from an authorized server and that the header information has not been altered to forge alignment. For example, in MailChimp, email authentication removes the default authentication information (“via mcsv.net” or “on behalf of mcsv.net”) that appears next to your From Name campaigns.
You can read our Email Authentication Service Knowledge Base articles for detailed and simple instructions on setting up DMARC, SPF, and DKIM for the various third-party providers you may be using. Making sure your third-party email service uses DMARC is a small step towards protecting the entire Internet community from cyber threats. Creating an SPF record will take you one step closer to successfully delivering legitimate emails from your domain to your customers’ mailboxes.