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Antispam Confab Looks Beyond Filters

The fight against spam, phishing and e-mail fraud should focus on economic incentives and aiding law enforcement, according to attendees at a conference examining the problem this week.

Speakers at MIT's 2006 Spam Conference were notably cognizant of the recent proposals of white lists and AOL's Goodmail, a pay per e-mail service offering preferential treatment in e-mail delivery for marketers. It is also one year since the implementation of Can-Spam, the federal law that sets e-mail marketing standards and makes it less complicated for law enforcement to go after John Doe spammers. more»

DNS Hackers Target Domain Registrars

Hackers have launched distributed denial of service attacks against the Domain Name System (DNS) servers of a brace of domain name registrars over recent days. The motive for the separate attacks against VeriSign and Joker.com remains unclear.

VeriSign said the attack on its name servers caused a "brief degradation" in the quality of its service to customers for around 25 minutes on Tuesday afternoon, ComputerWorld reports. Domain registrar Joker.com is recovering from an attack on its name servers last week that lasted for six days up until last Sunday. Joker.com, which is based in Germany, handles the registration of approximately 550,000 domains. more»

New Code of Practice to Combat Spam

Australia has cracked down on junk mail with an industry code for tackling spam.

Under the new code, internet service providers (ISPs) will bear some of the responsibility for helping fight spam. Service providers must offer spam-filtering options to their subscribers and advise them on how to best deal with and report the nuisance mail. ISPs will also be compelled to impose "reasonable" limits on subscribers' sending email. more»

Cybersquatters Try New Tactics: Soft Squatting

Cybersquatting the domain name of a celebrity and selling it for a king's ransom was one of the great get-rich-quick schemes of the early internet. But since courts now tend to favor the star over the squatter, a new kinder, gentler cybersquatting tactic has emerged.

These days, cybersquatters seek to register a star's domain before that person becomes famous, and then develop a business relationship with the new celebrity, offering website hosting or design work. These so-called soft squatters are registering the domains of hundreds of amateur athletes, musicians and other would-be stars in the hope that one or two of the names will become well-known. more»

ICANN Tackles Future of Internet

Amid brewing controversies, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers' 25th International meeting officially opened on Monday in Wellington, New Zealand. The meeting, which runs through March 31, brings together members from the technical community, business and government to discuss the management and future of the Internet.

But some members of ICANN have made it clear that they don't like the way the organization is conducting business, saying that ICANN is more concerned about wooing big business and government than serving ordinary Internet users. more»

Who Owns the Internet? See This Map

What is this ball of colors? It is the North American Internet, or more specifically a map of just about every router on the North American backbone, (there are 134,855 of them for those who are counting). The colors represent who each router is registered to. Red is Verizon; blue AT&T; yellow Qwest; green is major backbone players like Level 3 and Sprint Nextel; black is the entire cable industry put together; and gray is everyone else, from small telecommunications companies to large international players who only have a small presence in the U.S. more»

DNS Servers Do Hackers' Dirty Work

"DNS is now a major vector for DDOS," Dan Kaminsky, a security researcher said, referring to distributed denial-of-service attacks. "The bar has been lowered. People with fewer resources can now launch potentially crippling attacks."

Just as in any DDOS attack, the target system -- which could be a victim's Web server, name server or mail server -- is inundated with a multitude of data coming from multiple systems on the Internet. The goal is to make the target unreachable online by flooding the data connection or by crashing it as it tries to handle the incoming data.  more»

IPv6 Reported to Lower Internet Users' Privacy

Billed as the next generation of the Internet, a new technical standard enthusiastically embraced by China will allow greater traceability of Internet users, potentially endangering those expressing views counter to the government's.

The standard, known as IPv6, solves technical problems faced by the Internet around the world, but Internet freedom advocates outside China warn that the internationally developed norm would also allow Beijing authorities -- or any government or company for that matter -- to have a better idea of what individuals are doing on the Internet. more»

Coalition Recommends Tools to Combat Phishing

ISPs and e-commerce sites can employ more tools to combat phishing scams, including "white lists" of legitimate Websites and using false identification information to scam the scammers, according to a report released Thursday.

The report, released by a coalition of consumer groups, technology vendors, financial services organizations and law enforcement agencies, also calls on Internet companies to step up their consumer education efforts. more»

Date Set for First Meeting of the Internet Governance Forum

A date has been set for the first meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF): Monday 30 October to Thursday 2 November in Athens, Greece.

At the same time, the United Nations has announced a 40-strong body made up of representatives from governments, private sector, civil society and the academic and technical communities to decide on how the meeting will be run and what it will discuss. more»

Two U.S. Senators Propose Confining Adult Sites to .XXX

U.S. senators proposed legislation that would establish a new ".XXX" domain for racy or sexually explicit websites.

The bill proposed by senators Mark Pryor and Max Baucus, both Democrats, calls upon the US Department of Commerce to exclude sexually charged content from established website domain names such as .gov, .com, .org, .net, and .edu.

Bonus Links:
ICM Registry's Response on the Issue
More from CNET News more»

VeriSign Speaks About the .com Agreement

This is a debate that will make plenty of money for Washington lobbyists for years to come.

But there is less talk about another infrastructure issue that could also have a major effect on the Internet. This issue is whether the .com domain name will remain reliable and secure. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the body that manages the technical aspects of the Internet, has decided to allow the cost of .com domain names to increase by a little less than $2 over the next five years. The additional funds will allow more investment in managing and protecting the .com domain. more»

Registrars Urge Rejection of VeriSign's .com Deal

Nineteen internet companies, including Network Solutions, have asked ICANN's Board of Directors to reconsider a controversial agreement giving VeriSign control of the .com top-level domain until 2012.

Domain name registrar GoDaddy has also petitioned the US Department of Commerce, which has yet to approve the agreement, asking that the deal be sent back to the ICANN Board. more»

ICANN to Test Non-English TLDs

The Internet's key oversight agency has outlined a plan for testing domain names entirely in non-English characters, bringing closer to reality a change highly sought by Asian and Arabic Internet users.

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers announced a tentative timetable Tuesday that calls for tests to begin in the second half of the year. The tests would help ensure that introducing non-English suffixes wouldn't wreck a global addressing system that millions of Internet users rely upon every day. more»

Reinventing the Internet

New initiatives aim to overhaul the internet. But how can a "clean slate" redesign ever be implemented? If a planet-wide data network, akin to the internet, were built on Mars, what would it look like? That might sound like a silly question, but it raises an important point. The design of computer networks is constrained by the need to be compatible with the internet and other systems that have grown up over the past four decades. What if network designers could start again with a clean slate, unencumbered by today's messy reality? more»

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