What is RUF or DMARC Forensic Report?
Everything you need to know about RUF and DMARC Forensic Reports
What is RUF?
RUF data was created with the intention of providing domain owners with redacted copies of emails that failed to pass the DMARC compliance test.When seeking to establish the true origin of lawful email streams that require repair, domain owners can use the additional facts supplied in the forensic reports. Most DMARC reporters do not conduct RUF reporting due to privacy concerns regarding incomplete or poor redaction. The goal is to avoid data breaches and to follow all applicable rules and regulations regarding sensitive and personal information. RUF is a more comprehensive report because it includes more information about emails, such as the subject, header, attachments, and URLs.
RUF reports may contain the following information:
- IP information
- Subject line
- The time when the message was received
- Delivery result
- SPF, DKIM, and DMARC results
- ISP information
- ‘From’ domain information
DMARC Forensic Reports Overview
Unlike aggregate reports, forensic reports are sent out if an email from your domain fails both the SPF and DKIM authentication protocols. These reports contain data about the spoofed email such as the sending email address, receiving email address, subject, and, sometimes, the header of the email. Due to this, they are utilized for in-depth investigation of emails impersonating an organization’s domain.
To decrease noise and only receive forensic reports of spoofed emails, activate these reports after analyzing the aggregate reports and allowing all the valid sources. When the SPF or DKIM does not match DMARC, an ISP generates DMARC forensic reports. Sample data in forensic reports indicates that there is a problem with a specific source or transmitting IP. Message-level data, “To” and “From” email addresses, and the sender’s IP addresses are all included in the forensic reports.
It is also possible to view a message’s body, which may include sensitive information. Therefore, not all ISPs send these forensic reports. However, receiving these forensic findings could aid in the DMARC deployment process. The receiver for the failure reports is specified by the “ruf” tag in your DMARC record.
For example, ruf=mailto:email@example.com
You can also use the “fo” tag in your DMARC record to identify the types of failures for which you want forensics. When both SPF and DKIM fail, failure reports are sent by default. These reports:
- Are real-time reports
- Are only sent for DMARC failed emails
- May contain the Subject and Body content of the email
- Include original message headers
Receiving DMARC Forensic Reports
To receive an aggregate report, firstly create a DMARC record. A DMARC record invites DMARC reporting organizations to send DMARC aggregate reports back to the sender of an email. The record contains a RUF tag like the one in the following example:
This is the email address to which the DMARC reporting organization will send the DMARC forensic report. Similar to requesting for aggregate reports, requests can be made to send failure reports to a temporary email address. For example, to request for failure reports be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org, you can add a RUF tag with that email to your DMARC record in the following manner:
v=DMARC1; p=none; rua=mailto:email@example.com;
RUF vs. RUA
|Provides details of an individual email||Provides aggregate data on a group of emails|
|To receive failure reports, set up the ‘ruf’ tag||To receive aggregate reports, set up the ‘rua’ tag|
|Sent almost immediately after the authentication failure||Sent every day by default|
|Contains personally identifiable information||Does not contain personally identifiable information|
|Not supported in all mailbox providers||Supported in all DMARC-compliant mailbox providers|
How Does DMARC Help?
GLOBAL STATISTICS JUSTIFYING THE NEED FOR EMAIL AUTHENTICATION
DMARC has been adopted by the biggest email senders and email receivers globally. This includes Yahoo!, Google, and Microsoft, covering 85% of the consumer inboxes in the world.
The most important reason why DMARC should be used is that it gives an organisation full control on how their domain is being used. The organisation can also instruct the receivers on what actions should be taken if the incoming email is not legitimate and report the incident back to the organisation for further analysis.
It saves consumers from the trouble of identifying whether an email is legitimate or a spam. Sometimes it may happen that regardless of all the knowledge of email spoofing a receiver might fall into the trap. DMARC makes sure that this does not happen.