New Email Authentication Requirements for Gmail & Yahoo Could Affect Your Business

Gmail and Yahoo are taking steps to combat spam and phishing by requiring email authentication for all senders. Learn what you need to know and how to stay compliant.

Imagine this: You open your inbox, ready to tackle your day’s tasks, only to be greeted by a flood of unsolicited and fraudulent emails. Sound familiar? We’ve all been there, frustrated by the clutter and potential risks lurking in our inboxes.

It seems like Gmail and Yahoo have heard our collective sighs of exasperation. They’re taking steps to combat this issue and ensure a safer and more streamlined email experience. If you or your company sends emails to Gmail and Yahoo users, staying ahead of the game and meeting the upcoming requirements is crucial.

Timeline

Google has set a deadline of February 2024 for the implementation of email authentication for sending messages to Gmail accounts. For bulk senders who send more than 5,000 emails per day to Gmail accounts, additional email authentication requirements must be met.

Yahoo is also rolling out similar requirements and plans to have strong email authentication in place by early 2024.

What You Need to Know

Several key factors must be considered to meet the new email authentication requirements, with some only applicable to specific senders.

Applicable to all senders:

Email Authentication: This helps prevent threat actors from sending emails pretending to be from your organization. It protects against domain spoofing and malicious cyber-attacks.

  • SPF (Sender Policy Framework) is an email authentication protocol that prevents email spoofing (spam) and verifies if incoming emails come from an authorized IP address.
  • DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM) allows organizations to take responsibility for transmitting a message by signing it so mailbox providers can verify it.

Low SPAM rates: If recipients report your messages as SPAM at a rate exceeding the new requirement of 0.3%, your messages could be blocked or sent to SPAM.

Requirements for senders of more than 5,000 messages per day:

SPF and DKIM: Companies sending emails to Gmail or Yahoo must have SPF and DKIM authentication methods implemented.

Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance (DMARC) is an email authentication standard that provides domain-level protection. It detects and prevents email spoofing techniques in phishing and other email-based attacks. Companies must have a DMARC policy in place.

DMARC alignment: Messages must pass DMARC alignment, meaning that the sending domain matches the header domain.

One-click unsubscribe: For subscribed messages, there must be a visible unsubscribe link in the message body that can be initiated with a single click.

The Impact of Non-Compliance

Failure to meet these email authentication requirements can significantly impact the deliverability of your messages to Gmail and Yahoo accounts. If you send over 5,000 emails daily and fail to implement SPF, DKIM, or have a DMARC policy, your business could be affected even more.

Act Now!

To ensure your messages reach their destination and minimize the impact of these changes on your business, it’s crucial to prepare and meet the new email authentication requirements. Here’s what you can do:

  1. Assess your current status: Use tools and resources to evaluate your email authentication status.
  2. Implement email authentication: Set up SPF and DKIM authentication methods to prevent email spoofing and verify your organization’s messages.
  3. Establish a DMARC policy: Implement DMARC to provide domain-level protection and prevent email-based attacks.
  4. Ensure DMARC alignment: Make sure your messages pass DMARC alignment by matching the sending domain with the header domain.
  5. Include one-click unsubscribe: For subscribed messages, include a visible unsubscribe link that can be initiated with a single click.

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