As of 1st February 2024, a pivotal shift in email protocol is set to take place, particularly affecting Google and Yahoo users.
This update, aiming to mitigate spam and bolster security, mandates the implementation of DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance) authentication for all emails directed towards their users.
Failure to comply with this DMARC requirement may lead to a significant decrease in email deliverability rates to your subscribers.
The primary purpose behind these new requirements for bulk email senders is to reshape and refine the inbox experience for users.
Despite the increasing adoption of DKIM (DomainKeys Identified Mail) and SPF (Sender Policy Framework) authentication since Gmail initiated authentication prerequisites in 2022, DMARC adoption has progressed at a slower pace. Recent data indicates that only approximately 40% of senders have integrated this protocol into their systems.
DMARC authentication operates as a protective shield against spoofing and phishing attacks by validating the legitimacy of the sender's domain.
Configured within your DNS provider, DMARC reports enable vigilant monitoring of email messages sent using your domain.
In light of the upcoming changes, DMARC is poised to become a necessity for bulk senders, complementing the existing DKIM and SPF protocols.
One of the critical functions of DMARC is to safeguard your domain or organisation against spoofing attempts by spammers. It gives receiving mail servers instructions on how to handle messages that fail authentication checks or do not meet the specified authentication criteria in your DMARC policy record.
DMARC operates in tandem with SPF and DKIM, reinforcing email authentication:
Sender Policy Framework (SPF): Authorises specific IP addresses permitted to send emails for the domain, enabling receiving servers to verify the legitimacy of messages originating from the authorised servers.
Domain Keys Identified Mail (DKIM): Appends a digital signature to outgoing messages, allowing receiving servers to authenticate the message's origin and integrity, confirming that it hasn't been tampered with en route.
Neglecting these recommendations will likely result in deliverability issues, leading emails destined for Gmail & Yahoo addresses to land in subscribers' spam folders.
To ensure compliance with these updated protocols, Google have outlined a useful guide here.
Additionally, establishing a dedicated sending domain is recommended to exercise greater control over your sender reputation. Aligning this domain with the root domain is crucial for compliance.
Apart from the mandatory DMARC implementation, these updates signify a shift towards a consent-centric approach.
Further updates that we can expect to become more prominent is 2024 is the facilitation of easy unsubscribes and ensuring that you have valid forward and reverse DNS records for your sending domain and IP.
Additionally, adhering to the Internet Messaging Format standard for email formatting and embracing stricter user consent and data management practices will be crucial moving forward.
If you have any queries or require guidance regarding these new requirements, our team is here to support you throughout the process. Feel free to reach out to us.