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Google Claims It Fixed the Security Holes the CIA Exploited

WikiLeaks shook the internet again on March 7, 2017, by posting several thousand documents containing information about the tools the CIA allegedly used to hack, among others, Android and iOS devices. These classified files were obtained from the CIA's Center for Cyber Intelligence, although they haven't yet been verified and a CIA official declined to comment on this incident. This isn't the first time that the U.S. government agencies were accused of crossing the line and undermining online security and civil liberties, as it's been only a year since the infamous FBI-Apple encryption dispute. It's like "1984" all over again. more»

Universal Acceptance of New Top-Level Domains Reloaded

One challenge for all new top-level domains (TLDs) is the so-called Universal Acceptance. Universal Acceptance is a phenomenon as old as TLDs exist and may strike at many occasions... The effect when universal acceptance hits you is that you cannot send or receive email, get error messages or even worse when it looks like everything works but it does not and you do not even get a notification. more»

And the Wait Continues for .Corp, .Home and .Mail Applicants

On 6 March 2017, ICANN's GDD finally responded to an applicant letter written on 14 August 2016 to the ICANN Board. This was not a response from the ICANN Board to the letter from 2016 but a response from ICANN staff. The content of this letter can best be described as a Null Response. It reminded the applicants that the Board had put the names on hold and was still thinking about what to do. more»

The Internet as Weapon

One of the most striking and enduring dichotomies in the conceptualization of electronic communication networks is summed up in the phrase "the Internet as weapon." With each passing day, it seems that the strident divergence plays in the press -- the latest being Tim's lament about his "web" vision being somehow perverted. The irony is that the three challenges he identified would have been better met if he had instead pursued a career at the Little Theatre of Geneva and let SGML proceed to be implemented on OSI internets rather than refactoring it as HTML to run on DARPA internets. more»

Latest Movers and Shakers in the World of Dot Brands

There are now well over 100 brands actively using their new dot brand domains to promote their goods and services. The latest release of the Dot Brand Observatory, which is now a complimentary resource, produced by dotStories in collaboration with Verisign and Valideus paints a picture of a vibrant market that is developing significantly. more»

The Internet's Gilded Age

The rise of the Internet has heralded rapid changes in our society. The opportunities presented by a capable and ubiquitous communications system and a global transportation network have taken some corporations from the multinational to the status of truly global mega-corporation. Good examples of these new corporations include Google, Apple, Amazon, Microsoft and Facebook. There are a handful of large-scale winners in this space and many losers. But this is not the first time we've witnessed a period of rapid technological and social change. more»

Three Generations of Cuban WiFi Hotspot Sharing

As soon as ETECSA began installing public access WiFi hotspots, black market resellers began sharing connections. They would connect a laptop to an ETECSA account then use pirated copies of Connectify, a connection sharing program running on the laptop, to create small WiFi hotspots of their own. At the time, ETECSA charged 2 CUC per hour online (two day's pay for many Cubans) and the re-sellers typically charged 1 CUC per hour. They broke even with two users and made a profit with more. more»

Draft 0.5 of the New gTLD Applicant Guidebook

We all remember the nightmare of following the multiple versions of the "AGB" from the ICANN new gTLD program, and the time it took to get to the final version, which then took to allowing applicants to submit their new gTLD application, and which then took them to wait for their application to proceed... Welcome to version 0.5 of the next Applicant Guidebook. more»

Early Disclosure of UDRP Complaints

Under the previous rules for the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP), domain name registrants that had a complaint filed against them were supposed to be notified of the complaint by the trademark owner that filed it. Then, a revised set of UDRP rules that went into effect in 2015 eliminated the complainant's obligation to notify the respondent. Instead, the new rules only require the UDRP service provider (such as WIPO or the Forum) notify the respondent, presumably after the registrar has locked the domain name, preventing any transfers. more»

ICANN 58 Copenhagen: What to Expect

I don't know much about Copenhagen, except that Princess Mary of Denmark is really 'our' Princess Mary from Tasmania, Australia. The other thing I know is that it will be really cold. In terms of the ICANN meeting, there continues to be an element of dismay over the scheduling for this meeting, most notably reflected in a letter to ICANN's CEO from the GNSO Commercial Stakeholder Group. While it's good to get these issues on the table ... community should take ownership... more»

WikiLeaks' Vault 7: CIA Gives a Free Lesson in Personal Cyber Security

WikiLeaks' newly released Vault 7 trove is a tantalizing study in how one of the world's premiere intelligence agencies hacks devices. Analysts and experts have signaled that this leak appears authentic based on some clues in the content. But while it may ultimately be comparable in size to the Snowden or Manning leaks, it lacks the "wow" factor that made those landmark whistleblowing cases so important. What lessons are to be learned from the leaks, and how should we apply them to our personal digital lives? more»

Agriculture At High-Speed: Project Updates on Bridging California's Rural/Urban Digital Divide

When farms are connected to the Internet, we all benefit. Agriculture that gains real-time information about plants, soil, atmosphere, and irrigation, dubbed "precision agriculture", can save farmers 20-30% of their water consumption while increasing productivity by 20-70%, according to Valley Vision. The San Francisco-Bay Area Internet Society Chapter is pleased to announce that we have started phase one of our collaborative project, "Bridging California's Rural/Urban Digital Divide with Mobile Broadband"... more»

Wikileaks, the CIA, and the Press

As you've probably read, WikiLeaks has released a trove of purported CIA documents describing their hacking tools. There's a lot more that will be learned, as people work their way through the documents. For now, though, I want to focus on something that's being misreported, possibly because of deliberately misleading text by WikiLeaks itself. Here's the text from WikiLeaks... more»

Work in Progress: Preparing the Next Round of New gTLDs

There are now more than a thousand new Internet suffixes alongside "the originals" (not talking vampires here, but rather .COM et al). These additional web address endings are called "new gTLDs". Since Internet technical coordinator ICANN's 2012 call for applications for the creation of new gTLDs, and their roll-out starting in 2014 when suffixes such as .BARCLAYS (brand TLD), .NYC (geo TLD) and .SKI (generic TLD) became active, the question of another round of applications has been asked repeatedly. more»

Three Layers of China's International Strategy on Cyberspace

China's newly released International Strategy on Cyberspace is marked by three distinctive layers with different degree of priority: (1) sovereignty (or cybersecurity, or UN Charter), (2) globalization (or digital economy, or WTO rules), and (3) fundamental freedoms (or human rights, or UDHR). The good point of the strategy is that it tries to make the three layers peacefully co-exist in one document. The failure, however, lies in the intentional ranking of relevance/importance of the three layers... more»

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