If DMARC is really important for email security, then why doesn’t everyone deploy it? It’s true that email authentication helps improve email deliverability and prevents phishing attacks, but its implementation is complex, which causes complications. DMARC enablement in mid and large companies comes with its own challenges rising due to the involvement of more people and multiple domains.
Over the years, PowerDMARC has come across many impediments and concerns on the same. So, we considered discussing the major ones here while also suggesting feasible solutions to them.
But before that, you should know how to implement DMARC.
Challenges Enterprises are Facing While Adopting DMARC
1. Accidental Cut-Off of Critical Services
Companies often lack the confidence that they know all the legitimate services sending emails using their domain. Their concern is genuine, as the consequences of such errors can be detrimental to a company’s growth, marketing efforts, and communication with clients, prospects, media, etc.
That’s why we advise going step-by-step with the DMARC policy; start with the ‘none’ policy and monitor your email-sending domain’s activities which should be followed by switching to the ‘quarantine’ policy till you’re sure you’re ready to move to the reject policy. However, the hard truth is that the state of complete confidence may never arrive!
2. Compliance with Government Orders
Countries like the US, UK, Japan, etc. emphasize DMARC setup and have even set it as a baseline requirement for doing business, primarily in association with government agencies. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) 18-01 Binding Operational Directive issued an order for all federal agencies to set their DMARC policy to reject by October 16, 2018. Similar standards have been observed in the UK as well.
Now the challenge is not all companies have the confidence to shift to the reject policy as some of their legitimate emails can also bounce back. But, they aren’t aware that they can depart from these compliances by providing a written explanation justifying their case.
3. The Marketing Team Resists DMARC
The marketing teams are reluctant to email authentication because if you send emails in bulk, there’s a possibility that many of them will not be delivered to recipients’ mailboxes at all. Also, if you use @yahoo.com, @aol.com, or @gmail.com for email marketing, emails won’t pass DMARC authentication checks, and your domain’s deliverability rate will be affected.
Its solution is to use your own domain for sending marketing emails. This way, DMARC would perform at its best efficiency. Moreover, a fully deployed DMARC allows you to set up Brand Indicators for Message Identification or BIMI, allowing a trademarked logo to appear next to your emails right in the customer inbox. This boosts open and click-through rates.
4. Employees Using Shadow IT Disapproves DMARC
In mid and large-scale companies, employees often indulge in shadow IT, which refers to the use of devices, tools, and services that aren’t officially approved by the company. They use them to boost productivity and drive innovation. With the use of shadow IT, employees unintentionally give opportunities to hackers to exploit security vulnerabilities.
By plugging-in DMARC, you’ll know about the existence of such tools and can even know the employees using them. That’s why employees using shadow IT are reluctant towards DMARC compliance.
Read more: DMARC and Shadow IT
5. Overcoming the 10 SPF Lookup Limit
Whenever a DNS query is made, it adds up toward the 10 SPF DNS lookup limit, and enterprises reach this limit very fast. Exceeding the lookup limit causes an SPF Permerror, and DMARC considers it a ‘fail.’ This demands fixing your SPF record.
PowerDMARC’s automatic and hassle-free SPF flattening tool instantly replaces all the domains in your SPF record with their IP addresses, eliminating the need for multiple DNS lookups.
6. Invalid SPF Record
Often enterprises outsource responsibilities like marketing and PR to an agency and add their domain to their SPF record using the include tag. Everything works fine until the third-party sender (the agency) changes their domain without informing you. This invalidates your SPF record, affecting the DMARC’s verification process.
Long-term and diligent monitoring for changes in your SPF record prevents getting caught in action outside of your control. It’s also suggested to launch and use CRM tools on their own domain.
7. Global Compliance Challenges
Large-scale enterprises also come across cross-country challenges. If you work out of a Europe-based office, you must comply with GDPR, the world’s strictest privacy and security law. Moreso, several EU-based private and public organizations are reluctant to overseas data transfer. As per GDPR’s privacy regulations, even IP addresses are considered PII.
For companies raising concerns about this issue, we send the DMARC reports for domains and subdomains that are restricted to be used for sending emails to certain regions only.
8. DMARC Management
Another challenge in an enterprise is who will manage the DMARC project and be the point of contact for people responsible for different services. We at PowerDMARC offer such project and process management services. Contact us for a long-term DMARC adoption to fight against phishing attacks and boost email deliverability rate.
9. Interpretation Issues
It’s challenging to read DMARC reports which consequently causes trouble in completing its implementation. Often companies hand over the responsibility of DMARC management to their in-house IT experts without considering that they aren’t really adept at email security and its protocols. They get stuck at DMARC’s none or quarantine policy and fail to offer the best protection with the reject policy.
10. Including Third-Party Vendors
It’s important to integrate third-party vendors into your published DMARC record, however, the risk of email domain spoofing gets doubled. You may also face failures in allowlisting third-party senders with DNS providers as they sign emails with their domain by default, which results in a mismatch.
Overcoming Enterprise Challenges with PowerDMARC
DMARC can be a complex undertaking for any enterprise. From navigating technical intricacies to addressing organizational challenges, there are several hurdles that need to be overcome. However, the benefits of DMARC far outweigh the challenges.
DMARC empowers businesses to communicate with confidence and safeguard their customers’ trust. So, embrace the journey, equip yourself with knowledge, and take the necessary steps to fortify your email infrastructure with DMARC—it’s a journey worth embarking on.
You can get in touch with our DMARC specialists to leverage their expertise in strengthening your company’s email security today!