Application security

Microsoft touts Sender ID to stop spam


Microsoft on Tuesday promised to increase efforts to combat spam by pushing adoption of its Sender ID framework for email authentication.

Sender ID is an authentication protocol created through industry collaboration and championed by Microsoft. It works by verifying the domain name from which email is sent by checking the IP address of the server that sent the message against a published list of legitimate IP addresses for the domain the message claims to be from.

"Companies of all sizes are realizing the significant business value of email authentication and reputation services to improve email deliverability and help protect their brand identities," said Craig Spiezle, director of the Technology Care and Safety Group at Microsoft. "In particular, businesses are adopting Sender ID because it requires few if any changes to most email systems, and typically there are no hard costs or additional software required to implement it, making it simple and cost-effective."

According to data attributed to MarkMonitor and cited by Microsoft, research gathered surveying the Domain Name System (DNS) indicates that there has been a three-fold increase in Sender ID adoption among Fortune 500 companies, increasing from seven percent in July 2005 to 21 percent in March 2006.

The Redmond-based software developer also claimed that in the past year, the number of dotcom and dotnet domains publishing their SPF records jumped by more than 125 percent, increasing from 750,000 domains in March 2005 to 2.16 million domains in March 2006. It added that MarkMonitor and VeriSign found that with more than 3.3 million domains worldwide are now sending Sender ID-compliant email.

More than a dozen third-party solutions are shipping that support Sender ID, including technology from Alt-N Technologies, Barracuda Networks, CipherTrust, Cloudmark, ICONIX, IronPort Systems, MailFrontier, Microsoft, Port25 Solutions, Sendmail Inc., OmniTI Computer Consulting, StrongMail Systems, Symantec and Tumbleweed Communications.

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