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Email Spoofing

What is email spoofing?

Spoofing, in general, refers to disguising the source of communication. When cybercriminals use emails as a tool for deceiving recipients by forging an email header, it's called email spoofing.

The email recipient is tricked into believing that the email is from a trusted source and is likely to take action based on its contents.

How to prevent email spoofing?

Email spoofing can take many forms:

Name spoofing: The attacker fakes the identity or display name of a person that the email recipient might trust.

Domain spoofing: If the recipient has subscribed to emails from a trusted domain, the attackers can impersonate the domain to deceive them.

Look-alike domain spoofing: In this case, a domain mentioned in the email address is used to deceive the recipient visually by sending emails from a similar domain. For example, if the letter 'o' in the domain address is replaced with a '0', the recipient is visually tricked into believing that the email is from a trusted source.

Certain security protocols help administrators safeguard their domain from cybercriminals. If these protocols are not configured in the mail servers, there is no check on the sender's authentication and the domain is highly susceptible to attacks like email spoofing, phishing, spam, and other cybercrimes.

These protocols are:

  • Sender Policy Framework (SPF
  • DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM
  • Domain-based Authentication Reporting and Conformance (DMARC