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Vanderbilt IT to submit ‘soft records’ to combat phishing

Sep. 16, 2014, 3:25 PM

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In an effort to combat problems caused by spamming and phishing, Vanderbilt IT plans to publish “soft records” for email servers on Sept. 22 as part of the Sender Policy Framework. SPF empowers mail exchangers to differentiate between authorized Vanderbilt email servers and those merely posing as such.

“The reason why the SPF record is so crucial is because there may be someone down the street working on a phishing scam whose server falsely claims to be part of the Vanderbilt community,” said Scott Hogan, director of core infrastructure services. “Publishing the record is the first step in combating this.”

SPF is ultimately an email authentication system that compares the sending server’s address to the published list of authorized servers. By choosing to publish its soft record, Vanderbilt University is taking another step to ensure that all faculty, student and staff emails are delivered successfully to the correct inbox.

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