As remote work becomes the cornerstone of modern business, email emerges as both a lifeline and a lurking vulnerability. The need to fortify this essential communication channel has never been more critical.
Fortunately, there’s a solution to this challenge—DMARC. Keep reading to explore the top cybersecurity threats for remote workers, what DMARC is and how it works, and how it can be used to protect email communication.
1. Weak Passwords
As the first and most common line of defense, passwords are often the weakest link within an organization’s cybersecurity framework. With remote workers using personal devices to access work email, keeping passwords safe is even more challenging.
Employees must use unique, strong passwords, change them regularly, and not use them across accounts. Generating and managing password security should involve a combination of a company policy and educational programs provided to employees.
2. Phishing and Email Scams
Phishing emails and scams are constantly evolving and becoming more sophisticated, exposing remote workers to vulnerabilities in their email communication security.
Basic training on identifying and handling suspicious emails is crucial, and remote workers must be trained on identifying signs like links and attachments, email addresses, and request types.
Email solutions that incorporate predictive features could also help prevent phishing attempts before they do any harm.
3. Unencrypted File Sharing
Remote workers often use file-sharing apps to send data outside the security of a company’s IT infrastructure. Without robust email security measures in place, such applications might put sensitive data at risk.
Organizations should prioritize using tools that support end-to-end encryption to keep communication secure and provide remote access to secure servers.
4. Public Wi-Fi
Employees working remotely may depend on public Wi-Fi, which is usually unsecured and could easily be intercepted by malicious actors.
A secure VPN offers employees working outside office walls secure access to a company’s internal email communication and minimizes the possibility of cybercriminals accessing sensitive data.
5. Personal Devices for Work
While personal devices like mobile phones and laptops make remote work more convenient, they pose a significant security risk. Personal devices are often not as secure, and if an employee loses or misplaces their device, it could lead to security breaches on a large scale.
The use of mobile device management tools can help organizations that support the use of personal devices.
DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance) is an email authentication protocol that allows email receivers to verify that incoming messages come from an authenticated sender, ensuring that emails sent from domains are genuine and authorized.
By implementing DMARC, companies, and organizations can ensure that employee email is secure even beyond office walls.
What is DMARC?
DMARC combines two existing email security protocols: Sender Policy Framework (SPF) and Domain Keys Identified Mail (DKIM).
The SPF and DKIM authenticate emails by verifying received messages’ sender authentication protocols, which, in turn, protect the domain from unauthorized use.
DMARC provides a domain owner’s email authentication policies to receiving mail servers to establish whether incoming messages are genuine or a phishing attempt.
Breakdown: DMARC, SPF, and DKIM
DMARC, SPF, and DKIM are authentication protocols designed to improve email deliverability and email security.
Though the aim is the same, protocols vary:
Remote work has made organizations more vulnerable to email-based cyberattacks, and DMARC offers a cost-effective solution that protects email communication beyond office walls. Beyond DMARC, other measures like multi-factor authentication, encryption, and employee training are essential to keep remote email communication secure.
By adopting DMARC and other security best practices, organizations can keep remote workers safe and secure and protect themselves from data breaches and cyberattacks.