In celebration of DMARC’s 4th birthday on Tuesday, Return Path has revealed that global adoption of the authentication protocol has grown 24% over the past year.
Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance (DMARC) is an email authentication tool that helps prevent email-based phishing and spoofing attacks. Spoofing is a typical tactic of spam and phishing hackers, who send messages from fake email addresses.
DMARC is also becoming an increasingly critical component of email marketing, as marketers who implement DMARC in their email authentication process see higher deliverability rates because their messages are considered safe and reliable due in part to the DMARC systems in place by providers to detect spoofing.
According to data platform and email marketing company Return Path, global adoption of DMARC has increased over the past year but still does not represent the majority of companies. 29% of the 1,000 global brands Return Path surveyed have now adopted DMARC — a rise from 22% in 2015.
North America leads the way in global adoption according to the report, with 42% of brands reporting they have now adopted DMARC authentication systems.
This is likely due to the strong stances that Silicon Valley technology giants have taken in support of DMARC. Gmail, the largest email provider in the world with over a billion active users, will reject any email message that doesn’t pass DMARC authentication checks by June 2016. Yahoo, Hotmail, and AOL have all implemented DMARC authentication systems to a certain degree as well.
Banking, retail and healthcare companies lag behind on DMARC adoption, according to Return Path, even though they are among the most heavily phished industries.
A notable recent case includes the cyberattack recently launched against Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center, which was first reported by an NBC affiliate. Hospital employees have been unable to access email or patient records, but there is no evidence implying the hackers have been able to access or decrypt patient files.
The ransomware used in the Hospital hack is often spread through phishing campaigns and malicious downloads, per ZDNet.