Trusted identity vendors Entrust have made moves to improve email authentication and brand assurance by making their Verified Mark Certificates (VMCs) generally available to support Brand Indicators for Message Identification (BIMI) standards. Google announced the company’s general general support for these standards as they apply to Gmail recently.
BIMI is a cross-industry effort to standardise the transmission and use of brand logos in emails. As email has become more critical than ever for organisations to connect and communicate with their customers, the ecosystem is looking to BIMI as an opportunity to increase the wide adoption of email authentication while simultaneously providing senders with a way to provide their customers a more immersive experience. Email recipients using participating email providers like Gmail will see registered brand logos from BIMI users in their emails.
Beyond benefiting security, adopting BIMI with DMARC can provide an organisation’s customers with a more immersive experience in Gmail. By encouraging the deployment of DMARC and promoting its adoption, BIMI benefits the whole email ecosystem to promote strong sender authentication.
Several major brands have already begun adopting BIMI standards and use of VMCs to authenticate their email communications. Ally Financial has been working with Entrust to pilot the use of VMCs for the past year.
“As a customer-centric company, anything that helps us build trust with our customers is an asset. The BIMI standard delivers our familiar trademark in email providers supporting BIMI, giving our customers confidence that emails from Ally are authenticated with security standards shown to prevent spoofing and phishing,” said David Hixon, executive director, CRM at Ally.
The BIMI standard requires a Verified Mark Certificate (VMC) from an authorised Mark Verifying Authority. The VMC which works alongside an organisation’s Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting and Conformance (DMARC) protocol policy. Entrust created the initial concept of the VMC in conjunction with the AuthIndicators working group and issued the first VMC in September 2019.
“Entrust is a proud leader of this new standard for strong email authentication, and we are excited to see it gain widespread adoption with the addition of Gmail’s support. We expect other email providers to add their support for VMCs in the coming months,” said Chris Bailey, vice president of strategy and business development at Entrust. “We have been collaborating with the BIMI working group for over four years, and are committed to delivering verified brand indicators in email as an important benefit to brands and their customers.