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What is SPF (Sender Policy Framework) and why do I need it?

Updated: 05 February 2024 15:39:08 OpenCRM::Emails Windows::Outlook Hosted::Services Hosted::Services::Domain Hosted::Services::Email

If you intend to send emails from your OpenCRM system you will need to set up an SPF record for your domain to ensure that these emails can be received.

1. Why is having an SPF record important?

2. What is an SPF record and how does it relate to OpenCRM?

3. How do I create an SPF record?

4. I'm ready to set up my SPF record

If you already understand SPF and are ready to set this up you can skip to "I'm ready to set up my SPF record" at the end of this article.


Sender Address Forgery

Today, nearly all abusive e-mail messages carry a fake sender addresses. The victims whose addresses are being abused often suffer from the consequences, because their reputation gets diminished and they have to disclaim liability for the abuse, or waste their time sorting out misdirected bounce messages.

You probably have experienced one kind of abuse or another of your e-mail address yourself in the past, e.g. when you received an error message saying that a message allegedly sent by you could not be delivered to the recipient, although you never sent a message to that address.

Sender address forgery is a threat to users and companies alike, and it even undermines the e-mail medium as a whole because it erodes people's confidence in its reliability. That is why your bank never sends you information about your account by e-mail and keeps making a point of that fact.


The Solution: SPF

The Sender Policy Framework (SPF) is an open standard specifying a technical method to prevent sender address forgery. 

SPF allows the owner of a domain to specify which mail servers they use to send mail from their domain. Firstly the domain owner publishes this information via an SPF entry in the domain's DNS records, then when someone else's mail server receives a message claiming to come from that domain, the receiving server can check whether the message comes from a server specified in the DNS records for that domain.


What does this mean in relation to OpenCRM?

If you are using OpenCRM to send emails then you will not be using your own email server to do so. Emails sent from OpenCRM will be sent through our server infrastructure. In order to ensure that emails sent in this way are recognised as genuine by the recipient you need to include the OpenCRM server as an allowed sender for your Domain with an SPF record. 


What should I do now?

It is strongly recommended you conduct your own research and are confident about the changes required before altering your DNS records.

  • The following tools can help guide you through creating an SPF record; however, you should first ensure you understand the terminology and options available: and
  • Once you have created and set-up your SPF record you need to ensure it is working correctly. Mail Tester provides an email verification tool to test whether your SPF record is working. 
  • and will run some automated checks on your SPF record and advise of any issues they find.

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