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What is a Spam email sent from your email address?

If your email address is forged by an attacker to send fake emails in bulk to your receivers, these emails may be marked as spam emails on the receiver’s side. This can be due to a typical case of email spoofing where an attacker sends an email from your own domain. 

Emails are often flagged and marked as spam when the receiving server fails to affirm the authority of the sender. When an attacker forges your email address, the Return-path address remains unmatched, and so does the DKIM signature. This leads to authentication failures, causing your emails to be marked as spam.

Why are my emails going into recipients’ spam folders: different test case scenarios

1. You are using wrongly configured email authentication records

If your DNS records for SPF, DKIM, or DMARC are improperly configured, even your legitimate emails can fail authentication and get marked as spam emails. Line breaks, unwanted spaces, or even a missing semicolon can lead to syntax errors which can invalidate your DNS record. 

Exercise caution during implementation and try using online tools to help you in the process instead of relying on guesswork.

2. Your DKIM selector is too long

While using 2048 bit DKIM keys is the recommended practice for enhanced security, not all third-parties support it. This can result in spam emails. You can use 1024 bit keys instead, or verify with your service provider before implementing the protocol.

3. You have not included third parties in your SPF record

If you are an online business using multiple third-party vendors for your email transactions, you need to confirm their authority over your domains by including them in your domain’s SPF record. 

For example, if you use Zoho Mail as a third-party vendor, you need to add the following include mechanism to your record for SPF: 

include:spf.zoho.eu

On the PowerDMARC SPF record generator tool, you can add your third-party vendor in the “Authorize domains or 3rd party services that send emails on behalf of this domain” section, while generating your record. To add multiple vendors, simply separate each domain with a single space in the following way:

 

If your record for SPF is exceeding the lookup limit after including all vendors, flatten it with our auto SPF flattening tool.

4. You’re using bots to send bulk emails to customers for business or marketing purposes

This isn’t a case where spam emails are being sent from your own domain. If you’re into commercial email marketing, you may be configuring botnets to send emails in bulk to potential customers. While this is an inexpensive way to gain exposure, more often than not these emails land in the spam box.

How can spam emails sent from your own domain affect your domain’s health?

If your emails are consistently getting marked as spam, it is a problem. Too many spam emails arising from a domain can drastically affect the reputation and credibility of the said domain. Email receivers can block or blacklist your domain to stop incoming emails from you, suspecting malicious intentions. This can in time lead to even legitimate emails getting rejected.

To fix this issue:

  • Make sure all your DNS records are valid. Check your records using this SPF record lookup tool. 
  • Update your records in case you add to your third parties 
  • Enhance your knowledge regarding email authentication protocols 
  • Shift to a DMARC reject policy to stop spoofing
  • Enable reporting for DMARC with a DMARC report analyzer. This will help you track your authentication results and detect problems in your email setup

An error-free DMARC setup can help you reduce email spam. Get your free trial today! 

A very common question asked by domain owners is “why are my emails going to junk folder instead of the recipients’ inboxes?”. Now it is important to note that the underlying reason behind emails going to the junk folder is never unidirectional, but can be due to various reasons starting from simple inducements like a poorly written email to more complex causes like in case your domain name has been previously used for spam. In either of the cases, your emails landing in the spam folder drastically affects your email deliverability rate and domain reputation. 

If you want to quickly resolve this obstacle all while ensuring that your emails always reach their designated destinations in future, you have come to the right place. Without beating around the bush much, let’s get right into the solution for stopping your emails from getting flagged as spam: opt for email authentication solutions from a reliable service provider today!

How Does Email Authentication Improve Email Deliverability?

Remember that it is all about boosting your domain’s reputation and ensuring that your domain is not used to carry out malicious activities like spoofing or phishing attacks and BEC. This is exactly what an email authentication protocol like DMARC does. Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance (DMARC) is an industry-recommended email authentication standard that makes use of SPF and DKIM to authenticate email messages sent from your domain. DMARC exists in your domain’s DNS as a DNS TXT record specifying to receiving servers how they should treat emails that fail authentication (probable spoofing/phishing emails sent by threat actors using your domain name).

However, it isn’t as easy and it appears to be. Simply publishing a DMARC record would not protect you against email fraud, rather it might worsen the situation in case you have incorrectly configured your authentication protocols. For implementing DMARC correctly you need to set up SPF and DKIM for your domain with the correct syntax and policy mode. Furthermore, only a DMARC policy level of enforcement (p=reject/quarantine) can adequately protect your domain against BEC and spoofing.

Keeping all of this in mind, eventually with DMARC you can observe a more than 10% increase in your email deliverability rate and a noticeable decrease in the number of emails landing in the spam folder.

How Can I Properly Configure DMARC to Stop Being Marked as Spam?

You can follow the steps given below to setup DMARC correctly for your domain:

  • Make a note of all authorized sending sources that can send emails on behalf of your domain.
  • Setup SPF for your domain completely free of cost, with PowerDMARC’s free SPF record generator.
  • Configure DKIM for your domain with PowerDMARC’s free DKIM record generator.
  • Configure DMARC for your domain with PowerDMARC’s free DMARC record generator.
  • Lookup and validate your records.
  • Monitor your authentication results and email flow with automatically generated and easy to comprehend DMARC aggregate and forensic reports using our DMARC analyzer tool, so that you can shift from a none policy to DMARC enforcement in no time!

You can find all the record generators in the PowerDMARC toolbox

Additional Recommendations on Stopping Emails Going to Junk Folder

Stay under the SPF hard limit

You may not be aware of this but SPF authentication comes with a DNS lookup limit of 10. Exceeding this limit invalidates your SPF record causing SPF to break and even legitimate emails to fail authentication checks. In such cases, an SPF permerror result is returned if you have enabled DMARC monitoring for your domain. Hence, staying under the SPF 10 DNS Lookup Limit is imperative to ensure your emails reach your recipients’ inboxes and prevent emails going to junk folder.

Report abusive IP addresses

Blacklisting abusive IP addresses that are using your domain name to conduct fraud can be an important step towards ensuring that similar incidents do not take place in the future. Our DMARC analyzer can help your report malicious addresses from all around the world, in real-time, to make sure they can no longer use your domain for fraudulent activities again!

Gain 100% DMARC compliance

Align emails sent via your domain against both SPF and DKIM authentication standards to gain 100% DMARC compliance. This would considerably improve your senders’ reputation over time and minimize the chances of your emails being flagged as spam, thereby minimizing the chances of your emails going to junk folder.

Sign up with PowerDMARC today to get your free DMARC and take the first step towards preventing your emails from going to the junk folder!