IT Knowledge BaseGeneral TopicsFaculty/Staff Email Overview of Office 365 Email What do these [External] email tags and banners mean?

What do these [External] email tags and banners mean?

This article will cover the different markers you might see on an email sent from outside the CSUF campus email system.

Why tag emails?

Most email scams begin with messages from outside of our organization. To help protect users from phishing attacks, CSUF has implemented email tags to provide an additional level of security by identifying email origins.

Not all external emails are suspicious. They could be coming from from another organization, someone's personal account, a vendor, or another trusted source. Always confirm the authenticity of the sender before opening any links or downloading attachments.

Emails from External Campus Partners

An external campus partner is an institution or service provider with which CSUF has an institutional partnership, such as Dropbox, Qualtrics, Zoom, etc. Emails from external campus partners are identified at the top of the body of the email with a blue banner.

Screenshot of email from Dropbox with blue CSUF external service banner

A. Check the top of the message body for a blue banner indicating the email is from a CSUF external service. The reader should proceed with caution and confirm sender before proceeding.

Emails from External Senders

An external sender is an account that is not an official campus email account and is not an external campus partner account. Emails from external senders are identified with the [External] tag added to the beginning of the subject line and an orange banner at the top of the body of the email.

Screenshot of email from non-CSUF conference organizer with orange external sender banner

A. Note the [External] tag at the beginning of the subject line.
B. Check the top of the message body for an orange banner indicating the email is from an external source. The reader should proceed with caution and confirm sender before proceeding.

Need More Help?

For more information about email security, view the chapter on Spear Phishing.

To find out how to report a suspicious message, you can view Report a Phishing Email with PhishAlarm.

Faculty & Staff:

Contact the IT Help Desk at [email protected] or 657-278-7777.

Students:

Contact the Student IT Help Desk at [email protected] or 657-278-8888.