Powerful new antiphishing weapon DKIM emerges

DKIM standard attracts Cisco, Google, PayPal and more

Spoofers, spammers and phishers, beware. There's a new gun in town, and some of the Internet's most powerful companies -- including Yahoo, Google, PayPal and AOL -- are brandishing it in the ongoing battle against e-mail fraud.

The new weapon is called DKIM, an emerging e-mail authentication standard developed by the Internet Engineering Task Force. DKIM, which stands for DomainKeys Identified Mail, allows an organization to cryptographically sign outgoing e-mail to verify that it sent the message.

DKIM addresses one of the Internet's biggest threats: e-mail fraud. As much as 80 per cent of e-mail from leading brands, banks and ISPs is spoofed, according to a report released in late January by the Authentication and Online Trust Alliance (AOTA). AOTA analyzed more than 100 million e-mails from Fortune 500 brands sent over a five-month period.

"It's a critical need that IT professionals look at e-mail authentication as a competitive advantage to protect their brands and their customers from these exploits as well as to protect their employees from spoofed or forged e-mail coming into their networks," says Craig Spiezle, chairman of AOTA.

DKIM proponents say the standard is an important step in rebuilding consumer confidence in e-mail.

"DKIM increases the trust with which people can regard their e-mail," says Jim Fenton, a distinguished engineer with Cisco and one of the authors of the standard. "DKIM isn't going to put an end to phishing, but I'm confident that DKIM is going to make it harder for phishing attacks to occur."

Under development since 2004, DKIM is finally reaching a critical mass. It's expected to be widely deployed this year, particularly in financial services and e-commerce firms. Early adopters include Bank of America, American Greetings and Cisco.

"My guess is that probably half of the Fortune 1000 will be DKIM signing in 2008," predicts Greg Olson, director of product management at Sendmail, which started shipping a DKIM-compliant e-mail appliance in November.

"I do feel that 2008 is the year when things are going to come together for DKIM," says Patrick Peterson, vice president of technology for IronPort, an e-mail appliance vendor that supports DKIM. "We have the Internet standard. We have a tremendous amount of vendor support...DKIM is solid as a rock."

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Carolyn Duffy Marsan

Network World
Show Comments

Essentials

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?