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How Big Is the Domain Business?

John Levine When you're standing close to ICANN, the domain business may seem pretty big, but when you stand farther away, not so much. Verisign's revenues are about $1 billion/year. The .COM and .NET top-level domains together have about 150M names. The next biggest gTLDS are .ORG with 25M and .INFO with 12M. The biggest new TLDs are TOP with 2.9M and .XYZ with 1.8M, with both bloated by firesale prices. The rest are smaller, mostly much smaller. more

Challenging UDRP Awards in Federal Court: Recent Outcomes

Gerald M. Levine Challenging UDRP awards in actions under the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA) is infrequent though steady. There are currently a number of court filings in U.S. district courts that are in the early stages, most notably the ADO.com case reported on in an earlier essay and several others have either been referred to mediation (the IMI.case) or settled or discontinued. more

Why Foldering Adds Very Little Security

Steven Bellovin I keep hearing stories of people using "foldering" for covert communications. Foldering is the process of composing a message for another party, but instead of sending it as an email, you leave it in the Drafts folder. The other party then logs in to the same email account and reads the message; they can then reply via the same technique. Foldering has been used for a long time, most famously by then-CIA director David Petraeus and his biographer/lover Paula Broadwell. Why is foldering used? more

ARIN Elects First Board Member from the Caribbean

Gerard Best Regenie Fräser, the former Secretary General of a regional trade association, has been selected to serve a one-year term on the board of trustees of the American Registry of Internet Numbers (ARIN). Fraser's appointment makes her the first person from the Caribbean and the first non-white person to serve on the ARIN board. ARIN is one of five registries worldwide that coordinate Internet number resources. more

FCC Commissioner O'Rielly's Appalling Op-Ed on the ITU

Anthony Rutkowski The FCC Commissioner Michael O'Reilly's recently contributed opinion on the ITU in "The Hill" is beyond bizarre. It also sadly displays an appalling lack of knowledge of the organization and its history. I find it disturbing - as someone who held senior positions at both the FCC and the ITU and wrote the organization's history - how fundamentally ignorant an FCC Commissioner could be today of the global telecommunications ecosystem. more

The Economics of Hacking an Election

Steven Bellovin There have been many news stories of late about potential attacks on the American electoral system. Which attacks are actually serious? As always, the answer depends on economics. There are two assertions I'll make up front. First, the attacker -- any attacker -- is resource-limited. They may have vast resources, and in particular, they may have more resources than the defenders -- but they're still limited. Why? more

Traceability

Vint Cerf At a recent workshop on cybersecurity at Ditchley House sponsored by the Ditchley Foundation in the U.K., a primary topic of consideration was how to preserve the freedom and openness of the Internet while protecting against the harmful behaviors that have emerged in this global medium. That this is a significant challenge cannot be overstated... That these harmful behaviors can and do cross international boundaries only makes it more difficult to fashion effective responses. more

What's Abusive in Registering Domain Names, and the Reverse?

Gerald M. Levine The two major providers of arbitration services for adjudicating cybersquatting complaints under the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP), the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and Forum, issue daily lists of decisions. In approximately 90% of those disputes, the registrations cannot be described as anything less than mischievous in acquiring second level domains incorporating well-known or famous marks. more

Community Networks Could Help Strengthen the Caribbean Internet

Gerard Best By some estimates, only half of the world's population has internet access, leaving the other half at a sizeable competitive disadvantage. This profound connectivity gap is especially significant in the unserved and underserved areas of developing and least-developed countries. For people who live in these places, Internet connectivity is not just about the Internet. It is a lifeline that gives access to electronic commerce and telehealth services, distance learning, social and political engagement, government services... more

Internet as Non-Kinetic WMD

Anthony Rutkowski With each passing day, a new public opinion article appears or U.S. government official pronounces how the open internet is abetting some discovered catastrophic effects on our societal institutions. In just one week, the examples include increased information on FSB & GRU attacks on electoral systems and infrastructure, Trump's obliging tactical destruction of societal norms and propagation of the QAnon cult, U.S government agency officials playing "cyber security spin-the-bottle" at press conferences... more

The IPv4 Market - 2018 Mid-Year Report

Janine Goodman The number of IPv4 transactions and volume of IP addresses flowing to and from organizations in the ARIN region in the last 6 months put 2018 on track to be the most active year in the history of the IPv4 market. Nearly 25 million numbers were transferred in the first half of this year, more than doubling the volume of numbers transferred by this time last year and continuing the level of market activity in the last half of 2017 when just over 28 million numbers were transferred. more

HTTPs Interceptions Are Much More Frequent Than Previously Thought

Russ White I have written about the problems with the "little green lock" shown by browsers to indicate a web page (or site) is secure. In that article, I consider the problem of freely available certificates, and a hole in the way browsers load pages. In March of 2017, another paper was published documenting another problem with the "green lock" paradigm - the impact of HTTPS interception. more

Short Strings of Alphabet Letters in Domain Names: Random to Some, Identifiers to Others

Gerald M. Levine What is the intrinsic (as opposed to trademark) value of short string domain names? It depends, of course. Rights holders have been willing to challenge domain name registrants even if they have no actionable claim for cybersquatting... UDRP Panels have over the years, and in many cases, affirmed that short strings are "inherently valuable in themselves precisely because they are (a) short and (b) can reflect a wide range of different uses." This does not mean it is open season against rights holders for short strings, but it does mean the facts and proof of cybersquatting must be in proper alignment, and this calls for some sober thinking about the evidentiary demands of the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP). more

New Domain Conference Coming to South America - Domaining Americas

Sara Vivanco Veteran domain investor Abner Duarte from PremiumDomains.com.br is featuring a new event called Domaining Americas, to be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in October 2018. He is puting together a major domain conference for South America. The debut edition of Domaining Americas will be held at the five-star Grand Hyatt Rio De Janiero on Saturday and Sunday, October 6-7, 2018. more

ITU’s Critical Cybersecurity Role and the 2018 Plenipotentiary

Anthony Rutkowski In the rather unique world of public international law for cybersecurity, the treaty provisions of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) stand alone. They form the multilateral basis for the existence of all communication networks, internets, and services worldwide and have obtained the assent by every nation in the world. They also contain the only meaningful multilateral cybersecurity provisions that have endured over a century and a half through all manner of technological change. more

News Briefs

IETF Releases the New and Improved Internet Security Protocol, TLS 1.3

Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) has announced the official release of TLS 1.3. more

Escalating War in Yemen Dividing Country's Internet

"The latest development in Yemen's long-running civil war is playing out in the global routing table," Doug Madory reports in a blog post today from Oracle's Internet Intelligence unit. more

Google Building a Third Data Center in Singapore to Keep up With Rapid Growth in the Region

Google built its first Southeast Asia data center in Singapore back in 2011 and quickly expanded to a second building in 2015. more

Launch of .ISLAM and .HALAL TLDs Remain on Hold as per ICANN's Controversial Decision

"ICANN holds .islam, .halal in limbo despite losing case," reports Kieren McCarthy in The Register. more

Google Credits USB-Based Security Keys for Successfully Protecting Its 85000 Employees from Phishing

According to multiple sources, Google this week reported that since early 2017, it has not had any of its 85,000 plus employees phished on their work accounts. more

Russian Hackers Have Penetrated U.S. Electric Utilities

U.S. federal government officials have revealed Russian hackers have been able to gain access to the networks of electric utilities in the country, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal. more

ICANN Passes on Israel as Possible 2020 Meeting Venue Due to Escalating Iran/Israel Conflict

Tel-Aviv, Israel was rejected as a possible venue for one of ICANN's 2020 public meetings due to its proximity to the Gaza strip and the escalation of an Iran/Israel conflict. more

Neustar Announces New President and CEO Succeeding Lisa Hook

Neustar Inc. today announced that its Board of Directors have appointed Charles Gottdiener as President and Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately. more

Google's Loon Announces First Commercial Deal With Telkom Kenya to Provide Internet-by-Balloon

Google's sister-company Loon has announced its first commercial agreement with Telkom Kenya in order to deliver connectivity to the region using a network of giant balloons. more

Protests in Iraq Lead to a Two-Day Internet Shutdown by the Government

Widespread protests in Iraq against the government have lead to a state of emergency where the government has ordered disconnection of the fiber backbone of Iraq that carries traffic for most of the country. more

Google to Deploy Its First Private Trans-Atlantic Subsea Cable

Google today announced plans to launch its latest private subsea cable project dubbed Dunant. The cable will cross the Atlantic Ocean from Virginia Beach in the U.S. to the French Atlantic coast, the company says. more

Cuba Starts Providing Internet on Mobile Phones

Cuba, one of the least connected countries, has started providing internet on the mobile phones of select users as it aims to roll out the service nationwide by year-end. more

Researchers Warn Buried Internet Cables at Risk as Sea Levels Rise

The results of a study presented today at a meeting of internet network researchers depicts critical communications infrastructure could be submerged by rising seas in as soon as 15 years. more

Former ICANN Senior Vice President Kurt Pritz to be Named Chair of Whois Group

"Former ICANN senior vice president Kurt Pritz is expected to be named chair of the group tasked with reforming Whois in the post-GDPR world," reports Kevin Murphy in Domain Incite. more

ICANN Issues Notice of Breach of Registry Agreement to .Pharmacy TLD Operator

The National Association of Board of Pharmacy ("NABP"), the operator of the .Pharmacy top-level domain is in breach of its Registry Agreement with the ICANN according to a letter issued by the agency today. more

DomainTools Sued for Misusing New Zealand's .NZ Domain Name Registration Information

Domain Name Commission Limited ("DNCL"), New Zealand's overseer for the country's .NZ domain, has filed a lawsuit against the domain name service company DomainTools. more

Anti-Phishing Working Group Proposes Use of Secure Hashing to Address GDPR-Whois Debacle

The AntiPhishing Working Group (APWG) in a letter to ICANN has expressed concern that the redaction of the WHOIS data as defined by GDPR for all domains is "over-prescriptive". more

Doug Madory Reports on Shutting Down the BGP Hijack Factory

A lengthy email to the NANOG mailing list last month concerning suspicious routing activities of a company called Bitcanal initiated a concerted effort to kick a bad actor off the Internet. more

China Has Nearly 3 Times the Number of Internet Users as the US, and the Gap Will Only Widen

China has 772 million internet users, as compared to the United States currently at 292 million. While the US internet penetration has reached 89%, China is only 55% and growing fast. more

Application Fees for New gTLDs Could Be Artificially Kept High

"It's possible that application fees for new gTLDs could be artificially propped up in order to discourage gaming," reports Kevin Murphy in Domain Incite. more

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Industry Updates

Radix Releases Its Bi-Annual Premium Domain Report Covering First Half of 2018

Radix Radix has published its premium report data for the period 1st Jan to 30th June 2018. Coin.store, a developed website out of China, was the top premium registration. more

Frank Stiff Appointed Director and 2019 Board Chair Elect of the i2Coalition

i2Coalition The i2Coalition has announced that Frank Stiff, President, and Co-Founder of Cheval Capital, has been appointed to its Board of Directors, and named Chair Elect. Mr. Stiff's position as Chair Elect became effective on immediately. He will assume his role as Board Chair on January 1st, 2019 and hold the office throughout the year. Until that time, Mr. Stiff will work with current Board Chair Michele Neylon. Mr. Stiff's full term on the Board of Directors will last until 2021. more

Verisign Launches קום., a New, Generic Top-level Domain for Hebrew Speakers*

Verisign Verisign announces the launch of our phased rollout of קום. in Hebrew script. This new, Verisign-operated internationalized domain name (IDN) extension was created to help businesses and individuals connect with customers in their local language. more

i2Coalition Supports Open Internet and Multistakeholder Model in Comments to NTIA

i2Coalition The i2Coalition responded to a request for comments on International Internet policy. We appreciated the opportunity to continue our advocacy for the multistakeholder model of Internet governance and a free, open Internet. more

New .LLC Domain Landrush Period Begins July 9, General Availability Begins July 23rd

Afilias With the introduction of .LLC, Limited Liability Companies will now be able to establish Internet identities which are more closely aligned with their existing identities and branding, rather than modifying their name or brand to adapt to limited choices in more crowded TLDs. more

.au Completes Historic Transition to Afilias, 3.1M Domain Names Transferred to New Infrastructure

Afilias auDA (.au Domain Administration Ltd) and Afilias Australia are pleased to announce the successful and historic transition of more than 3.1 million .au domain names from a legacy system to all new infrastructure in Australia. more

Q1 2018 DDoS Trends Report: 58 Percent of Attacks Employed Multiple Attack Types

Verisign Verisign has released its Q1 2018 DDoS Trends Report, which represents a unique view into the attack trends unfolding online, through observations and insights derived from distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack mitigations enacted on behalf of Verisign DDoS Protection Services, and security research conducted by Verisign Security Services. more

Verisign Q1 2018 Domain Name Industry Brief: Internet Grows to 333.8 Million Domains in Q1 of 2018

Verisign Today, we released the latest issue of the Domain Name Industry Brief, which showed that the first quarter of 2018 closed with approximately 333.8 million domain name registrations across all top-level domains (TLDs), an increase of approximately 1.4 million domain name registrations, or 0.4 percent, compared to the fourth quarter of 2017. more

Top 10 Trending Keywords in .com and .net Registrations in May

Verisign With more than 300 million domain names registered globally, there are numerous examples of trending keywords reflected by domain name registrations. We have shown in the past that there is a correlation between domain name registrations and newsworthy and popular events, as well as anticipated trends. more

A Collision of Startups, Technology and Innovation by the Startup League

Radix Radix, one of the largest domain portfolio registries, announces that its program, the Startup League, supported 20 startups on its domain extensions at Collision Conference held in New Orleans, Louisiana, from 30th April to 3rd May. more

Top 10 Trending Keywords in .COM and .NET Registrations in April

Verisign With more than 300 million domain names registered globally, there are numerous examples of trending keywords reflected by domain name registrations. We have shown in the past that there is a correlation between domain name registrations and newsworthy and popular events, as well as anticipated trends. more

Leading Voices  –  From our corporate sponsors

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