Tech Tips

Changing Email Security Requirements for Gmail, Yahoo, and Apple Mail Recipients
Published on
March 21, 2024

Google, Yahoo, and Apple are now requiring that email sent to their domains have SPF, DKIM, and DMARC implemented. You may be asking yourself what those acronyms stand for, and we’re here to break it down for you.

Sender Policy Framework (SPF)

Sender Policy Framework (SPF) hardens your DNS servers and restricts who can send email from your domain.  In a nutshell, this keeps other bad actors from spoofing your mail domain and sending email “as you.”Imagine you're throwing a party and you want to make sure only your invited guests can enter. SPF is like having a bouncer at the door who checks the guest list to ensure that only approved guests are allowed in.

DomainKeys Identification Mail (DKIM)

DomainKeys Identification Mail (DKIM) ensures that the contents of your email messages remain trusted and haven’t been tampered with or compromised.Imagine you're sending a letter to someone, but instead of just putting your name on the envelope, you also add a special seal that only you can create. This seal proves that the letter really came from you and hasn't been tampered with along the way. DKIM is like that special seal for emails.

Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance (DMARC)

Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance (DMARC) ties SPF and DKIM together with a consistent set of policies around enforcement.Imagine you're a manager of a team, and you want to make sure everyone follows the rules and communicates effectively. DMARC is the managerial playbook for email security, helping you ensure that emails sent on behalf of your domain are genuine and safe. It also provides feedback to improve the overall security of your email communications.

What Happens Without SPF, DKIM, and DMARC Implemented?

Let’s explore that happens if you don’t have SPF (Sender Policy Framework), DKIM (DomainKeys Identified Mail), and DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance) implemented. Without proper configuration of your email settings, if your email recipients are using Gmail, Yahoo, or Apple email addresses, then it’s possible that your emails are now getting blocked and that they aren’t receiving them. A serious issue if these email recipients are your customers or prospective customers.

If you want to properly configure SPF, DKIM, and DMARC for your own mail domain, it’ll require making changes to your public DNS and MX records as well as to the configuration of your email system.

Have questions or would like to discuss the best way to secure your email domain using SPF, DKIM, and DMARC? Our security team can help!

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