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If you’ve been following the DMARC conversation in the industry, you probably have lots of questions. Why do we need DMARC? How does it help prevent domain spoofing? We are here to answer all of it. Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance (DMARC) is the technology that helps authenticate legitimate email and helps prevent spoofing. DMARC also provides insight into your email marketing efforts and stops your domain from being used by cyber-criminals. It allows email receivers to authenticate, report on and enforce policy around emails sent from domain names they don’t control.

DMARC is a vital defense against Domain spoofing, cyber-threats like phishing attacks as well as increasing transparency into the emails you send. DMARC improves your digital brand protection and the overall deliverability of your email marketing programs by differentiating legitimate emails from fraudulent ones.

Which Businesses Should Use DMARC?

The answer is quite simple. All. Irrespective of your company size or industry, in the current situation each and every organization needs information security and domain protection. Most businesses (knowingly or unknowingly) have already deployed SPF and DKIM to protect their email domains, but only an estimated one-third have actually implemented DMARC to stop spoofing. This is because of a lack of awareness of secure protocols and living in a state of constant denial, assuming that your domain is safe no matter what. That is until you fall prey to the next major email scam attack and lose a huge chunk of your subscribers and customers.

Another popular misconception is that DMARC is difficult to implement. Implementing DMARC for your domain, in reality, requires you to simply publish a DMARC record in your DNS with a one-line syntax. The difficult part is managing and monitoring your domains, especially if you have quite a few of them like every other business does. However, that too is manageable now! You can initiate your DMARC journey with our DMARC Analyzer, which is engineered to simplify your DMARC adoption process. We help you:

  • Generate and publish your DMARC records
  • Register your domains easily
  • Shift to an enforced policy within the least time
  • Gain 100% DMARC compliance on the total volume of emails sent from your domain

What’s in it for Your Business?

Powered by DMARC, it means that your organization will be better protected from phishing and spoofing. DMARC prevents phishers from using your domain to spoof legitimate emails and trick your customers into handing over their usernames and passwords, credit card information, and other sensitive information. 90% of the organizations using DMARC have claimed to witness a boost in their email deliverability rate within a very short period of having implemented the protocol.

But that’s not all. While some emails you send to your followers may be determined as spam by their email providers, DMARC is a security feature that helps prevent this from happening. In addition to preventing the spoofing of your domain, DMARC allows you to ensure that your legitimate marketing emails have a higher chance of landing in your recipients’ inboxes. If not for the altruistic reasons of ensuring email delivery, implementing DMARC will definitely result in a better ROI on your email marketing campaigns, and improve your domain reputation.

Read Your DMARC Reports Easily with PowerDMARC

When you configure DMARC at your organization, you have the option of specifying to your receivers’ ESPs, to send you DMARC reports. These reports are crucial to monitor your email flow, gain visibility on failed deliveries and the status of each email’s authentication results.

But the raw reports are sent as XML files that are tough to read and understand. Our DMARC Report Analyzer is engineered to extract DMARC reports from your ESPs and assemble them across a single pane of glass. We parse the data for you, organize and manage them, and present them in a human-readable format that anyone can understand. We also allow you to download the data in a comprehensive PDF format to share with your employees.

Our interactive dashboard provides information on a higher level that can be read at a glance, as well as granular details on your sending sources so you can track malicious IP addresses faster.

Get your DMARC record checker today to analyze and improve loopholes in your domain’s security!

Before we get to “how to setup DMARC?” we should take a step back and understand the concept of DMARC and how it has emerged as the most trending solution in the world of information and email security in the past few years. Organizations can be considered as huge email exchanging bodies with major influx in email flow across their client-base, and among  their business partners and employees.

However, while running your email marketing campaigns, it is difficult to monitor whether all the emails being sent from your domain are legitimate. Every 14 seconds, an organizational domain is spoofed by an attacker to send out phishing emails to receivers who trust them. This is why email authentication is a mandatory addition to your security.

Why is DMARC Needed in the Current Situation?

The FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center of 2020 (FBI IC3 Report 2020) reported that 28,500 complaints were received in the US pertaining to email-based attacks. The FBI investigated e-mail scam attacks describing the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), which strived to provide assistance to small businesses during the pandemic. These attacks specifically targeted unemployment insurance, Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans, and Small Business Economic Injury Disaster Loans.

Did You Know?

  • 75% of organizational domains from all around the world were spoofed in 2020 to send phishing emails to victims
  • 74% of those phishing campaigns were successful
  • The frequency of BEC has increased by 15% since last year
  • IBM reported that one in every 5 companies in the last year has experienced data breaches caused by malicious emails

Check your domain right now to see how protected you are against email fraud!

How to Setup DMARC Manually?

In order to learn how to setup DMARC, you need to start by creating a DMARC record. As complicated as it may sound, the process is comparatively much simpler! DMARC is a DNS TXT (text) record that can be published in your DNS to configure the protocol for your domain.

DMARC record example:

v=DMARC1; p=reject; adkim=s; aspf=s; rua=mailto:[email protected]; ruf=mailto:[email protected]; pct=100; fo=0;

Note: While beginning your email authentication journey, you can keep your DMARC policy (p) at none instead of reject, to monitor your email flow and resolve issues before shifting to a strict policy.

Learn how to publish DMARC record

How to Setup DMARC Easily with PowerDMARC

With PowerDMARC, you don’t need to understand the mechanisms in depth to manually create your DMARC record, as we do it automatically on our platform. All you need to do is use our free DMARC record generator tool and fill in your desired criteria. Click on Generate Record and instantly create an error-free DMARC record to publish in your DNS:

After creating your record, simply open your DNS management console, navigate to your desired domain and paste the TXT record. Save changes to the process and you are done!

How to Leverage DMARC to Prevent Domain Spoofing

Note that if you are configuring DMARC to stop your domain from being Spoofed and keep phishing and BEC attacks at bay, we recommend you the select the following criterion while generating your DMARC record with our DMARC record generator tool:

Set your DMARC policy to p=reject

When you are opting for DMARC enforcement at your organization by choosing a reject policy, this means that whenever an email sent from your domain fails DMARC authentication checks and fails DMARC, the malicious email would be instantly rejected by the receiving MTA, instead of being delivered to your receiver’s inbox.

Another factor that you would want to consider is gaining visibility on your email flow and monitoring emails passing and failing authentication. DMARC reporting ensures that you never miss a malicious activity on your domain and you stay informed at all times. To enjoy the benefits of email authentication, and setup DMARC in a way that would effectively protect your domain, sign up with DMARC analyzer today!

One of the largest focuses for email security in the last year has been around DMARC and ransomware has emerged as one of the most financially damaging cybercrimes of this year. Now what is DMARC? Domain-Based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance as an email authentication protocol is used by domain owners of organizations big and small, to protect their domain from Business Email Compromise (BEC), direct domain spoofing, phishing attacks and other forms of email fraud.

DMARC helps you enjoy multiple benefits over time like a considerable boost in your email deliverability, and domain reputation. However a lesser known fact is that DMARC also serves as the first line of defense against Ransomware. Let’s enunciate how DMARC can protect against Ransomware and how ransomware can affect you.

What is Ransomware?

Ransomware is a type of malicious software (malware) that is installed on a computer, usually through the use of malware. The goal of the malicious code is to encrypt files on the computer, after which it typically demands payment in order to decrypt them.

Once the malware installation is in place, the criminal demands a ransom be paid by the victim to restore access to the data. It allows cybercriminals to encrypt sensitive data on computer systems, effectively protecting it from access. The cybercriminals then demand the victim pay a ransom sum to remove the encryption and restore access. Victims are typically faced with a message that tells them their documents, photos, and music files have been encrypted and to pay a ransom to allegedly “restore” the data. Typically, they ask the users to pay in Bitcoin and inform them how long they have to pay to avoid losing everything.

How Does Ransomware Work?

Ransomware has shown that poor security measures put companies at great risk. One of the most effective delivery mechanisms for ransomware is email phishing. Ransomware is often distributed through phishing. A common way this occurs is when an individual receives a malicious email that persuades them to open an attachment containing a file they should trust, like an invoice, that instead contains malware and begins the infection process.

The email will claim to be something official from a well-known company and contains an attachment pretending to be legitimate software, which is why it is very likely that unsuspecting customers, partners, or employees who are aware of your services would fall prey to them.

Security researchers have concluded that for an organization to become a target of phishing attacks with malicious links to malware downloads, the choice is ” opportunistic.” A lot of ransomware doesn’t have any external guidance as to who to target, and often the only thing guiding it is pure opportunity. This means, any organization whether it is a small business or a large enterprise, can be the next target if they have loopholes in their email security.

2021 recent security trends report have made the following distressing discoveries:

  • Since 2018, there has been a 350% rise in ransomware attacks making it one of the most popular attack vectors in recent time.
  • Cyber security experts believe there will be more ransomware attacks than ever in 2021.
  • More than 60% of all ransomware attacks in 2020 involved social actions, such as phishing.
  • New ransomware variants have increased by 46% in the last 2 years
  • 68,000 new ransomware Trojans for mobile have been detected
  • Security researchers have estimated that every 14 seconds a business falls victim to a ransomware attack

Does DMARC Protect Against Ransomware? DMARC and Ransomware

DMARC is the first line of defense against ransomware attacks. Since ransomware is usually delivered to victims in the form of malicious phishing emails from spoofed or forged company domains, DMARC helps protect your brand from being impersonated, which means such fake emails will be marked as spam or not get delivered when you have the protocol correctly configured.  DMARC and Ransomware: how does DMARC help?

  • DMARC authenticates your emails against SPF and DKIM authentication standards that helps filter malicious IP addresses, forgery and domain impersonation.
  • When a phishing email curated by an attacker with a malicious link to install ransomware arising from your domain name reaches a client/employee server, if you have
  • DMARC implemented the email is authenticated against SPF and DKIM.
  • The receiving server tries to verify the sending source and DKIM signature
  • The malicious email will fail verification checks and ultimately fail DMARC authentication due to domain misalignment
  • Now, if you have implemented DMARC at an enforced policy mode (p=reject/quarantine) the email after failing DMARC will either get marked as spam, or rejected, nullifying the chances of your receivers falling prey to the ransomware attack
  • Finally, evade additional SPF errors like too many DNS lookups, syntactical errors and implementation errors, to prevent your email authentication protocol from being invalidated
  • This ultimately safeguards your brand’s reputation, sensitive information and monetary assets

The first step to gaining protection against ransomware attacks is to sign up for DMARC analyzer today! We help you implement DMARC and shift to DMARC enforcement easily and in the least possible time. Start your email authentication journey today with DMARC.

Learn how to Publish a DMARC record

Before we proceed towards publishing a DMARC record, it is important to understand what is a DMARC record? A DMARC record is nothing but a DNS TXT record that can be published in your domain’s DNS (Domain Naming System) so as to configure Domain-Based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance or DMARC for your domain. By configuring DMARC for your domain you as the domain owner now have the ability to specify to receiving servers how they should respond to emails that are sent from unauthorized or illegitimate sources.

Instructions for Generating Your DMARC Record

The process for generating your DMARC DNS Record is extremely simple if you use our free DMARC record generator tool for this purpose. All you need to do is fill up the following criteria:

  • Choose your DMARC policy mode(if you are just starting out with email authentication, we recommend a policy of p=none for you to begin with so you can monitor your email flow)
  • Choose the DMARC policy mode for your subdomains ( we recommend you to only activate this criteria if you wish to opt for a different policy for your subdomains, else, by default it takes up the same policy as your main domain)
  • Type in your desired email addresses wherein you want your DMARC RUA (aggregate) and RUF (Forensic) reports to be delivered to
  • Choose your DKIM alignment mode (for strict alignment the DKIM signature in the email header has to match exactly with the domain found in the from header. For relaxed alignment the two domains must share the same organizational domain only)
  • Choose your SPF alignment mode (for strict alignment the domain in the Return-path header has to match exactly with the domain found in the from header. For relaxed alignment the two domains must share the same organizational domain only)
  • Choose your forensic options (this represents under which circumstances you want to receive your forensic reports)

A typical error-free DMARC record looks something like this:

v=DMARC1; p=none; sp=none; rua=mailto:[email protected]; ruf=mailto:[email protected]; fo=1;

The generated record is now to be published in your domain’s DNS on the subdomain: _dmarc.YOURDOMAIN.com

How to Publish Your DMARC Record? 

In order to publish your generated DMARC record, you will need to log in to your DNS console and navigate to the specific domain for which you want to configure DMARC.

After navigating to the domain in your DNS management console, you will need to specify the hostname and the resource type. Since DMARC exists in your domain as a DNS TXT record, the resource type for it is TXT, and the hostname to be specified in this case is : _dmarc 

Finally, you need to add the value of your DMARC record (the record you generated previously): v=DMARC1; p=none; sp=none; rua=mailto:[email protected]; ruf=mailto:[email protected]; fo=1;

Save changes to the whole process and you have successfully configured DMARC for your domain!

What Should be My Next Steps?

After you are done publishing your DMARC record your next step should be to focus on protecting your domain from scammers and impersonators. That is your main agenda anyway when you are implementing security protocols and email authentication services. Simply publishing a DMARC record with a p=none policy doesn’t offer any protection against domain spoofing attacks and email fraud. For that you need to shift to DMARC enforcement.

What is DMARC Enforcement?

You can achieve DMARC enforcement if you implement a DMARC policy mode of p=reject or p=quarantine. For maximum protection from domain spoofing attacks and BEC, we recommend a policy mode of reject.  However, the process for achieving DMARC enforcement isn’t as simple as changing your policy mode from monitoring to enforcement. To gain immunity from impersonation attacks all while making sure that your email deliverability doesn’t get impacted, what you need to do is:

  • Sign up with PowerDMARC and enable DMARC reporting for your domain
  • Get daily DMARC RUA reports on email authentication results available in an array of viewing options for ease of understanding
  • Get forensic report updates on the dashboard whenever emails fail authentication
  • Stay under the SPF hard limit to ensure your SPF record never gets invalidated

With DMARC aggregate and forensic reports, moving from monitoring to enforcement becomes a cakewalk for domain owners, as you can visually monitor your email flow and track and respond to deliverability issues instantaneously from the PowerDMARC platform. Sign up today for your free DMARC analyzer trial!

DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication Reporting and Conformance) is an email authentication standard that provides domain owners with a way for generating reports about emails sent from one domain to another. DMARC provides reporting capability, in the form of DMARC reports, which lets receiving email servers provide back data to the sending domain about incoming emails, such as the volume of both legitimate and fraudulent messages. This helps domain owners respond to email deliverability issues and domain spoofing incidents at a faster pace.

DMARC reports are of two primary types:

In this blog we would be breaking down each of these DMARC reports and explaining what kind of information they provide us.

How Do DMARC Aggregate Reports Help You?

DMARC aggregate (RUA) reports help you keep track of the delivery status of all emails received from your domain. They’re sent in XML format daily and offer several points of information regarding the status of emails sent from your domain. DMARC aggregate reports are sent to your designated email address, providing a useful general analysis of emails sent from your domain. They come in handy when you want to see how well your emails are performing in terms of deliverability and which IP address(es) are failing DMARC authentication. From these Reports, you can easily view:

  • All the sending sources, sending emails from your domain
  • The IP addresses behind these sending sources
  • The geolocations of these sources
  • The reporting organization’s name, contact information, and email address
  • The DMARC policy configured for your domain
  • The SPF and DKIM verification results

DMARC aggregate reports help you track policy in effect, and avoid any inbox disruptions that could adversely affect your subscribers, pulling all of your email activity together with a snapshot of emails failing authentication on your receiver’s side. It helps you track DMARC breaks and understand where you need to improve. Aggregate report data can be used to find out who has been spoofing your domain. You will be able to see which sending source is spoofing and the IP address behind it is trying to impersonate your domain over and over again and you can take action against these entities.

How Do DMARC Forensic Reports Help You?

A DMARC forensic report of any incident is an in-depth look at the details that led up to a phishing or spoofing attack, including all email exchanges and headers. DMARC uses the term “pass” to describe an email that has been received as normal. If your company sends emails and they are not considered “passes” according to the DMARC policy, your server will generate a forensic report. Analysis of a DMARC failure report can provide forensic insights into the deliverability of a message and how it is perceived in an email server’s spam/junk folder.

Although in comparison to DMARC Aggregate Reports, forensic reports are not as widely implemented by mailbox providers, however, they can prove to be a useful way to get detailed information about how and why emails fail DMARC. They can also help with troubleshooting various senders’ email delivery issues providing domain owners with the most granular analysis, detailing precisely how many emails were stopped before they reached the inbox, and why.

How are PowerDMARC’s RUA and RUF Reporting Mechanisms Different?

PowerDMARC makes DMARC reporting easier for you. Aggregate reports are generated in XML format that can be quite difficult to read. We simplify them for you, by converting them into charts and tables for ease of understanding. Furthermore, DMARC reports on the PowerDMARC platform are available in 7 different viewing formats that help you sort out reports by sending sources, organizations, hostnames, geolocations and much more!

As explained above, DMARC forensic reports can be extremely detailed and may contain email content. This is why we help you encrypt them with a private key that only you have access to.

Sign up with PowerDMARC today to configure your DMARC analyzer and take advantage of the various benefits of DMARC reports, starting today! Understand your DMARC reports easily.

Is DMARC Required?

If you run an organization that makes use of a substantial amount of email flow on a daily basis, chances are you have already come across the term “DMARC”. So what is DMARC? Domain-Based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance is your email checkpoint on your receiver’s side that helps you authenticate your outbound emails as well as respond to situations where these emails have questionable legitimacy. DMARC offers several advantages and it is especially useful in today’s world where remote-working environments are being adopted and electronic communication has become the most commonly used method of interaction for businesses. Let’s list down the 5 important reasons why is DMARC required in the context of today:

1) DMARC Helps Mitigate Impersonation Attacks

Ever since the news of the COVID-19 vaccine broke out worldwide in February 2021, cyber attackers took advantage of the situation to create forged emails using authentic company domains, offering vaccine lures to employees and customers. Several users, especially aged citizens fell victim to the lures and ended up losing money. This explains why is DMARC required now more than ever.

A new form of BEC (Business Email Compromise) has recently taken the internet by storm, exploiting loopholes in Microsoft 365’s read receipts and manipulating authentication protocols to evade spam filters and security gateways. Sophisticated social engineering attacks like these can easily bypass robust security measures and trick unsuspecting customers into submitting their credentials.

DMARC minimizes the chances of BEC and domain spoofing attacks and helps secure your emails from fraud and impersonation. This is because DMARC works differently than your ordinary integrated security gateways that come with your cloud-based email exchange services, offering a way for domain owners to decide how they want receiving servers to respond to emails failing SPF/DKIM email authentication protocols.

2) DMARC Improves Email Deliverability

When your email domain gets spoofed, your receivers who have been interacting with your brand  for years are the last people to be suspicious of fraudulent activities from your side. Hence, they readily open the spoofed emails and fall prey to these attacks. However, the next time they receive an email from you, even if the message is authentic and from an authorized source they would be reluctant to open your email. This will drastically impact your email deliverability, as well as your company’s email marketing strategies and agendas.

However, DMARC can improve email deliverability by almost 10% over time! DMARC is required for you to remain in complete control of your domain by choosing which messages get delivered to your recipients’ inboxes. This keeps illegitimate emails at bay and makes sure legitimate emails always get delivered without delay.

3) DMARC Aggregate Reports Help You Gain Visibility

DMARC Aggregate reports can help you view your authentication results and mitigate errors in email delivery at a faster pace. It helps you gain insight on sending sources and IP addresses that are sending emails on behalf of your domain and failing authentication. This helps you track down malicious IP addresses as well, explaining why is DMARC required.

PowerDMARC’s DMARC aggregate reports are available in 7 distinctive views on the platform that helps you gain an unfiltered perspective on your email sending sources and hostnames, like never before! Additionally, we provide you with the option to instantly convert your DMARC reports into PDF documents that you can share with your whole team, as well as create a schedule for them to be emailed to you at regular intervals.

4) DMARC Forensic Reports Help You Respond to Forensic Incidents

DMARC forensic reports are generated whenever a forensic incident is triggered, such as when the outbound email fails SPF or DKIM authentication. Such an incident may be triggered in case of domain spoofing attacks when an email domain is forged by an impersonator using a malicious IP address to send a fraudulent message to an unsuspecting receiver that appears to be coming from an authentic source they know and can trust. Forensic reports provide in-detail analysis of malicious sources that may have attempted to spoof you, so that you can take action against them and prevent future incidents.

Note that forensic reports are highly detailed and may contain your mail body. However, you can avoid disclosing your email contents while viewing your DMARC forensic reports by encrypting your reports with a private key that only you have access to, with PowerDMARC.

5) DMARC Helps Improve Your Domain Reputation

A good domain reputation is like a feather in your cap, as the domain owner. A good domain reputation indicates to receiving email servers that your emails are legitimate and from reliable sources and hence are less likely to be marked as spam or land up in the junk folder. DMARC helps you improve your domain reputation by validating your message sources and indicates that your domain has extended support towards secure protocols by implementing standard email authentication practices like SPF and DKIM.

With this, it is evident why is DMARC required, and can prove to be beneficial for your business! So the next step is :

How to Configure DMARC for Your Domain?

PowerDMARC’s DMARC Analyzer can help you implement DMARC in 4 easy steps:

  • Publish your SPF, DKIM and DMARC record in your domain’s DNS
  • Sign up with PowerDMARC to gain access to your DMARC aggregate and forensic reports and monitor your email flow
  • Shift from a policy of monitoring to DMARC enforcement, to gain maximum protection against BEC and spoofing
  • Stay under the SPF 10 lookup limit with PowerSPF

Sign up today for your free DMARC Analyzer and avail of the multiple benefits of DMARC today!