Any email which we receive in our Inbox consists of three parts, namely, the envelope, the header, and the body. The envelope is something which we cannot see from any mail client or otherwise and it is also something which cannot be spoofed.
The body of the message is essentially the content of the email, the text or graphics whatever we usually read when we receive an email. The third component is the header or email header – though it is not shown directly along with the email it can be seen and it does provide some important pieces of information.
1. Double click on the email for which you want to see the header so that it opens in a new window.
2. Click on Expand icon under Options (It is available under Message ribbon menu).
3. A new pop-up window will open where you will find the Internet headers or the email headers as shown in the following figure.
Some of the useful information which can be retrieved from Email Header or Internet Header is listed below:
- Delivered-To: shows the email id to which the email has been sent
- X-Received: shows the email server IP address along with SMTP Id allocated by email service provider
- Return-Path: the email address to be used if a reply is clicked
- Received-SPF: details of the Sender Policy Framework (SPF) along with the IP address of the originating email sender
- Message-ID: a unique identifier for every email message
- Subject: The subject line of the email
- To / Cc: Emails marked in the To and Cc fields
along with Authentication-Results, DKIM-Signature, MIME-version, and some others specific to the email service providers.
It may be worthy to note that in some cases the entire email body is also present in the email header.