Google has just taken an extra step to protect Gmail users from eBay and PayPal phishing attempts by implementing technology called DomainKeys. With the technology, email messages sent by phishers attempting to trick unsuspecting people into giving out an eBay or PayPal password are completely blocked. In the past, Gmail has done its best to put a red label at the top of messages that it suspected were phishing attempts, which was really helpful, but there’s really no need to ever receive these messages at all.
We mentioned DomainKeys the technology behind this, and it is also the same technology that Yahoo uses to protect their mail users from phishing attempts. A quick look at the DomainKeys entry on Wikipedia found that the technology was actually designed by Mark Delany of Yahoo. It’s covered under a patent assigned to Yahoo, but it’s released under a dual license scheme as well which makes it possible for Gmail to use.
Here’s how it works. DomainKeys is essentially an email authentication system and it verifies the good senders (eBay and PayPal). If the sender can’t be verified, the message won’t be delivered to a Gmail user’s inbox. Ebay and PayPal have put in work to make this effective as well, by ensuring that all of their email messages that are sent out are signed with DomainKeys and DKIM (DomainKeys Identified Mail). This move really helps fight phishing and should mean that you won’t have to worry about giving out your PayPal or eBay password to someone out there that intends to empty out your account.