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Cybercrime / Featured Blogs

The State of DNS Abuse: Moving Backward, Not Forward

ICANN's founding promise and mandate are optimistic -- ensure a stable and secure internet that benefits the internet community as a whole. Recent months, however, have highlighted the uncomfortable truth that ICANN's and the industry's approach to DNS abuse is actually moving backward, ignoring growing problems, abdicating on important policy issues, and making excuses for not acting. Further, the impending failure of ICANN's new WHOIS policy to address cybersecurity concerns will add fuel to the fire, resulting in accelerating DNS abuse that harms internet users across the globe. more

Hot Take on the Twitter Hack

If you read this blog, you've probably heard by now about the massive Twitter hack. Briefly, many high-profile accounts were taken over and used to tweet scam requests to send Bitcoins to a particular wallet, with the promise of double your money back. Because some of the parties hit are sophisticated and security-aware, it seems unlikely that the attack was a straightforward one directly on these accounts. more

Beware of Abandoned Domain Names in this Turbulent Time and as the Global Economy Changes

The outbreak of COVID-19 has caused worldwide disruption -- for whole nations and their economies. Unfortunately, there will be some side effects for businesses. A number of brands will disappear from the streets and shelves, as businesses that fail to weather the storm will have to fold. Companies that do survive will likely focus more on their core markets, pulling brands out of higher risk, less profitable markets... more

Freedom of Expression Part 3: Child Pornography, Manga, Anime, Obscene Publication

At the 44th Session of the Human Rights Council, we heard how 1 billion children in 2019 who were subjected to various forms of violence and the need for more action to protect children according to the Special Rapporteur. The United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child released Guidelines on the implementation of the international treaty that bans child pornography, proposing to expand its interpretation to include bans on drawings and stories that sexually depict minors. more

Freedom of Expression Part 2: Blocking, Filtering and Removing Online Content

The Internet is a catalyst for what has revolutionised and transformed human societies in giving extraordinary access to information that has catapulted development and economic growth. It also comes with threats of exploitation by those who wish to do harm. In Part 1 of these series, we looked at how Twitter banned Graham Linehan for his tweet where we saw that to an extent, it was justifiable under Californian law but that a Judge in the Fiji courts would disagree with. more

Hundreds of "George Floyd" and "Black Lives Matter" Domain Names Appear in the DNS

Trending news and global events impact domain registration behaviors. We observed a slew of coronavirus-themed domain name registrations, for example, as early as January. George Floyd's death, which sparked several Black Lives Matter movements, is no different. Three days after George Floyd died, our data feed started detecting George Floyd-themed domain names... We retrieved all domain names that contain the strings "eorge," and "lackliv" from 28 May to 7 June and found 402. more

Surveillance Capitalist in Chief

Surveillance capitalism monetizes private data that it collects without consent of the individuals concerned, data to analyze and sell to advertisers and opinion-makers. There was always an intricate relationship between governments and surveillance capitalists. Governments have the duty to protect their citizens from the excesses of surveillance capitalism. On the other hand, governments use that data, and surveillance capitalism's services and techniques. more

Measuring Abuse: How Much COVID-Related Abuse Is There, Really?

Like measuring COVID's impact, so too measuring the impact of COVID-related abuse on the Internet is difficult, there are those that would foolishly dismiss the danger entirely, others over-state the problem, perhaps to prompt sales of tools and services. The amount and type of abuse varies from network to network, and to declare everything is fine based on one world-view you believe to be ubiquitous, or that the sky is falling based upon another, extrapolated to 'everybody else' is simply poor analysis. more

3 Reasons It's Crucial to Review Your Domain Lock Portfolio Now

Just as we started the new year, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency's (CISA) issued an alert. On January 6, 2020 , they warned of domain name system (DNS) hijacking and other cyber threats that may be used by nation-state threat actors to disrupt business activity and take control of vital internet assets. A familiar refrain heard in 2019 now repeating in 2020. more

Coronavirus Online Threats Going Viral, Part 5: Social Media

For our final blog in this series, looking at the online risks associated with COVID-19, we focus on social media. The popularity of social media channels means that they are extremely susceptible to exploitation by cybercriminals and other infringers, particularly during the coronavirus crisis. In an earlier post in this series, we discussed the use of social media for the distribution of phishing-related content, but CSC has also noted marked activity relating to the creation of fake accounts. more