How to Prevent Email Spoofing

Security issues are the question of utmost concern for most business owners. You spend hours gathering information about your customers and you are ready to take all possible measures to protect them from scammers. One of the most popular tactics used by scammers is email spoofing. Although this term doesn’t sound scary, the results can be terrible. According to Statista, 532 brands were targeted by attacks in October 2020. To prevent this from happening with your company, you need to understand the meaning of the term email spoofing and know how to avoid being a phishing victim. Let’s take a deeper look at this question. The best way to prevent email spoofing is to apply email threat protection.

Email Spoofing: Definition

It’s a fabrication of an email header to make the recipient think that the email came from a person they know and can trust. Commonly, the sender forges the header of an email so that the recipient’s software demonstrates the fraudulent sender address, but most users usually take it at face value.

This form of identity deception is used in a variety of spam attacks and pursues only one goal - to boost the efficiency of malicious emails. These embedded links usually lead to dangerous phishing websites that were developed to steal the personal information of users. In some instances, such emails contain malware-laden attachments. To put it simply, fraudsters usually use this technique to impersonate others to complete their goals. No matter whether it’s your personal or business email, you can also be a victim of email spoofing.

Tips on How to Prevent Email Spoofing

Unfortunately, no one is impervious to email spoofing. However, you can take some measures to protect yourself from fraudsters. When you know how to identify a spoofed email, you can prevent this from happening. Spoofing attacks are subdivided into two categories: inbound and outbound. So let’s review the most effective tips that can help protect your personal information.

Inbound Spoofing Attacks

Have a look at the main tips that will help you defense against fraudsters:

  • Employee training. Remember that this niche is continuously evolving; fraudsters are always looking for new ways to get sensitive information from others. So, make sure your employees know what to do in these cases. 

  • Conventional email security controls. Make sure you have in-built cloud-based email systems that can block these emails.

  • Use identity-based protections. These tools can easily block phishing schemes and various email attacks.

  • Ask employees to check header information. When you analyze an email header, you’ll easily recognize if this particular email is suspicious. Check the delivery date, type of content, what language is used in an email, suspicious flags, etc. When your employees take some time to check this information, the risks of being spoofed will undoubtedly be lower.

Outbound Email Impersonation

When following the below-listed email authentication protocols, you can protect your colleagues from having their emails spoofed.

  • DKIM key (or DomainKeys Identified Mail). This tool uses asymmetric encryption to create a key pair. The public key is usually published in a record set in the DNS domain. In this case, a digital signature is linked to a domain name to every outgoing email.

  • Sender Policy Framework. This tool allows companies to choose what IP address is approved to send letters on their behalf.

  • Automated DMARC deployment solutions. These tools help protect defensive domains and can easily identify attacks from similar cloud platforms and domains.

  • DMARC (or Domain-based Message Authentication). It’s a well-known standard of email authentication, which operates as a policy layer for DKIM and SPF. In other words, the main goal of this solution is to see when an email is not coming from an approved domain. On top of that, it also offers directions on how to deal with unauthorized emails.

If you are still thinking that email spoofing is a thing of the past, you are mistaken. Cybercriminals are highly creative and are always working on the development of new ways on how to scam people and business owners. No matter whether it’s your personal email or an important business account, you have to do everything possible to protect the data from cybercriminals. We hope that our insightful pieces of advice will help you tackle that challenge!

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