CATEGORY: DeliverabilityKnowledge hub
BIMI – update January 2022
Brand Indicators for Message Identification or BIMI (pronounced: Bih-mee) is an emerging email specification that enables the use of brand-controlled logos within supporting email clients. BIMI leverages the work an organisation has put into deploying DMARC protection, by bringing brand logos to the customer’s inbox.
For the brand’s logo to be displayed, the email must pass DMARC authentication checks, ensuring that the organisation’s domain has not been impersonated. (source: https://bimigroup.org)
It is a new effort to standardise the adoption by ISPs of the display of senders’ logos next to their email in browser inboxes.
Although some mail providers have included a logo for a while, (e.g., https://en.gravatar.com/), BIMI, is trying to create a standard that will not only display a logo but would also help fight spam and phishing by enforcing DMARC for authentication of Sending Domains.
It takes a long time to implement standards across the board and the adoption is usually not consistent which creates confusion in the industry and amongst consumers. However, we do recommend, simply as a best practice recommendation, to put all the ingredients in place and be ready for implementation by the various ISPs.
As an e-shot client we make sure that all our clients adhere to the following BIMI conditions:
1. Apply SPF (Sender Policy Framework) and DKIM (DomainKeys Identified Mail) authentication
2. Implement DMARC with a restrictive "p=reject" policy
Other conditions that you can implement yourself:
3. Create the BIMI logo file
The BIMI file must be created adhering to the BIMI specification. You can find help in https://bimigroup.org/svg-conversion-tools-released/
Make the SVG file available from a public facing URL
Publish a BIMI record in you DNS. We can help with this if we look after your DNS
4. Gmail and Fastmail condition to display BIMI, as well as ALL the above conditions, is to have a Verified Mark Certificate (VMC) which requires that your logo is officially trademarked, and you will need to go to DigiCert or Entrust, the trusted certification authorities to register a VMC with them. Please note that this service is chargeable (annually). You can find more information here https://www.digicert.com/blog/qualify-for-a-vmc-how-to-trademark-your-logo
Check who implemented BIMI
You can use this free tool https://www.kbxscore.com/bimi.cgi. You can try it with e-shot.net (no VMC) and CNN.com (with VMC).
Which of the major ISPs support BIMI?
Google’s Gmail - does support BIMI but requires VMC (https://cloud.google.com/blog/products/identity-security/bringing-bimi-to-gmail-in-google-workspace)
Yahoo, AOL, Verizon - support BIMI. Does not require VMC but only applies to major brands that send to a large number of recipients AND have good reputation and engagement (https://developer.yahooinc.com/mail/bimi/)
Fastmail supports BIMI with VMC
Microsoft (Outlook and Hotmail) do not support BIMI. They considered a competing system called ‘brand cards’, but there is not much more information regarding this. You can try https://www.bing.com/bp/signup and read some reference to the brand cards here https://office365itpros.com/2018/12/06/email-company-logos-office365/
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