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THE DMA LAUDS NEW HOTMAIL PROTECTIONS
New York, NY, June 22, 2005 -In recent months, the DMA has emphasized to its members the importance of complying with emerging standards for the authentication of e-mail messages. The DMA has learned that, beginning this week, Microsoft will notify its Hotmail customers when the Sender ID protocol is unable to verify the authenticity of an e-mail message. Messages that have not been authenticated will most likely be placed into a customer's junk folder or deleted altogether in conjunction with other spam filters.
"Compliance with authentication programs is a necessary step to protect both corporate brands and consumer confidence," said Jerry Cerasale, senior vice president, government relations for The Direct Marketing Association. "We congratulate Microsoft for taking this important step in safeguarding the online marketplace and encourage all of our member companies to adopt an authentication program as quickly as possible."
Authentication is the verification that a computer server/IP address or a specified sender is authorized to send e-mail that purports to be from that sender and/or domain name. Most ISPs and e-mail providers are adopting authentication programs to better protect their users from spam and phishing and reduce false positives for legitimate e-mail marketers.
For example, the Sender ID program being used by Microsoft will check the IP address of incoming e-mails against an Internet registry called the Domain Name System (DNS) to verify that the computer server/IP address that actually sent the message is the same IP address that is listed as authorized to do so in the DNS record for that domain.
There are several easy-to-adopt, low-cost, and interoperable authentication standards that have emerged in recent months, including the Sender ID Framework and Sender Policy Framework, as well as DomainKeys and Identified Internet Mail (with the latter to expected to merge in the coming months). These help legitimate marketers by protecting the unauthorized use of brands online and help consumers by cutting down on spam, phishing and other types of online fraud.
Craig Spiezle, director, Technology, Care & Safety, at Microsoft, noted at a industry event in early April that while numbers are quickly growing, only about 12 percent of domains worldwide have published SPF records, representing about 25 percent of total e-mail volume flowing into Hotmail on any given day.
To help spread the word about authentication, The DMA and Microsoft, along with other partners, are sponsoring the upcoming email authentication implementation summit on July 12 in New York, NY. For more information visit www.emailauthentication.org/summit2005.