Can I Set Up DMARC Without DKIM?

can i setup dmarc without dkim

When DKIM is configured in a DMARC implementation, the likelihood of valid emails successfully passing DMARC authentication increases.

Considering that most email systems let you configure both SPF and DKIM, you should absolutely use DKIM in addition to SPF. DMARC does not mandate the use of DKIM. Setting up DKIM, on the other hand, reduces the number of false negatives that occur during the DMARC authentication process.


What is DMARC?

DMARC is an email authentication, policy, and reporting protocol that allows businesses to safeguard their domain against unauthorized use, such as attacks involving impersonation and phishing.

Why do use DMARC Services? 

The following are the four primary advantages that may accrue to companies who setup dmarc

  • Security Blocking illegal usage of your email domain may help protect users from malicious activities such as phishing, spam, and other online fraud. 
  • Visibility: You may get in-depth data about who (or what) is sending an email using your domain name on the internet. 
  • Deliverability Raise the percentage of emails that are successfully sent by 5–10% and stop emails from being marked as SPAM
  • Protection of the brand Protects your brand from assaults that target your identity specifically.

What is DKIM?

DKIM is a standard for email authentication that uses public-private key cryptography to sign messages sent over email. DKIM record is used to confirm that the email originated from the domain connected to the DKIM key and that the email had not been altered while it was being sent.

Set up DMARC without DKIM

  1. Select a DKIM selection to use. It needs to be a plain text string that is user-defined and will be attached to the domain name to assist in identifying the DKIM public key (for example, “standard”). For illustration purposes, the term “standard.” refers to the hostname.
  2. Create a pair of public and private keys for use with your domain. PUTTYGen is available to end-users running Windows. SSH-keygen is available for usage by Linux and Mac users as well.
  3. Please make a new TXT Record public and publish it. Using the public key from the pair described above, create a new record in your DNS management panel. Take the following as an example: v=DKIM1; p=YourPublicKey

Can I set up DMARC without DKIM?

You can check dmarc even if DKIM is not included in the equation; all that is required is DMARC and SPF. In this scenario, the DKIM check will always fail. The DMARC authentication result will depend on the SPF check and the alignment of the SPF identifier, both of which still operate to some extent but are less than ideal.

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Deploying DMARC

  • Prevent the Establishment of Parked (inactive) Domains

Every business makes use of dkim record checker for its operational parts. However, the vast majority of companies also have parked domains, which are domains that are not actively being used, and they do not install DMARC for these domains. All outbound messages that use DKIM have an encrypted identity added to their header. In order to decipher the email header and confirm that the content was not altered after it was sent, email servers that receive verified messages utilize the DKIM public key. The public and private keys must be made and allocated appropriately in order to generate DKIM record. It is a typical oversight not to configure dmarc with dkim for dormant domains. Even though you may not send email using your parked domains, someone else could misuse them. Because these domains are not currently being used, it is pretty simple to safeguard them. During your DMARC installation project, you should not ignore these domains.

  • Immediately going to a whole ‘Reject’ policy

We often see businesses beginning to adopt DMARC and immediately switching to a complete “Reject” policy. Moving straight to a total “Reject” policy is a typical error that should be avoided since doing so would almost certainly cause the loss of valid email. We strongly suggest carrying out DMARC policy deployment in stages. Begin by monitoring your traffic and checking for variations in the reports, such as unsigned messages or messages that are perhaps being faked. If you find any, take note of them. When you reach a point where you are satisfied with the outcomes, gradually shift your policy to one of ‘Quarantine.’ Repeat the process of monitoring the results, but this time pay attention to both your spam catch and the DMARC reports. Change your policy to ‘Reject’ whenever you are confident without a shadow of a doubt that every one of your emails has been signed. Be careful to keep an eye on all the reports to verify that your findings are satisfactory.

  • Not working on your alignment

DMARC’s primary responsibility is to verify that the email address included in the message’s “From” header belongs to the sender of the statement in question. Both DKIM and SPF are used in the verification process of senders. When a message is said to be aligned, it signifies that the ‘From’ and the sender domains are the same. Businesses often alter their policy even if DKIM and SPF have not yet been completely synchronized. This is a mistake that many people make. If you change your policy when DKIM and SPF are not entirely aligned, you will most likely see a drop in the volume of genuine emails. Before making any changes to your DMARC policy, you should always check to ensure that DKIM and SPF are entirely aligned.

  • More than ten lookups in your SPF record

When adopting dkim office 365, one of the most typical mistakes that may be made is having an SPF record with more than ten lookups. SPF permits up to ten ‘dkim lookup,’ which helps to lighten the burden on the end of the email recipient. If you have more than ten lookups, the items following the 10th lookup may not (and probably won’t) qualify as legitimate SPF sources. This happens when you have more than ten lookups. If you have more than ten lookups, the number of lookups will need to be cut down.

Related Article: What is DKIM and Why is it Important for Email?


It is vital to test the setup for SPF, DKIM, and DMARC to ensure that the stated rules function as they were meant to and do not end up blocking valid emails. Because of this, beginning with solutions that include relaxed or temporary isolation is probably a reasonable choice. A company may better understand what is happening with its email domains using DMARC reporting and forensics. Although it is feasible to look at and analyze the contents of each DMARC report email to figure out what is going on, this strategy does not scale well. GoDMARC is a DMARC solution provider. Get your DMARC Services now! We offer the best DMARC pricing at affordable rates.


Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. Can I setup DMARC without SPF?

Yes, it is possible to configure DMARC without using SPF. You are free to investigate this option, which many sellers and owners of domains really put into practise on a regular basis.

Q2. Does DMARC use DKIM?

You are able to configure DMARC even if SPF is not present. You have the opportunity to investigate this option, which a significant number of sellers and owners of domain names really put into practice in real time.

Q3. Is DKIM Needed and How to Generate DKIM Record?

DMARC relies on Sender Policy Framework (SPF) and Domain Keys Identified Mail (DKIM) in order to authenticate emails even further by comparing the validity of SPF and DKIM data. You will be able to create rules and get reports automatically produced in the event that the DMARC validation is unsuccessful. The public and private keys must be made and allocated appropriately in order to generate DKIM record.

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