#MarketersUnite: Join the Fight Against Email Fraud

 Liz Dennison 

On August 12, Anne Payton, Senior Security Engineer at Delta Airlines, joined me and Matt Moorehead, Strategic Project Manager at Return Path, in a webinar to talk about why marketers need to unite with security professionals against email fraud.

Most marketers may think that email fraud is their security team’s problem, not theirs. But according to Anne, there are many reasons why marketing needs to join the fight against email fraud. As owners of the email channel, marketers have a responsibility to help protect it.

Here are three key best practices for marketers to get involved:

1. Raise awareness with top marketing executives
CMOs today have a duty to be security conscious. With the rate of cyber attacks increasing, all reputable marketing organizations need to make brand protection a priority. CMOs might only have a vague understanding of security risks, but they do have a good understanding of impact in real dollars.

“You’ll want to be able to explain how [email fraud] will impact your revenue, your market share, and your partnership opportunities,” Anne says.

What’s the best way to explain that impact? Reveal the risks and impact of email fraud.

Loss of customer engagement with your brand is the greatest risk. Research by Cloudmark suggests that customers are 42% less likely to interact with your brand after being phished or spoofed. This will impact your email marketing programs significantly.

“All of the work you put into crafting an effective message or campaign is wasted if people refuse to open what you’re sending them” Anne says.

The impact of lost customer trust is simple: loss in revenue. Make sure your CMO understands the impact of email fraud on your legitimate programs, and on your ability to drive revenue contribution.

2. Educate your customers
There are a number of proactive steps marketing can take to educate customers about email fraud. You can create websites that post warnings about potential scams, and reveal what legitimate communications and accounts look like, so users know to spot fraudulent emails.

You can also show tips in your legitimate email and direct mail campaigns saying how you’ll never ask for personal information in unsolicited notes.

Anne adds, “Fraudsters are sophisticated, and you can’t solely rely your customers to read your advice and be on the lookout for malicious email all the time.”

3. Collaborate with security
It’s imperative for marketers to collaborate with security teams to help get visibility into who is sending what email and from where.

Help them find out who is responsible for:

  1. Registering your company domains.
  2. Updating email records and technical records.
  3. Updating your email authentication policy.

Mapping your email infrastructure is a critical first step. “You’d be surprised how many different groups in your company are sending things for different purposes with many with different [third party] vendors,” says Anne.

“Find the person in your organization who is the bridge between the marketing groups and the technical groups who are managing the email controls,” Anne says.

Want to hear the full webinar recording? Check it out here.

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About Liz Dennison

Liz is the Content Marketing Manager for Return Path's Email Fraud Protection team. She loves creating engaging content that empowers companies to protect their customers and their brands against cybercriminals. Follow her at @lizkoneill.

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