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A Cancerous Computer Fraud and Misuse Act

As I read through multiple postings covering the proposed Computer Fraud and Misuse Act, such as the ever-insightful writing of Rob Graham in his Obama's War on Hackers or the EFF's analysis, and the deluge of Facebook discussion threads where dozens of my security-minded friends shriek at the damage passing such an act would bring to our industry, I can't but help myself think that surely it's an early April Fools joke. more»

Wikileaks 2012, NSA 2013, NTIA Mishaps & Global Cyber Crime 2014: U.S. Exceptionalism over IG 2015?

The internet has become almost part of our daily involvement and reality is that it affects every facet of our modern lives. We are increasingly becoming dependent on the Internet, for which reason its availability, functionality, safety, stability and security are now of great and continuing concern to all of us and most importantly to US Congress, who so far has maintained stewardship over these key functions. more»

Who Is Sending Email As Your Company?

You might expect that the IT department or security team knows who's sending email using your company's domains. But for a variety of reasons these groups are often unaware of many legitimate senders -- not to mention all the bad actors. Fortunately you can get a more complete view by using DMARC's reporting features. How does it happen? Product teams managing a new product launch or customer survey hire marketing consultants and Email Service Providers (ESP)... more»

Branding with New gTLDs: The Next Marketing Frontier

New gTLDs can be an efficient way to immediately propel a registrant's online relevance and profitability. Registrants are the companies, organizations and individuals who seek to better utilize the Internet to reach their goals. Marketing Professionals acting on their behalf should understand that protection mechanisms for new gTLDs have been created by ICANN. New gTLDs are powerful and inexpensive marketing tools that have improved measures of online stability and security... more»

Software Insecurity: The Problem with the White House Cybersecurity Proposals

The White House has announced a new proposal to fix cybersecurity. Unfortunately, the positive effects will be minor at best; the real issue is not addressed. This is a serious missed opportunity by the Obama adminstration; it will expend a lot of political capital, to no real effect... The proposals focus on two things: improvements to the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act and provisions intended to encourage information sharing. At most, these will help at the margins; they'll do little to fix the underlying problems. more»

When DNSBLs Go Bad

I have often remarked that any fool can run a DNS-Based Blacklist (DNSBL) and many fools do so. Since approximately nobody uses the incompetently run black lists, they don't matter. Unfortunately, using a DNSBL requires equally little expertise, which becomes a problem when an operator wants to shut down a list. When someone sets up a mail server (which we'll call an MTA for Mail Transfer Agent), one of the tasks is to configure the anti-spam features, which invariably involves using DNSBLs. more»

.brands - Nobody Said It Was Easy

I've got enormous respect and admiration for the passionate individuals who are still championing .brands for their organisations in the new Top-Level Domain (TLD) program. I have the pleasure of assisting quite a few of these on a daily basis and I'm sure their experiences aren't isolated with other applicants across the globe. Put yourself in their shoes. Delays, some stupid process called Digital Archery, GAC Advice, names collisions and negative media... more»

New gTLDs Show Promising SEO Performance

With the arrival of hundreds of new generic top-level domains (gTLDs), many marketers are excited that they can now get a web address that best describes their business or brand. For instance, a company in the organic business can now get a web address on .ORGANIC, or a brand that's all about passion and excitement can now get on .RED, etc. At the same time, many are also asking some important SEO related questions. more»

2014 Domain Name Year in Review

It's hard to believe that another year has come and gone and that I'm now publishing my 5th Annual Domain Name Year in Review. It's sort of fun to look back 5 years ago to see how much things have changed, especially as focus has shifted to issues related to the launch and use of new gTLDs. Of course, much has stayed the same too. Concerns related to domain name security and domain portfolio management are still important. more»

Time to Spread the Muck, ICANN

"Money is like muck, not good except it be spread", according to English philosopher Francis Bacon. In these times when everyone is busy with the big questions surrounding the IANA transition and ICANN accountability, I thought we could quickly solve some simple questions. One of them is: What should ICANN do with all that money? What money, you might ask? more»

The Christmas Goat and IPv6 (Year 5)

This year I didn't even get a good picture of our famous Christmas goat here in the city of Gavle Sweden. The Christmas goat this year survived Christmas but were suddenly on the 28th of December dismounted. The reason for the poor goat's early leave from its own little park downtown Gavle is that it is now the year of the goat in China, and the city of Gavle has a sister-town in China -- Zhuhai. more»

Mega Hacks and the Employees That Lost

When a business gets hacked and its corporate information is dumped on the Internet for all and sundry to see (albeit illegally), the effects of that breach are obviously devastating for all concerned. In many ways it's like the day after a fierce storm has driven a super-cargo container ship aground and beachcombers from far and wide have descended upon the ruptured carcass of metal to cart away anything they think has value or can be sold by the side of road. more»

Domain Name Case Under ACPA Failed Because Trademark Was Not Distinctive

The federal Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA) [15 U.S.C. 1125(d)] is a provision in U.S. law that gives trademark owners a cause of action against one who has wrongfully registered a domain name. In general, the ACPA gives rights to owners of trademarks that are either distinctive or famous at the time the defendant registered the offending domain name. The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals recently affirmed the decision of a lower court that dismissed an ACPA claim... more»

I Spoke to a .TAXI Driver

Last week I took a Cab on my way back from the Montparnasse Station in Paris. My wife had ordered a Taxi and it was waiting for us at the Taxi station. We had ordered it because we arrived late in Paris that night. Surprisingly, the Cab was a black Limousine with no Taxi sign on its top and the driver, who wore a costume, was gentle and polite. If you ever took a Taxi in Paris, you probably know why I am adding this to this paragraph. more»

Civil Society Cautions Against ICANN Giving Governments Veto Over Geographic Domain Names

A group of twenty-four civil society organizations and individuals today submitted a joint statement regarding a proposal from an ICANN Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC) sub-group on the use of "geographic names" in top-level domains. The joint civil society statement cautioned against the adoption of the GAC proposal that would give governments veto power on domains that use "geographic names." more»

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Branding with New gTLDs: The Next Marketing Frontier

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