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i n f o r m a t i o n

DKeyEvent SM is a plugin for SmarterMail, that signs and authenticates messages according to DomainKeys and DKIM specifications. Besides being designed to prevent 'identity spoofing' - i.e. claiming that mail originates from a different domain - by hashing each message on transmission, it can check whether a message has been altered prior to delivery, and, should it be the case, restore the message to its original form.

. spam

Despite what one might think, spam is in fact a serious problem. People tend to think that if they only receive a couple of spam messages every now and then, it's not a problem for them, when in fact it is.

Issues of ethics aside, the simple fact is that spam generates traffic, and the sheer amount of spam that one can see these days can have a serious impact on network resources. This is especially relevant for large mail providers, for whom spam is simply translated into less resources available to their users. The inevitable consequence of this is that those who are most seriously affected by spam have had to resort to ever more forceful measures to fight it. And this, unfortunately, means that legitimate mail is often caught in the process.

Thus, you might not be affected by the spam you receive, but it might happen that an important mail you send is accidentally labeled as spam, and directed to the trashcan without the recipient ever knowing it.

This being the situation, it becomes obvious that one not only has to prevent incoming spam, but also take steps to ensure that their mail is not accidentally labeled as such.

Now one might not realize this, but mail providers often have good reasons for blocking your mail. It could very well happen that they have already received spam coming from your domain. Or at least claiming to come from your domain. Identity spoofing, unfortunately, has become a common practice for those who send spam. It is therefore important for you to protect your identity and all that comes with it, and this is where DomainKeys becomes relevant to you.

. DomainKeys

DomainKeys is a technology proposal that gives email providers a mechanism for verifying both the domain of each email sender and the integrity of the messages sent (i.e. that they were not altered during transit). By signing with, and subsequently verifying DomainKeys signatures, the recipient can be sure that a message does indeed come from its alleged sender, and whether the message has arrived intact, or has otherwise been altered during transit. The result of this is that one can safely detect forged messages coming either from spammers, or else from even more dangerous entities trying to impersonate legitimate third parties. Email based scams such as 'phishing', perhaps even more than spam, are a growing concern which DomainKeys can help prevent.

. DKeyEvent

DKeyEvent is an external command-line application for SmarterMail, that filters your mail according to DomainKeys and DKIM specifications. On the one hand it helps sort incoming spam by checking the authenticity of DomainKeys-signed incoming messages, and on the other hand it helps prevent your mail from being classified as spam by signing it and certifying your identity as sender. All this is transparent to the user, and once configured on the mail server, it needs no further action to make it work.

Unlike many anti-spam filters, DKeyEvent is not an enforcer. That is, it will not make you lose messages, and it will not impose any action on the user. When checking incoming mail, DKeyEvent will append a header to the message, in which the DomainKeys authentication result is displayed. Then, it is up to the user's mail client to decide how to handle the message. Of course, as an administrator, you can also make the decision yourself, by using an additional filter either on the domain or postoffice level. This way, one can have server-wide protection, but also case-by-case flexibility.

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