In today’s digital age, securing your domain’s email communication has become more critical than ever. In this blog, we’ll explore how to set up MTA-STS and TLS reporting for your domain.
Till March 2023, there is no publicly available information on the number of organizations that have implemented MTA-STS record checker. However, Google has reported that as of 2021, over 80% of inbound email traffic to Gmail is encrypted. They expect this number to continue to grow as more organizations implement security standards, such as MTA-STS.
Let’s dive in!
TABLE OF CONTENTS
What Is MTA-STS?
Incoming email traffic for a domain is transmitted over an encrypted channel if the domain owner uses the MTA-STS protocol. This helps to prevent man-in-the-middle attacks and other types of email interception or tampering.
MTA-STS works by allowing domain owners to publish a special DNS record called an MTA-STS policy. This record specifies that the domain supports the MTA-STS protocol. It also specifies a set of security policies that email servers should follow when delivering email to that domain. It’s a domain of SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol).
When an email server receives a message with MTA-STS policy, it checks if the sending server supports the MTA-STS protocol. If it does, the receiving server will then check the MTA-STS record checker for that domain. It ensures that the sending server is using a secure, encrypted channel to deliver the email.
What Is TLS RPT?
Transport Layer Security reporting is a mechanism allowing website operators to monitor the use of TLS RPT on their sites. It also identifies any potential security issues. TLS is a protocol used to secure internet communication.
The TLS reporting works by allowing website operators to receive reports about the use of TLS on their sites. These reports can include information such as the TLS protocols and cipher suites used, and the duration of TLS connections.
Step-By-Step Guide To Setup MTA-STS and TLS Reports
The setup MTA-STS and TLS reporting for your domain involves several steps. Here is a detailed step-by-step guide:
Step 1: Ensure your domain supports HTTPS: MTA-STS and TLS reporting requires that your domain supports HTTPS, so ensure that your website is available over HTTPS. You will also need a valid SSL/TLS certificate for your domain.
Step 2: Create an MTA-STS policy: Create an MTA-STS policy for your domain and publish it in a DNS TXT record.
Step 3: Publish the MTA-STS policy: Check the MTA-STS record in a DNS TXT record for your domain. The record should be named “_mta-sts.yourdomain.com”. For example, if your domain is “example.com”, the record would be “_mta-sts.example.com”.
Step 4: Set up a reporting endpoint: Set up an endpoint to receive TLS reports from email servers. This endpoint should be over HTTPS and should be able to receive POST requests.
Step 5: Create a TLS reporting policy: Create a TLS reporting policy for your domain and publish it in a DNS TXT record. The TLS-RPT record checker policy should include the right information.
Step 6: Test your configuration: Use a tool like the MTA-STS Validator to test your MTA-STS and TLS reporting configuration. The validator will check your DNS records and verify that your configuration is correct.
Step 7: Monitor your logs: Monitor your logs for any errors or warnings related to MTA-STS and TLS reporting. This will allow you to identify any issues and take corrective action as necessary.
Why Should You Setup MTA-STS and TLS Reporting for Your Domain?
There are several reasons you should set up MTA-STS and TLS reporting for your domain:
- Improved email security: MTA-STS and TLS reporting help to ensure that email traffic for your domain is delivered securely over encrypted channels. This helps to prevent unauthorized access to sensitive information and helps to reduce the risk of email-based attacks, such as phishing and spoofing.
- Compliance with industry standards: Many industries and regulatory bodies require the use of secure email channels to protect sensitive information. MTA-STS and TLS reporting help to ensure that your domain complies with these standards and can help to avoid potential fines or other penalties.
- Increased transparency: TLS reporting provides valuable insights into the security of your email traffic, allowing you to identify any potential issues. It takes corrective action as necessary. This can help to improve your overall security posture and protect your organization from cyber threats.
- Improved email deliverability: By enforcing the use of secure email channels, MTA-STS can help improve the deliverability of email messages to your domain. This is because email servers are more likely to trust messages that are delivered over secure channels. It also reduces the risk of messages being marked as spam or rejected outright.
To cater more to protecting the users, read Protecting users with SPF, DMARC, DKIM, and MTA-STS.
Summing It Up
Setting up MTA-STS and TLS reports for your domain is an important step in improving the security of email traffic. Secure your email traffic and protect sensitive information by setting up MTA-STS and TLS reporting for your domain. GoDMARC‘s team of experts can help you configure and implement these essential security features. We ensure compliance with industry standards and improve your email deliverability. Protect your brand reputation and prevent email-based fraud with our DMARC services. Our team of experts can help you implement the DMARC report to monitor and enforce email authentication for your domain. Contact us for a free trial!
Q1. Do I need to have a dedicated server or hosting provider to set up MTA-STS and TLS reporting?
No, you do not need a dedicated server or hosting provider to set up MTA-STS and TLS reporting. You can set up these features using any standard DNS management tool provided by your domain registrar or hosting provider. Check out the TLS-RPT DNS record checker.
Q2. Is it mandatory to set up MTA-STS and TLS reporting for my domain?
No, it is not mandatory to set up MTA-STS and TLS reporting for your domain. It helps to improve the security and integrity of email traffic, protect sensitive information, and ensure compliance with industry standards. Experts recommend using MTA-STS and TLS reporting for the same reason.
Q3 How long does it take to set up MTA-STS and TLS reporting for my domain?
The time it takes to set up MTA-STS and TLS reporting for your domain depends on the complexity of your domain infrastructure and your level of familiarity with DNS management. However, it typically takes less than an hour to complete the setup process and check from the free TLS-RPT record generator tool.