Substantial changes were rolled out at the end of April which dramatically affect traditional email handling on the internet. A technical specification known as DMARC has just been implemented by Yahoo and AOL, with Gmail and others to follow. These changes directly affect you and your website, but don’t worry, we’ll tell you what those effects are and what we are doing about it.
What is DMARC?
DMARC stands for Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance. DMARC allows domain owners to publish policy statements in DNS telling receiver domains what to do with messages that do not authenticate. In other words, DMARC is intended to help reduce the potential for email abuse by standardizing how email receivers perform email authentication.
So What’s the Big Deal?
Yahoo recently decided to change its authentication policy to disallow any emails that weren’t explicitly sent from their services or webmail interface. This means that any email not sent directly from a Yahoo user or service will be unconditionally denied across the web.
For example, if you send marketing campaign emails to your clients via a service like Mailchimp or Constant Contact, and your “From” address is a personal address at yahoo.com, most likely your emails will bounce (not be delivered).
Why is this Happening?
In an attempt to stop fraudulent emails, Yahoo changed its DMARC authentication policy to reject emails that claim to come from yahoo.com but actually originate at non-Yahoo servers.
With this change, using a yahoo.com “From” address when sending through an email service provider like MailChimp will make the email look fraudulent, even if it’s not. And that could result in emails being rejected by the receiving server, or sent to spam. Even though Yahoo made this change internally on its side, it will affect receiving servers who respect DMARC policies, including Gmail, Hotmail, and many others.
What is Advice Media Doing About It?
In the case of your website, we have created forms which your clients use to contact you, request an appointment, or ask a question. These forms are configured to send email notifications to your practice every time there is a new form submission. Previously, we used the email address provided by the individual submitting the form as the “From” address, so that when you received the email notification, it appeared as if it were sent from the person who submitted the form. This was intended to help you identify the contact as a client and continue the conversation with that individual via email. However, after these DMARC changes, this method of sending the email notifications will no longer provide reliable delivery of these notifications. So, Advice Media has modified the configuration so that all future form submission email notifications will be sent “From” [email protected]. The “From Name” will still appear as the first and last name of the user who initially submitted the form, but the “From Email Address” will be replaced with the email address above. Additionally, we will set the “Reply To” email address as the users email address so that you will be able to click the Reply button and effectively reply to the actual user, even though the “From” address doesn’t display their email.
Configuring the forms in this way will allow us to be 100% DMARC compliant and provide you with reliable and actionable form submission notifications. We are proud to be on the leading edge of this wide sweeping technology change and are proud to be able to provide you a timely and efficient solution!