BDay For Gmail: At 20, It Starts Enforcing Strict Authentication Rules

As numerous observers have pointed out, Gmail was launched on April 1, 2004 — 20 years ago today. And it seemed so outlandish at the time — who ever heard of email users getting 1 gigabyte of storage apiece?

People may have thought it was just another April Fool's joke by Google founders Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin. 

Some April Fool's joke. The service is the world's largest, the elephant in the room, with a couple of billion users worldwide. 

If there is any Gmail-related joke, it was in February, when a fake story was circulated that Google plans to sunset Gmail this August. Google responded: “Gmail is here to stay.”

But here’s an April 1 deadline that is no joke, although it is not without its grim humor: bulk email senders have until today to authenticate their emails. Those that fail to do so may see their messages being blocked.



Google has said it will start rejecting a percentage of noncompliant traffic. Eventually, it plans to block all of it.  

Yahoo Mail is enforcing an identical policy.&nbsp And here is another non-joke: In June, Gmail will require that bulk senders have a visible one-click unsubscribe buttons on their emails going through Gmail.

Why is Google bothering with this? 

“The amount of threats is increasing, and with GenAI it will continue to accelerate,” Neil Kumaran, product lead at Google, said during a recent webinar. “This is a good opportunity to leverage great standards to increase people’s safety and also achieve clarity over the ecosystem.” 

In the meantime, we suppose birthday greetings are in order. 


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