Build resilient systems at scale
May 27–29, 2015 • Santa Clara, CA

What you should know about email authentication

Kurt Andersen (LinkedIn)
11:00am–12:30pm Wednesday, 05/27/2015
Location: Mission City M1-2
Average rating: ****.
(4.17, 12 ratings)
Slides:   external link

Prerequisite Knowledge

This session should be useful for everyone except the most experienced email gurus. A basic understanding of email will help participants.

Materials or downloads needed in advance

some way to take notes should be the only pre-req


Email remains a key mechanism to communicate with your business’s users. Mostly behind the scenes, email has been changing over the last 10 years. Initially created in the “trust everyone” early days of the internet, email has been shifting to thwart its exploitation by abusers, spammers, and miscreants of various stripes. The biggest step toward a trusted email environment has been the development of domain authentication for sources of email. Even if you outsource most of the heavy lifting for sending your service’s email flow, this tutorial will help you to know which questions to ask when interviewing potential vendors. If you drive your own email flows, this information will be critical to ensure that you can effectively deliver your message to your end users—reliably, safely and while protecting your brand identity.

Email authentication is an alphabet soup of IETF standards, from SMTP through the latest standard in work, DMARC. This guided tour will help you sort out how to configure your DNS and your mail systems to work with internal sources and external vendors. Ensuring that your messages adhere to the accepted industry standards and best practices will reduce the likelihood that your messages are rejected by receiver systems, and increase the reliability of communicating to your intended recipients. Authenticated email is the best protection for your brand and for your users alike.

This tutorial will cover SMTP, ESMTP, MIME, SPF, DKIM, DMARC and best practices for email sending, so that end-to-end, your message will have the best chance of getting through the gauntlet of noise that bombards most inboxes.

The tutorial will also include suggestions on how to implement these practices within an existing organization.

Photo of Kurt Andersen

Kurt Andersen



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Picture of Kurt Andersen
Kurt Andersen
05/25/2015 10:28am PDT

If any of the folks who have signed up to attend this session could leave a brief note about any questions or problems you are hoping to find answers to, I’ll do my best to incorporate answers into the session.