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UN to Take First Step Towards the New Internet Governance Forum

The United Nations will launch the first round of consultations next month on creating a new Internet governance body [IGF], as agreed by delegates attending the global Net summit in Tunis last year.

The U.N., which hosted the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) in November, is welcoming all stakeholders to attend the consultations, which will take place in Geneva on Feb. 16-17, according to a statement published Jan. 11 by Swiss diplomat Markus Kummer, who had previously participated in the WSIS Working Group on Internet Governance. more

Spammers Operating Anonymously via Whois Privacy

The amount of message board spam has been escalating dramatically since mid-2005, according to experts and a search of Google shows a number of frequently recurring domains are appearing in bogus comments on message boards all over the internet.

Domains such as 888.typo7.com, e-casinoroom.com, HobbyWorkshop.com, onlinepokerment.com, TopSitesRanking.com and g4h5.com all appear in bogus postings which reference online gaming. Many of the actual sites link through to more than one established poker site. more

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India Recommends IPv6 Transition

Faced with increasing demand for Internet protocol addresses, better quality of service and security, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) today recommended a transition from the existing version of internet protocol (IPv4) to the next-generation IPv6 platform.

The regulator has proposed the setting up of a National Internet Registry (NIR) in the country, within the framework of the Asia Pacific Network Information Centre (APNIC), and the Regional Internet Registry, utilizing the existing set-up of National Internet Exchange of India (NIXI). Currently all users in India buy their Internet protocol addresses from the APNIC. more

NAF Issues Decision on George Foreman's Domain Name

The National Arbitration Forum announced today that a ruling has been issued in favor of heavyweight boxing champion and Olympic gold medalist George Foreman regarding the rights to georgeforemanenterprises.com.

George Foreman Ventures LLC, represented by Jeanine L. Gibbs of Wargo & French LLP, filed a complaint electronically with the National Arbitration Forum on November 17, 2005, asserting legal rights to the domain name georgeforemanenterprises.com. The panel found that the Web address was registered by the Respondent, "zinnia c/o Zinnia Gonzalez," on August 18, 2005, and resolved to an "under construction" web page. more

Domain Name Scammers Fined AU$2.3m

A pair of fraudsters who made millions using a domain registration scam have been ordered to pay AU$2.3m by an Australian court.

Brad Norrish and Chesley Rafferty conned victims into stumping up non-existent fees under the threat that they risked losing their domain names unless they paid up. The duo used data from domain name registrar Nominet to produce authentic-looking notices that lent credibility to the trick, the Australian reportsmore

2005: The Year the US Government Undermined the Internet

2005 will be forever seen as the year in which the US government managed to keep unilateral control of the internet, despite widespread opposition by the rest of the world.

However, while this very public spat went on, everyone failed to notice a related change that will have far greater implications for everyday internet users and for the internet itself. That change will see greater state-controlled censorship on the internet, reduce people's ability to use the internet to communicate freely, and leave expansion of the internet in the hands of the people least capable of doing the job. more

Phishing Attacks Evolved Steadily Throughout 2005 Security

Phishing attacks are continually evolving, as fraudsters develop new strategies and quickly refine them in an effort to stay a step ahead of banking customers and the security community. Here are some of the phishing trends and innovations we noted in 2005...

Open redirects became a favorite method for phishing attacks to "borrow" the URL and credibility of a trusted web site. Redirects are common on large web sites, where server side scripts are employed to redirect users to different parts of the site. more

Berlin May Get Its Own Domain

A German entrepreneur sometime next year hopes he will be able to boast, "Ich bin ein dot-Berliner."

The businessman, Dirk Krischenowski, is bidding to make his city the first in the world with its own domain name: .berlin. Berlin's businesses and citizens will flock to the domain because millions of people regard the hip European city as a part of their identities, he believes. more

Cyberspace Unity Eludes Europeans

They couldn't agree on a single constitution, and now it looks like Europeans can't agree on the best way to identify themselves on the Internet. For the first time on Wednesday, residents of the 25-nation European Union can register Internet addresses ending in ".eu". The move, which lifts .eu to the same prominence as the Web site suffixes .com, .org and .net, is intended to allow the expression of a single European identity in cyberspace. more

US Warns of Fake Net Domain Data

More than 5% of the net's most popular domains have been registered using "patently false" data, research shows.

A US congressional report into who owns .com, .net and .org domains found that many owners were hiding their true identity. The findings could mean that many websites are fronts for spammers, phishing gangs and other net criminals. more

ICANN Gives Tentative OK on '.asia' Domain

The quasi-governmental organization that oversees the Internet has tentatively approved a ".asia" Web domain to unify the Asia-Pacific community, but the group has delayed a decision on whether to move forward with a ".xxx" zone for pornography sites.

At its annual meeting this past weekend in Vancouver, British Columbia, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers took up several topics related to the global administration of the Internet, which has become a heated topic because the U.S. has insisted on maintaining oversight. more

Investigations into ICANN transparency continue

A new lobbying body calling itself the Campaign for ICANN Transparency (CFIT) has expanded its investigation into the internet overseeing organisation with a freedom of information request served on the US Department of Commerce.

The organisation has already served ICANN with a lawsuit in its home state of California claiming anti-trust abuses, and caused the EC to open an anti-competition investigation following a formal complaint. Now it hopes to discover examples of ICANN being less than truthful by requesting "materials related to discussions, memos and meetings and related contact that the government agency has had with the Internet Corporation for Assigned and Numbers (ICANN) on matters relating to the .net and .com registry agreements". more

ICANN Considers Freeing Up Single-Letter Domains

Although Internet domain names may be getting longer or more complex as Web sites creatively squeeze into the crowded ".com" address space, most single-letter names like "a.com" and "b.com" remain unused.

That may soon change as the Internet's key oversight agency considers lifting restrictions on the simplest of names. more

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