Home / Industry

The Root DNSSEC Deployment and Dyn, Inc.

Back in January 1997, a group of people developed RFC 2065, Domain Name System Security Extensions, a document detailing the introduction of private/public key cryptography into the public DNS system. By adding cryptography to the DNS, users would be able to verify that DNS responses they receive are genuinely valid and accurate. The design of DNSSEC was updated in March 2005 by RFC 2535 but was never deployed.

In March 2005, RFCs 4033, 4034, 4035 were published, detailing a new version of the protocol named DNSSEC.bis. This version of the protocol is easier to understand and deploy, but was never widely paid attention to until the summer of 2008. Those of us in the industry knew that DNSSEC was important, but the operational management, increased query size, and technical problems with many implementations of DNS prevented it from being deployed.

The "DNS Summer of Fear" occurred in 2008, when security researcher Dan Kaminsky exposed a vulnerability in the DNS protocol where DNS cache poisoning could be achieved in just a few seconds allowing an attacker to spoof the DNS identify of a website. A short term fix, known as DNS Source Port Randomization, was deployed to help fend off attacks, while movement on a long term solution began work. The long term fix requires the use of DNSSEC to securely sign and validate the global DNS system, and with all things DNS, starts with the security of the DNS Root Zone, a.k.a ".".

The DNS Root Zone is produced and maintained through a collaborate effort between ICANN, VeriSign, and the U.S. Department of Commerce. These three organizations have been extensively working to develop a secure and transparent way to manage the signing of the Root Zone since early 2009, and on July 15, 2010, the fruits of their labor will become reality when the signed root is deployed.

On June 16, 2010, the first of two Root Key Signing Key (KSK) generation ceremonies was performed at a secure ICANN facility in Culpepper, VA. On July 12, 2010, a second KSK ceremony will occur at a second secure ICANN facility in El Segunda, CA. The purpose of these ceremonies is to generate the specialized cryptographic materials needed to sign the root zone, distribute copies to two secure facilities, distribute the cryptographic fingerprint data to Trusted Community Representatives (TCRs) for verification, and to distribute crypto material to Recovery Key Share Holders in case of failure of these two ICANN facilities.

At Dyn Inc., we await the deployment of the signed Root Zone with much excitement. A signed root zone means that key stakeholders are paying attention to the criticality of the DNS and the role it serves in the Internet. To do our part, we've taken the following steps to DNSSEC-enable our systems and infrastructure:

  • We've prepared a DNSSEC implementation plan, posted at http://dyn.com/dynlabs-dnssec.
  • We've enabled DNSSEC communication with the .org domain registry through DynDNS.com. DynDNS.com .org domain holders can submit DNSSEC trust anchors to the .org registry via our website.
  • We've developed and maintain a complete key generation, key rollover, and zone signing system available to our Dynect Platform customers.

In the coming months, we'll continue to enable DNSSEC communication with other registries, and develop additional ways to manage DNSSEC crypto material to provide our users with an easy and simple path to DNSSEC signing their DNS zones. In the meantime, we all look forward to the signed root deployment on July 15th.

Written by Tom Daly, Chief Technology Officer at Dynamic Network Services, Inc.


About Dyn – Dyn is a cloud-based Internet Performance company. Dyn helps companies monitor, control, and optimize online infrastructure for an exceptional end-user experience. Through a world-class network and unrivaled, objective intelligence into Internet conditions, Dyn ensures traffic gets delivered faster, safer, and more reliably than ever. Learn More

Related topics: Cybersecurity, DNS, DNS Security, ICANN


Don't miss a thing – get the Weekly Wrap delivered to your inbox.

Related Blogs

Related News

Explore Topics

Dig Deeper

Afilias Mobile & Web Services

Mobile Internet

Sponsored by Afilias Mobile & Web Services

DNS Security

Sponsored by Afilias


Sponsored by Verisign

Promoted Posts

Now Is the Time for .eco

.eco launches globally at 16:00 UTC on April 25, 2017, when domains will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis. .eco is for businesses, non-profits and people committed to positive change for the planet. See list of registrars offering .eco more»

Industry Updates – Sponsored Posts

Verisign Named to the Online Trust Alliance's 2017 Audit and Honor Roll

Attacks Decrease by 23 Precent in 1st Quarter While Peak Attack Sizes Increase: DDoS Trends Report

Leading Internet Associations Strengthen Cooperation

Global Domain Name Registrations Reach 329.3 Million, 2.3 Million Growth in Last Quarter of 2016

Verisign Releases Q4 2016 DDoS Trends Report: 167% Increase in Average Peak Attack from 2015 to 2016

Neustar to be Acquired by Private Investment Group Led by Golden Gate Capital

Verisign Q3 2016 DDoS Trends Report: User Datagram Protocol (UDP) Flood Attacks Continue to Dominate

2016 U.S. Election: An Internet Forecast

Government Guidance for Email Authentication Has Arrived in USA and UK

Afilias Chairman Jonathan Robinson Wins ICANN's 2016 Leadership Award at ICANN 57

ValiMail Raises $12M for Its Email Authentication Service

MarkMonitor Supports Brand Holders' Efforts Regarding .Feedback Registry

Don't Gamble With Your DNS

Defending Against Layer 7 DDoS Attacks

Understanding the Risks of the Dark Web

New TLD? Make Sure It's Secure

Verisign Releases Q2 2016 DDoS Trends Report - Layer 7 DDoS Attacks a Growing Trend

How Savvy DDoS Attackers Are Using DNSSEC Against Us

Radix Adds Dyn as a DNS Service Provider

Facilitating a Trusted Web Space for Financial Service Professionals