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Placing a Stake in the Ground on Domain Security

25 years ago, with the dawn of the .com domain, no one could have predicted the impact that this thing called "the Internet" would have on the world. Its flexible all-access ecosystem has allowed it to become the largest information sharing network the world has ever seen.

With more than 2 billion people online and billions more poised to come online in the coming years — the Internet continues to break down barriers and to positively transform the political, economic and social landscape for people in every corner of the globe.

Yet just when people have finally gotten comfortable transacting business, sharing content and socializing online, we are seeing an ever-increasing amount of malicious behavior and illicit activity, making Internet security a major and growing concern.

This is why domain name providers need to be proactive and ensure that they are offering systems and support to stop domain abuse. It is critical to the future of the Internet that we continue to find ways of combating illicit and malicious activities, and to work together to create an Internet that is safe, secure and stable.

Security software provider McAfee produces an annual report called Mapping the Mal Web: The world's riskiest domains. We applaud the report's authors for their efforts in raising awareness of the nature of security risks faced by Internet users.

This year, .CO's risk assessment increased from 68th to 36th, in comparison to other top level domain names. This is by no means a high risk ranking in the context of the report (in fact it's quite low in comparison with some of the larger registries, like .com, which was deemed to be the #1 riskiest of all the domain extensions cited in the report), but still higher than we were ranked last year. Let's take a closer look at why that may be.

.CO has gone through a radical transformation in the past 12 months. We've evolved from being a purely country focused domain to one that offers new online opportunities to anyone in the world — and we've been very successful in undertaking this transformation, with over 560,000 new domain registrations in almost 200 countries being realized in just the three short months since our launch.

Along with the many hundreds of thousands of legitimate domain registrations inevitably will come a few bad apples. That does not please us, but unfortunately, we are facing an industry-wide issue. What's important is what we are doing to address malicious behavior — and to ensure for the safety and security of registrants and users of .CO domains.

You can rest assured that at the .CO Registry, we aggressively monitor usage in order to rapidly address potential security concerns. Leveraging the industry-leading security monitoring labs of Neustar, our back-end registry services provider, we are able to gain early warnings about potential malicious usage of a domain, and to take action when your safety and security are at risk.

We are fully committed to ensuring that the .CO domain is the premier global web address of choice for secure Internet commerce and 21st century innovation. Among other things, we have priced .CO at a premium to discourage mass speculation and to encourage development by entrepreneurs, business owners and other credible registrants who will use the domain for value-building purposes.

We are putting a stake in the ground on the topic of security, and we intend to lead the industry in this regard. In the coming days, we will be making an announcement relating to our approach to domain security that will further minimize the risk of illicit behavior on .CO domains, enhancing our ability to take swift and decisive action to protect your security — and to ensure for the integrity of the entire name space.

We'll be reporting more on this in the days and weeks ahead. We welcome any discussions around the topic of security and the prevention of domain name abuse, and would like to open a dialogue across the industry to encourage a proactive discussion and approach on this issue.

We're always looking to find ways to innovate on security and we invite you to share your thoughts and ideas with us!

About .CO Internet

.CO Internet

.CO Internet S.A.S. is the Registry Operator for the .CO top-level domain. Short, memorable and credible, .CO is the hot, new ending for web addresses all over the world. From start-ups and small businesses to big brands and multinational corporations, .CO is increasingly becoming the web address of choice for innovators and entrepreneurs across the globe. Please visit http://www.COinternet.co and http://www.go.co for more information. You can also follow us on Twitter @dotCO and at Facebook.com/dotCO. (Learn More)

Related topics: DNS, Domain Names, Registry Services, Security, Top-Level Domains

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