Let’s imagine you’re a postmaster. You need to keep track of all the letters coming in and going out of your post office. To do this, you create a logbook where you note down details about each letter. Now, imagine if there was a rule that said you had to write these details in a specific way. This rule would be like the DMARC Report Format Registry.

What Is the DMARC Report Format Registry?

The DMARC Report Format Registry is like a rulebook that tells postmasters (in this case, email servers) how to write down details about emails. These details are important because they help identify emails that are pretending to be from your domain (like a scammer sending a letter with your return address).

The rulebook is maintained by a group called the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA). They make sure that each rule (or format) in the rulebook is well-defined and useful. Each rule must include a name, a brief description, and its status (which can be “current”, “experimental”, or “historic”).

What’s an Example of a Rule in the DMARC Report Format Registry?

One of the rules in the DMARC Report Format Registry is called “afrf”. This rule is defined in a document called RFC 7489. The rule is currently in use (its status is “current”).

The “afrf” rule tells email servers how to write down details about emails that failed the DMARC check. This is like noting down details about a suspicious letter that doesn’t seem to be from the return address it claims to be from.

For example, an email server might note down details like this:

From: [email protected]
To: [email protected]
Subject: You've won a million dollars!
DMARC Check: Fail

This is a simplified explanation, but hopefully, it gives you a basic understanding of the DMARC Report Format Registry. In reality, using DMARC involves a lot of complex processes and technologies. But just like a postmaster keeping track of letters, it’s all about making sure communication is trustworthy and secure.

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