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Should Domain Names be Considered 'Contracts for Service' or 'Property Rights'?

The legal status of domain names is one of the most hotly debated topics with regards to evolving property rights and how they should be applied to technological and intellectual property 'innovations' in cyberspace. At present, there are two opposing factions on this topic: On one hand, there are those who maintain that domain names should be considered as contracts for services, which originate from the contractual agreement between the registrant and the registrar. more

Essential Cyber Security Steps for Your Business

Layered security is a concept that's important for anyone who wants to create a strong, successful defense strategy to understand. This is a strategy that relies on the use of multiple lines of defense in an attempt to repel any potential attacks. For this reason, it's based on the principle that says "no single form of protection is enough to stop a determined cybercriminal. more

When the Backend Domain Name Registry Is Too Expensive

What we call a "backend registry" is the mandatory technical platform to operate a domain name extension and all registries have one. It is the backend registry that allows accredited registrars to technically sell domain names for each top-level domain (TLD). The question here is: what happens to a registry, who sells domain names to accredited registrars when his backend registry solution provider is too expensive? more

Will Cisco Make a Comeback in Cuba?

Is the recently announced Cisco Networking Academy at the Universidad de Ciencias Informáticas a belated drop in the bucket or the first step in a significant opening? Cisco dominated the infrastructure equipment market in Cuba and elsewhere during the early days of the Internet, but Huawei replaced them in Cuba... What does this mean? It might be a belated drop in the bucket. UCI has only 19 trained CNA instructors while the CNA curriculum is being taught by over 20,000 instructors at over 10,000 institutions. more

Internet Evolution: Another 10 Years Later

Ten years ago, I wrote an article that looked back on the developments within the Internet over the period from 1998 to 2008. Well, another ten years have gone by, and it's a good opportunity to take a little time once more to muse over what's new, what's old and what's been forgotten in another decade of the Internet's evolution... The evolutionary path of any technology can often take strange and unanticipated turns and twists. more

It's About Whois Display And Access

The need for an access model for non-public Whois data has been apparent since GDPR became a major issue before the community well over a year ago. Now is the time to address it seriously, and not with half measures. We urgently need a temporary model for access to non-public Whois data for legitimate uses, while the community undertakes longer-term policy development efforts. more

Live On Monday, 25 June - DNSSEC Workshop at ICANN 62 in Panama

With the DNSSEC Root Key Rollover coming up on October 11, how prepared are we as an industry? What kind of data can we collect in preparation? What is the cost-benefit (or not) of implementing DANE? What can we learn from an existing rollover of a cryptographic algorithm? All those questions and more will be discussed at the DNSSEC Workshop at the ICANN 62 meeting in Panama City, Panama, on Monday, June 25, 2018. more

Access to Safe and Affordable Prescription Medications Online is a Human Right

I recently served on a panel at the Toronto RightsCon 2018 conference (Making Safe Online Access to Affordable Medication Real: Addressing the UN Human Rights resolution for access to essential medicines), where I represented the perspective of Americans struggling to afford their daily medications and desperate to have safe, affordable Internet access to their prescriptions. more

Why You Must Learn to Love DNSSEC

It's been nearly two months since the high profile BGP hijack attack against MyEtherwallet, where crypto thieves used BGP leaks to hijack MEW's name servers, which were on Amazon's Route53, and inserted their own fake name servers which directed victims to their own fake wallet site, thereby draining some people's wallets. It generated a lot of discussion at the time... What isn't fully appreciated is that attack has, in fact, changed the game somewhat... more

Heading Into Panama for ICANN62

Well amazingly, it's that time again. Next week, individuals from around the world with a keen interest in Internet policy will head to Panama City, Panama for the second ICANN meeting of the year. As always, Brandsight will be attending to follow all of the important policy work being carried out by the community. Before I head off to the meeting (which based on my research will actually be my 32nd ICANN meeting!), I'd like to share a preview of the major topics slated for discussion. more

Opting for UDRP Over URS

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) implemented the Uniform Rapid Suspension System (URS) in 2013 together with three other rights protection mechanisms for trademarks. It "is not intended for use in any proceedings with open questions of fact, but only clear cases of trademark abuse"... It was designed to afford rights holders claiming abusive registration of domain names with new gTLD extensions an even faster route to remedy than the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP). more

Google Engineer Ben McIlwain on Why HSTS Could Be a Perfect Fit for .Brands Security

The Google-run .app TLD was always destined to draw attention and scrutiny, from the moment it fetched a then-record ICANN auction price of $25 million. Since it reached General Availability in May it has gained more than 250,000 registrations making it one of the world's most successful TLDs. However perhaps more interesting was Google's choice to add the .app TLD and its widely used .google extension to the HTTP Strict Transport Security (HSTS) Top-Level Domain preload list, offering an unprecedented level of security for all domains under .google and .app. more

When the Internet Service Provider is Government-Owned Monopoly: Cuba's Forthcoming 3G Pricing Model

Jorge Luis Valdés Hernández, Director de Servicios Convergentes de la Vicepresidencia de Integración Comercial de ETECSA, described the forthcoming changes to their mobile Internet service in a recent press conference. (He also has a very long job title). To be honest, the press conference coverage left me a bit confused, but this is some of what he said as I understood it. more

EURODIG Tbilisi 2018: Positioning in the New Complexity of the Global Internet Governance Ecosystem

Early June 2018 the European Internet community traveled into the Caucasian Mountains to participate in EURODIG 11. On its way into the digital age, Europe is, as EU Commissioner Mariya Gabriel said, at another crossroad. In cyberspace, Europe risks becoming sandwiched between US and Chinese Cyberpower policies. Social networks, search engines, smartphones, eTrade platforms - key sectors of today's digital economy - are dominated both by the US and Chinese giants: Alibaba and Amazon, Google and Baidu, Facebook and Weibo, Apple and Huawai. more

ICANN vs EPAG: ICANN Seeks Appeal Plus Pushes for ECJ Referral

As I predicted ICANN is pursuing its case against EPAG. They're now not only appealing the case to a higher court in Germany but are also trying to get the entire thing referred to the European Court of Justice. In an announcement late last night ICANN made it very clear what their intentions are. While they're pursuing the appeal in the higher court in the German region, which makes sense at some level, it's also very clear that they're not taking "no" for an answer. more

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