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DMARC: What It Is, Why It Matters

Article by Tony Patti

You’ve put a lot of effort into creating & maintaining your company’s brand, haven’t you?  You spend countless marketing dollars promoting your brand. Millions more go towards legal protections through trademarks, copyrights and patents.  But how much are you investing in protecting your brand from criminals and spammers who are targeting your customers with fake and malicious emails that appear to come from your brand?

The good news is that it doesn’t cost a lot to protect your brand from the negative effects of email spoofs and phishing scams. In 2012, a new email security and authentication standard was created called DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication Reporting & Conformance).

DMARC allows ISPs and other email receivers to positively identify legitimate email and reject fraudulent email sent by spammers.  Your brand’s domain reputation is protected and your customers privacy and PII (personally identifiable information) are protected from scam artists and spammers when you fully implement a DMARC compliance policy for your email marketing and communication channels.

DMARC is a DNS-based authentication standard that works with your existing SPF and DKIM authentication records.  When you publish your DMARC DNS record to your domains DNS records, ISPs will be able to verify what you want done with emails that are NOT sent from your domains.  You can specify that scam emails be sent to the recipients spam folder or have the ISP block the scam emails completely so that your customer never sees them. As part of the DMARC process, ISPs will send daily email data reports to the processor address specified in the DMARC record, enabling you to see exactly what’s happening with malicious email that attempts to impersonate your brand.

DMARC is working and the adoption rate is steadily increasing. The US Department of Homeland Security issued a DMARC directive on October 16, 2018 that requires all second-level agency domains to have valid SPF/DMARC records by January 25, 2019.

Implementing DMARC now will help protect your customers and your brand and stop malicious cyber criminals dead in their tracks.

At eDataSource, we are committed to protecting our clients’ brands and reputations.  We’ll soon be announcing the roll-out of eDataSource Brand Protection™ solution which uses DMARC technology to help safeguard your brand’s email identity.  For a sneak preview, simply request a demo and speak with one of our deliverability and authentication experts.

Further Reading:

FAQs from DMARC.org

The FTC’s DMARC Report