Using an SPF Record to Prevent Spam

Particularly in business, it is important to prevent spam from being sent from your mailboxes. You can add an SPF record to your 1&1 IONOS domain to effectively prevent unauthorized sending of emails. It defines that only 1&1 IONOS mail servers are authorized to send emails. Any attempt to deliver emails from another mail server either fails or causes these emails to be considered suspicious and sent to the spam folder.

You can add an SPF record in your domain's DNS settings. 1&1 IONOS has simplified the process so that you do not have to enter the information yourself: All you have to do is enable the 1&1 IONOS mail server (SPF record) item under MX Records. You can choose between two options:

  • If you choose soft fail, all emails are delivered to the recipient. However, all emails that do not originate from 1&1 IONOS mail servers are automatically marked as suspicious and sent to the recipient's spam folder.
    The soft fail record contains an ~all command, as in this example:
    v=spf1 ~all
  • If you choose hard fail, the recipient receives only emails that were sent from 1&1 IONOS mail servers. All emails from other mail servers are not delivered.
    The hard fail record contains an -all command, as in this example:
    v=spf1 -all

If you choose one of the two options, the recipient's mail server checks if the received email comes from an authorized mail server. The mail server does this by comparing the sender information with what is entered in the SPF record. If the information is the same, the email will be delivered. If the information is not the same, the emails are handled as specified in the SPF record.

To access your DNS settings and enter the records, click the Set an SPF Record link below. This takes you directly to your domain's DNS Settings page. Click Add record and select the SPF(TXT) option. Enter the Host Name and then select a Weight and TTL. Do not forget to Save your settings.