What Is DMARC Email Security and How Do You Implement It?

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You’ve likely heard plenty of horror stories about email-based cyberattacks in the past few years. Social engineering has become a rising threat to business email and it’s reported that losses resulting from business email compromise scams totaled $1.2 billion in 2018 alone. Email remains one of the most likely targets of cyberattacks simply because it’s comparatively easier to exploit than other systems. In the face of a growing number of attacks, what can MSPs do to protect their customers from business email compromise? To point MSPs in the right direction, this guide will consider and explain a key aspect of robust email security, called Domain-based Message Authentication Reporting and Conformance (DMARC) email security.

What Is DMARC?

Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance (DMARC) is a specification for preventing email spoofing created by the Internet Engineering Task Force. DMARC builds on existing technologies, such as Sender Policy Framework (SPF) and DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM), to help prevent phishing and other malicious email spoofing. What's the difference between DMARC and SPF/DKIM? DMARC stands for Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance. It is an anti-spoofing system built on top of the two email authentication methods you may be familiar with: SPF and DKIM. What makes DMARC unique is that it doesn't just tell receivers whether an email is spoofed or not, but it tells them who to contact if they have any issues or questions about the message they've received. A Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance (DMARC) protocol is an email validation system developed by internet engineers to combat phishing attacks. DMARC allows hosts to publish policies in their DNS records. When emails are received at the host, the policy is used to direct them into various states. These policies are then audited by DMARC servers that check the authoritative DNS system for the domain owner’s published DMARC policy.

Why Is DMARC an important part of email security?

As all professionals will surely agree, it’s crucial that the emails your customers and website visitors believe to be sent by you are legitimate, which is why DMARC email security is such an important part of a strong MSP email security solution. Email is used by criminals to spread malware, launch phishing attacks, and engage in spear phishing attacks. According to the Statista group, 60% of companies claim to have been victims of spear phishing attacks, with 36% admitting to an increase in attack frequency. By adopting a new protocol called Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance (DMARC), companies are able to take action against these attacks and prevent data leakage that leads to major financial losses.

Not so many years ago, traditional email authentication techniques—DKIM and SPF—provided sufficient protection from email spoofing and phishing scams. However, as cybercriminals adapted to the landscape, attack techniques have evolved to bypass these security measures. To achieve high-security business email you should use DMARC, SPF, and DKIM in combination. DMARC will create a link between SPF and DKIM. Email security is vital. Spam, phishing, and spoofing are rampant in today’s digital environment, so it’s important to ensure your domain implements the appropriate authentication methods to prevent spoofing. DMARC, when incorporated with SPF & DKIM, protects brands by flagging fraudulent emails that try to impersonate your company’s identity. It also helps cut down on malicious emails that don’t originate from our stakeholders; especially valuable for large organizations. Read on to learn how you can protect your brand—and email reputation—with DMARC.

How do you implement DMARC?

The process of implementing DMARC is fairly simple, especially if you work with a DNS server administrator. Your DNS server administrator should be able to add your DMARC record to your DNS so you can begin monitoring your chosen domain. You will start receiving reports, which will give you insight into where email traffic using that domain is coming from. In doing so, you might identify some vendors, platforms, or partners you didn’t realize were sending emails on your behalf.

Choosing the right email security solution

Their email security solutions use DMARC, SPF, and DKIM to ensure that your emails are protected and secure against spoofing attack and phishing attempts. You do not need to worry about these security features because the company handles them for you; emails that contain data sent from your domain will pass through Barracuda's system and be checked for DMARC, SPF, and DKIM information. Email security is a challenge for most businesses, but it is especially so for those with an international presence. A cyber attack can quickly become a problem if you do not have all of the right tools in place to detect and stop the attack. With that in mind, this guide has provided information on three email security protocols that will allow you to secure your email communications. Mail Assure is a cloud-based solution with advanced threat protection capabilities that safeguards both inbound and outbound email, making it easier than ever for your customers to avoid an email-borne attack. Mail Assure features real-time threat recognition and leverages a variety of filtering technologies, including impersonation protection and email anti-phishing. The product supports DMARC, SPF, and DKIM, affording you a comprehensive business email security solution. The right email security solution can help your customers avoid falling victim to email phishing scams and identity theft. Mail Assure is easy to deploy and makes it simple to protect against impersonation, spam, viruses, and other threats. It fully integrates with all major email service providers (ESPs) and enables compliance with DMARC, SPF, and DKIM. Take advantage of the free trial here.


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