Friday, December 22, 2023

SPF, DKIM, and DMARC Explained


Emails are like the superheroes of modern business communication - it transcends distances, shares ideas, and keeps everyone in the loop. It is not about sending words, but building relationships, making connections and transactions that matter. But lurking in the shadows are cyber threats, often disguised as emails aiming to deceive and compromise security.

Picture this: You wake up to find an email from your bank, urgently requesting your login details due to a supposed security breach. Alarming, right? Yet, such emails, despite seeming legitimacy, might be fraudulent attempts aiming to dupe unsuspecting recipients into divulging sensitive information. Enter the trio of email authentication protocols: SPF, DKIM, and DMARC. These ensure that the emails landing in your inbox are the real deal, not sneaky imposters trying to cause trouble. Email authentication might sound technical but think of it as a special lock or shield that keeps your emails safe and trustworthy. For businesses that use email a lot, it is like a handshake that assures recipients that the email that they are reading is genuine. 

SPF: Sender Policy Network

SPF is like a bouncer for your email inbox. It also determines which servers are authorized to send emails on behalf of a domain. SPF works by publishing a specific list of authorized email servers in the DNS (Domain Name System) records of a domain.

Here is the SPF record published by Reddit as an example:

SPF Record by Reddit

This implies that your inbox should receive emails from addresses only if they were sent from servers at,,,, and those particular IP addresses listed as approved servers within the DNS records. When an email arrives, SPF validation kicks in. It checks if the sending server matches the designated records. If the server's identity aligns with the records, the email is more likely to get through. If not, it might be marked as suspicious or even get rejected.

DKIM: Seal of Approval

DKIM, or DomainKeys Identified Mail, is similar to affixing a digital seal to your emails. It operates by adding an encrypted signature to the email's header using a private key. The corresponding public key, residing in the domain's DNS records, allows the recipient's email provider to verify the email's authenticity. This cryptographic signature acts a tamper-proof seal, ensuring the email's content remains unaltered throughout its journey.

Emails like this often appear in spam folder, prompting a cautionary approach due to suspicious origins.

Suspicious email, report phishing button

Deep diving into the mail specifics,

Yellow warning banner, unfamiliar sender

'Mailed-by' refers to the sender's domain. If the correct domain appears here, it means the email passed SPF authentication.

'Signed-by' showcases a sample DKIM. However, in this example, the sender used a generic Google DKIM signature, hence the different signed-by domain. Using a generic DKIM signature signifies absence of a customized DKIM setup. This situation often leads to the email being flagged or marked as suspicious.

The importance of setting up DKIM is to establish email's authenticity. If the domain implements a custom DKIM, the 'signed-by' domain will display the same domain as in the "from" address, increasing the email's credibility.

DMARC: Orchestrating Email Security

DMARC stands for Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance. It is an email authentication protocol that helps prevent email spoofing and phishing by allowing domain owners to specify how their emails should be authenticated.

DMARC works right after confirming authentication with SPF and/or DKIM. If the answer is yes, the next step DMARC will do is domain alignment. Domain alignment ensures that the domain used in the "From" address of the email aligns with the actual domain that sent the email. It checks two things: SOF, which confirms the sender's server, and DKIM, which adds a digital signature to the email. If alignment is successful, it enhances email security, making it harder for malicious actors to impersonate legitimate senders. If alignment fails, DMARC policies can instruct receiving mail servers on how to handle these unauthenticated emails, reducing the risk of phishing and spoofing attacks.

SPF, DKIM, and DMARC in Harmony

When harmoniously implemented, SPF, DKIM, and DMARC form an impenetrable shield against email spoofing and phishing. Their collaborative efforts not only bolster email security but also enhance deliverability, enduring legitimate emails reach their intended recipients' boxes rather than the dreaded spam folders or worse, be rejected.

Friday, December 8, 2023

Maximize Your Business Potential with Microsoft Office 365 - Seamless Deployment by Interlock IT


Having the perfect tools can make all the difference for businesses. Imagine this: Microsoft Office 365, the superhero suite that transforms how teams work and collaborate. At Interlock IT, we are not just a face in the crowd; we are part of Microsoft's 5% crew, flaunting our Silver Microsoft Partner Competency badge with our pride. Our mission? To be your guiding star through the incredible world of Microsoft Office 365. We've got the expertise, the experience, and the passion to make your journey to Office 365 as smooth as can be.

Unlocking the Power of Microsoft Office 365

Many businesses face the challenge of navigating the complex world of Office 365 deployment. The wrong implementation can lead to unnecessary recurring support costs or the inefficient "managed services." Interlock IT believes in doing it right for the first time. We ensure that your Office 365 deployment aligns perfectly with your business needs, eliminating ongoing "break and fix" expenses.

Partnering for Success

As a Silver Microsoft Partner, Interlock IT stands out in providing solutions that leverage the full potential of Microsoft Office 365. We understand the intricacies of this suite - Microsoft Teams, OneDrive, SharePoint, Outlook - hosted by Microsoft without hefty upfront costs of an on-premise deployment.

Why Choose Interlock IT for Microsoft Office 365?

  • Expert Deployment: We deploy Office 365 with precision, ensuring a seamless integration tailored to your business requirements.

  • Eliminating Unnecessary Costs: Say goodbye to unnecessary recurring support expenses. Our deployment ensures a cost-efficient setup, eliminating the need for ongoing "break and fix" solutions.

  • Empowering Productivity: Harness the power of Office 365's rich desktop-based applications combined with the flexibility of fully hosted Internet services for unparalleled productivity.

  • Seamless Collaboration: Enable seamless collaboration and communication across your organization, transforming the way your teams work together.

Your Path to Office 365 Success Starts Here

Don't let the complexities of Office 365 deployment hold your business back. Partner with Interlock IT, where expertise meets experience, ensuring a hassle-free and successful implementation of Microsoft Office 365.

Ready to Transform Your Business?

Get in touch with us today, and let's embark on this journey together. With Interlock IT by your side, embrace the power of Microsoft Office 365, propelling your business towards enhanced productivity, collaboration, and success!

Friday, December 1, 2023

Maxed Out: Understanding Google Workspace's Pooled Storage Exceeded

Pooled Storage Limit

Are you exhausted by the constant flood of email alerts and notifications, incessantly reminding you that your pooled limit storage has exceeded? Seeking a subscription upgrade but frustrated by the slow and cumbersome response from Google support? Whether you are a seasoned user or just stepping into the world of Google Workspace, these alerts disrupt your workflow, hindering productivity, and causing unnecessary stress. Why not opt for a direct conversation with a human, at no extra cost, to find your best subscription? Interlock IT is your solution. Interlock IT is here, providing personalized guidance to simplify your subscription, minus the hassles.

We all know that Google is always on the move, tweaking how we store and manage data. Recently, Google switched up how storage works in Google Workspace. Previously, everyone had their own storage limit, but now it is all about this shared pool of storage for the whole company. According to Google, "Pooled storage provides a more simple and flexible way to manage storage, as all storage is shared across the organization, removing the need to manage it on a per-user basis."

Here's the scoop: instead of each person having their own storage limit, the company now shares one big pool of storage. Sounds good, right? Well, the tricky part comes when this shared pool hits its limit, and suddenly there's a risk of not being able to create new documents. That's what Google calls "pooled storage exceeded."

What's the fix? Google has 2 suggestions: it is either freeing up your Google storage space or buying more Google storage. Opting for a higher-tier plan in your Google storage is a more favourable option than constantly trying to free up space within your existing storage. Sure, it might cost a bit more, but it also means getting more storage space. This upgrade helps avoid productivity losses that happen when the shared storage pool hits its cap.

This shift to shared storage in Google Workspace means a more collective way of managing space but also calls for a heads-up about possible limits. Getting that higher-tier plan might mean a smoother ride in the long run, ensuring everyone can keep working seamlessly in Workspace.

In the end, Google's storage switch has its upsides and downsides. Sharing storage means a more collective approach, but it also means keeping an eye on those limits. Opting for an upgraded plan can save a lot headaches, ensuring things keep running smoothly within Google Workspace.

Contact Interlock IT, and let us assist you in choosing the most suitable Google Workspace subscription at the best value, all without any additional cost!