Google Tackles Spam with E-mail Authentication

By Cindy Waxer January 07, 2011

According to the Message Anti-Abuse Working Group, spam accounted for nearly 92 percent of e-mail messages sent in the first half of 2010. And Gartner reports that the number of victims who lost money due to phishing scams in 2008 was over five million U.S. consumers. The average loss was approximately $351 per consumer affected. And security company M86 reveals that nearly two percent of all mail is phishing related. That’s a heck of a lot of relatives of high-profile politicians asking you to help them transfer money in exchange for a cut of the profits.

However, Google hopes to put a stop to scamming by allowing Google Apps customers to sign their outgoing e-mail using a technology called DomainKeys Indentified Mail (DKIM). Essentially, DKIM is open-standard, e-mail authentication technology that demonstrates to users when incoming mail really is from a veritable source such as PayPal.

Reads a Google blog posting: “Today, we mark another notch in the spam-fighting belt: we’re making it possible for all Google Apps customers to sign their outgoing messages with DKIM, so their sent mail is less likely to get caught up in recipients’ spam filters. Google Apps is the first major e-mail platform – including on-premises providers – to offer simple DKIM signing at no extra cost. Once again, the power of the cloud has made it possible for us to bring this feature to millions of customers quickly and affordably.

‘We help the most-phished brands on the Internet manage their mail authentication programs, and the Google Apps solution is the simplest that we've encountered. Configuring DKIM for in-house systems requires plug-ins or additional gateway servers, making a company's mail environment more complex and difficult to manage. As a Google Apps customer, this feature took us only a few clicks in the control panel and an update of our DNS,’ said Kelly Wanser, CEO of eCert, an industry leader in providing critical protection against e-mail fraud."

Edited by Tammy Wolf

TechZone360 Contributing Editor

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