Email traffic in an enterprise sector should be secured in order to strengthen the security apparatus of the email system. Read on to know how to secure an enterprise based email system…
Online fraudsters are known to impersonate well known brands and use the brand’s trusted reputation to send emails to recipients and orchestrate an imposture. The victims end up giving away sensitive information like credit card pins, passwords, or even end up making payments to the online fraudsters. Known as Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance (DMARC) secures your organization against such email threats.
From an organization — whenever employees send emails to their customers, DMARC ensures that legitimate email is authenticated and the sender’s identity is verified by the recipients’ email service provider. Fraudulent emails appearing to come from domains under the organization’s control is blocked. The organization can even include domains that do not send mails or even defensively registered domains in its DMARC policy.
Inbound emails that fail DMARC authentication do not reach the recipient’s Inbox, thus filtering out phishing mails. So, if you get an email from the Income Tax department with a “From” address having firstname.lastname@example.org, did cpc.gov.in really authorize that message?
DMARC builds on two existing and widely deployed email authentication techniques, the Sender Policy Framework (SPF) and DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM).
The two key values of DMARC are domain alignment and reporting.
Phishing emails generally abuse the visible “From” header of emails by forging it. DMARC’s alignment feature prevents spoofing of the “From” header address by:
1. Matching the “From” header domain name with the “envelope from” domain name (also know as the “return-path” address ) used during an SPF check, and
2. Matching the “From” header domain name with the “d= domain name” in the email’s DKIM signature.
DMARC allows responsible organizations to instruct email providers who receive emails from the domains that they own, on how to handle unauthenticated emails via a DMARC policy, removing any guesswork on how to deal with messages that fail DMARC authentication.
What sets DMARC apart from other email authentication protocols is its reporting function. With DMARC, you can see who is sending email on behalf of your domain, your brand, and prevent spammers from using it to send fraudulent email.
The reporting feature of DMARC means that DMARC enabled receivers will tell you:
1. How many messages they’ve received using your domains in the From: address
2. Where these messages came from
3. Whether these messages passed DKIM and SPF checks.
For Inbox providers, it is easier to determine that messages are not bad. Such emails are more likely to get delivered to the recipient’s mail quickly and without mistakes. Thus setting up a DMARC policy and choosing a right service provider to send your emails only helps in strengthening your brand’s reputation.
On this aspect the enterprise based email service providers should help you to defend your domains reputation through the implementation of DMARC for your organization’s domain names. The enterprise based email security team should help you through the entire life cycle of implementing DMARC — studying your outbound email traffic pattern (including marketing mails sent through 3rd party email campaign tools), configuring SPF and DKIM records in your DNS for all your domains (including domains that do not send mails or even defensively registered domains), configuring the DMARC record in your DNS with the right policies from the “monitoring” to “blocking” modes. Features like the DMARC dashboard integrated in your administrators tools gives you visibility of your outbound email traffic pattern which include graphical stats of the source of outbound traffic and details of phishing attempts done using your domain names.