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WHOIS History API: Powering Domain Investigations

Domain Research and Monitoring: Keeping an Eye on the Web for You

Reverse WHOIS: A Powerful Process in Cybersecurity

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ICANN and Your Internet Abuse

In spite of the material we were presented with in Durban something has gone very wrong inside of ICANN Compliance. KnujOn has published a report which demonstrates that ICANN Compliance appears to completely collapse between September 2012 and December 2012. Following December 2012, ICANN seems to stop responding to or processing any complaints. It is around this time certain compliance employees start disappearing. This was not limited to the Sydney office as some would have us believe... more

Sorry, Not Sorry: WHOIS Data Must Remain Public

In March, I posted a call to action to those of us in the community who have the inclination to fight against a movement to redact information critical to anti-abuse research. Today, I felt compelled to react to some of the discussions on the ICANN discussion list dedicated to the issue of WHOIS reform: Sorry, not sorry: I work every working hour of the day to protect literally hundreds of millions of users from privacy violating spam, phish, malware, and support scams. more

More on WHOIS Privacy

Last week I wrote a note the ICANN WHOIS privacy battle, and why nothing's likely to change any time soon. Like many of my articles, it is mirrored at CircleID, where some of the commenters missed the point. One person noted that info about car registrations, to which I roughly likened WHOIS, are usually available only to law enforcement, and that corporations can often be registered in the name of a proxy, so why can't WHOIS do the same thing? more

EU NameSpace is Dead?

The European Union's .eu Top-Level Domain (TLD) sunrise and landrush has probably been discussed to death, but what is the landscape like over a year later? A lot of industry insiders were right to express their doubts about the stability of .eu following on from the high profile squats that have been discussed here at length. Of course any discussion on a new TLD would have to wait until after the first wave of renewals. That happened in April, so now, in July, it's a good as time to take stock of the situation... more

Lobbying for Whois Privacy

Today a letter was submitted to the President of ICANN, Paul Twomey, at the ICANN Carthage meeting, "asking him to ensure that strong privacy safeguards, based on internationally accepted standards, are established for the WHOIS database." Latest reports indicated that the draft letter had been signed by about 50 nonprofit groups and represented 21 countries on six continents. "Signers of the letter included the American Library Association, the U.S. Association for Computing Machinery, the Australian Council for Civil Liberties, Electronic Frontier Finland, Privacy Ukraine, and the United Kingdom's Foundation for Information Policy Research." more

CIRA Proposes New Standard for Domain Name Whois Privacy

The Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA) has announced its proposed policy to provide all dot-ca domain name holders with increased privacy safeguards, bringing it in line with recently-enacted Canadian privacy laws. more

IDNs and IE7 and the Coming Storm

If you're brave, today you can finally download the Internet Explorer 7 public beta. Why should you be interested? Not because the browser's wonderful. It isn't -- initial reports are that it's not ready for prime-time. But you might be interested to know that as of today, users of IE will be able to use internationalized domain names (IDNs). ...Many other browsers are already IDN-capable, including Firefox, but most people in the world use Explorer. Think China, Japan, India. Think most of the world's population... Think of millions of new Internet users working in their own language, customers for commercial goods and services. But think also about intellectual property nightmares, think about phishing, think about whether there's one interoperable Internet, or several Internets acting very weird. These issues and others will become big news when people start using IDNs massively -- and with support from Internet Explorer, that's about to happen. more

Privacy Matters: Is It Time To Abolish The WHOIS Database?

Recently, I entered my domain name in a "WHOIS" database query to test the results of the database by using WHOIS on a number of domain name registrar websites. WHOIS is a database service that allows Internet users to look up a number of matters associated with domain names, including the full name of the owner of a domain name, the name of the domain name hosting service, the Internet Protocol or I.P. number(s) corresponding to the domain name, as well as personally identifying information on those who have registered domain names. I was astonished to find... more

ICANN Montreal: Real-Time Thoughts During the WHOIS Meeting - 1st Session

I'm going to try something new here. I'm sitting here at the ICANN meeting on whois and I'll try to jot down some of my thoughts as they occur to me in reaction to what is being said:

- What is the "purpose" of whois? When a person acquires a domain name he/she has a decision to make: whether he/she will give the vendor/registrar his/her personal information? (If not, the person might have to forego getting the name, but that's his/her choice.) It seems that that is the context in which we need to evaluate the "purpose" of whois. In other words, the person relinquishes the information for the purpose of acquiring a domain name and not the broad panopoly of uses that have grown around whois. more

Al's Story: Another Small Domain Holder Falls Victim to Flawed ICANN Policy

Al Bode is typical of the many small, individual domain name holders throughout the United States and the world. He is a high school teacher of the Spanish language, not a techie, and he registered the domain IOWAWLA.ORG to provide an online presence for the Iowa World Language Association, a professional association for foreign-language educators in the US State of Iowa, of which he is a member. This domain could in no way be considered a commercial venture. In his own words, "I am a school teacher from Iowa whose websites are personally funded for the express purpose of education. There is no profit motive or even profit other than the knowledge that others may gain from my website." more

Hijacking of Panix.com: A Call for An Emergency Rollback Procedure

There's a thread on NANOG to the effect that Panix, the oldest commercial Internet provider in New York, had its domain name 'panix.com' hijacked from Dotster over to MelbourneIT and it has pretty well taken panix.com and its customers offline. Looks like this may be among the first high-profile unauthorized transfer under the new transfer policy. It begs the question, despite the existence of the dispute policy under the new system, what provisions should there be for a situation like this where every hour causes untold damage to the party in question... more

Rebooting Whois

As some readers probably know, I spend quite a bit of my time working on Internet policy related matters. Some of it may appear incredibly boring, but it matters. (If you really want me to explain why it matters I'd be happy to do so!) Since earlier this year I've been part of a small team of people drawn from the four corners of the globe and asked to re-examine "whois". more

ICANN Montreal: Real-Time Thoughts During the WHOIS Meeting - 2nd Session

John LoGalbo - a "law enforcement" type - is complaining how long it takes him to issue a subpoena. My thought is this: Why should our privacy suffer because his organization can't get its procedural act together?

I am incensed - he is simply stating a conclusion that his targets are "criminals" and that, to go after them, he wants to throw away all legal processes and procedures - so much for the fourth, fifth, sixth, and fourteenth amendments. more

Is Industry Underestimating the Ending Dot?

According to RFC1034, "cnn.com" and "cnn.com." should be the same domain names. However, it doesn't appear that programmers always understand that trailing dots can be added to domain names. Web servers also can't seem to agree what to do with a period at the end of a host name. IIS, thttp, and Akamai's Web server all get confused while Apache doesn't seem to care. How much other software behaves incorrectly because of a trailing period on a domain name? Can spam-filtering software be bypassed with dotted email addresses? Here is a situation when bad things can happen -- "WebShield SMTP infinite loop DoS Attack"... more

Sponsored TLD Unnecessary? Ron Andruff Responds to Forrester Research

A recent report released by Forrester Research last week has put the .travel sponsored top-level domain under the microscope -- calling the sTLD "Nice, But Not Necessary". Although this 4-page report (sold for US$49.00) has singled out the .travel domain, its critical arguments might very well apply to the nature of most sponsored top-level domains currently in existence -- or under review: '.mobi', '.jobs', '.museum', '.coop', '.xxx' and others. CircleID has invited Ron Andruff, President and CEO of Tralliance, the registry for .travel, to respond to arguments made in this report. more

Industry Updates

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Gathering Context Around Emotet, Trickbot, and Dridex C&C Servers with Bulk IP Geolocation

Augmenting Digital Risk Protection with Threat Intelligence Sources

Threat Intelligence Feeds in the Fight against Insurance-Themed Cyber Attacks

WHOIS History Footprint Tells Us More about the Man Behind the Biggest BLM Scam

100K+ List of Disposable Email Domains Under Security Analysis

Detecting Possible Domain Generation Algorithm-Related Threats Using Typosquatting Data Feed

Subdomain Lookup as Part of Cybersecurity Best Practices

Using WHOIS History and Other Intelligence Sources for Establishing Potential Attack Surfaces

DNS Records Lookup of "Walmart Drive-In Movie Theater" Domains Indicates Likely Typosquatting

What a WHOIS Registrant Lookup Can Tell about "Kanye West" Newly Registered Domains

Host to IP and DNS Analysis of Dozens of Fortnite-Inspired Typosquatting Domains