Fifteen e-mail and technology providers—including AOL, Google, Yahoo and Microsoft—have joined forces to fight scam e-mails, the companies announced on Monday.
A new industry group—the Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance group—will promote standards aimed at making it harder for criminals to send e-mails masquerading as official communication from financial instituions and service providers in order to access sensitive private information, a practice known as phishing. Some of the standards are already in use, The Wall Street Journal reported.
E-mail from the group's member companies, some of which have been coordinated in the fight against phishing over the past 18 months, constitutes a sizable chunk of messages received by Gmail users.
"About 15 percent of all e-mail in the Gmail in-boxes comes from these [member] organizations," Adam Dawes, a Gmail product manager, told CNET News. "That means that these records can not be domain spoofed."
The companies involved are split into three groups:
- E-mail receivers: AOL, GMail, Hotmail, Yahoo! Mail.
- E-mail senders: American Greetings, Bank of America, Facebook, Fidelity, LinkedIn, Paypal.
- Intermediaries & Vendors: Agari, Cloudmark, eCert, ReturnPath, Trusted Domain Project.