Introduction: What is DMARC, and what can it do for you?
DMARC, or Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance is a technical standard that helps organizations protect their email domains from being used in spam and phishing attacks.
DMARC allows organizations to create a policy for how their domains should be authenticated and then receive reports on all the messages that failed authentication. It enforces the recipient to ascertain that the sender is authorized to send their message on behalf of the domain. This allows organizations to quickly identify and action against any fraudulent messages that any fraudulent server may send in their name.
What is a DMARC report, and how can you get one?
DMARC is an email authentication protocol that allows senders and receivers to agree on a policy for email messages. DMARC reports will enable you to see how well your email messages are authenticated.
DMARC reports are defined in DNS records managed by your domain registrar. When an email message is sent that is not authenticated with DMARC, the receiver can send a report back to the Email ID specified in the DNS record indicating that there was an issue with the delivery of that message.
This can be used for various purposes, such as informing the domain owner that one of their sending servers is failing authentication or that someone might be attempting to spoof emails to come on behalf of your domain. The domain owner receives the DMARC report as an email with the report as an attachment. The email id used for sending the DMARC report is controlled by the “rua” attribute in your DMARC record. They can then decide whether they would like to take any action based on the results of the DMARC report.
How often do mailbox providers send DMARC reports?
DMARC protocol allows domain owners to receive reports about messages that fail DMARC authentication. The reports can help organizations identify illegitimate messages and protect their users from phishing attacks.
Mailbox providers send DMARC reports according to the frequency specified in the DMARC policy. Most mailbox providers send DMARC reports daily, but some may send them less frequently or more frequently. Reports usually include the domain name of the sender, the message subject, the date and time of the message, and a list of failed authentication checks.
Understanding DMARC Reports
DMARC reports are a valuable resource for email administrators but can be difficult to understand at first. The report provides information about the messages sent, received, or blocked by the DMARC policy.
The DMARC report is an XML file, compressed in a zip format and sent as an email. As the recipient email address provider sends the DMARC report, it’s natural to contain the email count and the number of failures for DMARC, SPF, and DKIM. Along with the DMARC policy of your domain, that was used for validation of the authenticity of the sender.
DMARC report also contains the sending server’s IP, DKIM, and SPF domain used for verification, along with the “From” Header or Envelope Header. It contains start time, end time, reporting organization, report number, reporting organization, and reporter’s email id are also mentioned in a DMARC report.
DMARC report usage :
Inspect your sending sources
DMARC report usage can help protect your email reputation. Email senders need to be aware of their sending sources and how receivers perceive them. DMARC reports can provide great insights into how receivers treat your email and help you take corrective action if necessary. This also helps one identify if there is any legacy leftover server still sending emails on your domain’s behalf if you have changed or infra or moved your service / hosting from one provider to another.
Monitor email authentication
Email authentication is a process that allows email senders to prove their identities to email receivers and protect their email messages from being fraudulently altered or deleted. Email authentication works by using digital signatures, which are created using a sender’s private key to verify the sender’s identity and DKIM for the integrity of the message.
There are three types of email authentication: Sender Policy Framework (SPF), DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM), and Domain Message Authentication Reporting and Conformance (DMARC). For DMARC authentication to succeed, DMARC records (DNS records) are usually configured to allow either SPF or DKIM to succeed.
It’s a general practice in DMARC to use SPF or DKIM, as SPF protocol can fail in-lieu of SRS protocol (if you are forwarding domain). Similarly, DKIM can fail if one of your sending servers doesn’t support DKIM signing.
Detect unauthorized use of your domains
Are you worried about someone attempting to send emails from your domain name without permission? SMTP, by itself, is a completely insecure protocol. Hence, any SMTP server in the world can send an email on behalf of any domain. That’s what we want to prevent.
DMARC report gives you the exact sending server IPs which failed your domain’s DMARC authentication. You can then go to a service like Slimdomain.com and get the hostname for that IP, along with organization details. These details can be used to contact the fraudulent SMTP server’s organization and take them down to protect your domain’s reputation.
DMARC report: Do you need it?
DMARC allows email senders to indicate that their messages are protected by SPF and DKIM, two email authentication standards. Receivers can use the information in the DMARC to determine whether the messages they receive are likely to be spam, phishing, or spoofed messages. Suppose the messages are likely to be spam, phishing, or spoofed. In that case, recipients can take appropriate measures to block certain email sources from their mail servers.
The action taken by the recipient servers is reflected in the DMARC report. For detecting unauthorized use of your domains themselves, we find DMARC Report worth it.
Did we mention Mutant Mail gives you a free DMARC report for every domain associated with us?
Sending DMARC Reports Outside Your Domain
DMARC reports are a valuable source of information for email senders. By understanding the reports, senders can improve their email deliverability and sender reputation. However, there may be times when you need to send DMARC reports outside of your domain. This could be because you want to share data with another organization. For example, Mutant Mail receives a DMARC report on behalf of all domains hosted on Mutant Mail.
The most common reason you would need to send DMARC reports outside your domain is :
- if you manage multiple domains and want all the reports across your domains to go in one place.
- Or send it to an external service to get a better visual representation of the DMARC report’s data.
DMARC reports are a great way to keep track of your domain’s email authentication and protect your domain from spoofing and phishing attacks.
Conclusion: Protect Your Reputation with DMARC Report
DMARC is the next step in email authentication, and it’s crucial that you implement it on your domain to protect your reputation. DMARC Report offers a free DMARC implementation and reporting service, so you can be sure your domain is protected.
In conclusion, a DMARC report can be a valuable tool for email administrators and domain owners. It can help them to identify and troubleshoot authentication and deliverability issues. Using a DMARC report can improve their email marketing campaigns and ensure that their messages reach their intended recipients.