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Cybersecurity / Recently Commented

Doing Our Part for a Safer, Stronger DNS

Public Interest Registry is the industry leader of DNS Anti-Abuse efforts on the Internet. Since our inception, we have worked to empower people and organizations that use the Internet to make the world a better place. Whether a .ORG is the foundation of an individual voice, a global non-profit, or any organization that is part of the mission-driven .ORG community, we are proud to have earned the trust of so many dedicated users. more

Let’s Have an Honest Conversation About Huawei

On May 29, I attended an AEI event on "International economics and securing next-generation 5G wireless networks," with Ambassador Robert Strayer, who heads the U.S. State Department's CIP team. But the focus of the talk was not really on 5G security, international trade or 5G development. In fact, there was no constructive agenda at all. The talk was an extended attack on China and the Chinese-based telecommunications vendor Huawei – another episode in an ongoing U.S. government campaign to shut Huawei and other Chinese firms out of the U.S. market, and to convince every other country in the world to do the same. more

Leading Domain Registries and Registrars Release Joint Document on Addressing ‘DNS Abuse’

A group of leading domain name registries and registrars have joined forces in the fight against abuse in the Domain Name System (DNS), by developing a "Framework to Address Abuse." Each contributing company has shared its expertise and experience mitigating abusive practices with the goal of submitting the resulting Framework as a foundational document for further discussion in the multistakeholder community.  more

Business Email Compromised (BEC) Scams Explode Under the GDPR Implementation

Business email compromised (BEC) attacks targeting American companies are exploding, with an increase of over 476% in incidents between Q4 2017 and Q4 2018. Up as well is email fraud with companies experiencing an increase of over 226%. These highly targeted attacks use social engineering to identify specific company employees, usually in the finance department and then convince these employees to wire large sums of money to third-party banking accounts owned by the attackers. more

DNS-over-HTTPS: Privacy and Security Concerns

The design of DNS included an important architectural decision: the transport protocol used is user datagram protocol (UDP). Unlike transmission control protocol (TCP), UDP is connectionless, stateless, and lightweight. In contrast, TCP needs to establish connections between end systems and guarantees packet ordering and delivery. DNS handles the packet delivery reliability aspect internally and avoids all of the overhead of TCP. There are two problems this introduces. more

A New Project Called Handshake Wants to Decentralize DNS, Says It’s Unlike Previous Attempts

An entity called the Handshake Network claims its newly developed open source project offers advantages over the traditional naming and signature systems. more

5G Security Transparency

There is considerable rhetoric propagated today about 5G security. Some of the more blatant assertions border on xenophobia with vague assertions that the 5G vendors from some countries cannot be trusted and wholesale government banning is required. Existing treaty obligations are being summarily abrogated in favour of bilateral trade bullying. These are practices that the late President George H.W. Bush sought to eliminate a quarter century ago through intergovernmental organization initiatives... more

Making Voting Easy is Scaring the Life Out of Security Experts

Apollo 11 was the spaceflight which landed the first two humans on the Moon. Commander Neil Armstrong and lunar module pilot Buzz Aldrin landed the Apollo Lunar Module, Eagle, on July 20, 1969. Armstrong became the first person to step onto the lunar surface six hours later, and Aldrin joined him 19 minutes later. The two astronauts spent about two and a quarter hours outside the spacecraft, and they collected 47.5 pounds of lunar material to bring back. more

Five Inconvenient Facts about the Migration to 5G Wireless

An unprecedented disinformation campaign purposefully distorts what consumers and governments understand about the upcoming fifth generation of wireless broadband technology. A variety of company executives and their sponsored advocates want us to believe that the United States already has lost the race to 5G global market supremacy and that it can regain it only with the assistance of a compliant government and a gullible public. more

A Report on the ICANN DNS Symposium

By any metric, the queries and responses that take place in the DNS are highly informative of the Internet and its use. But perhaps the level of interdependencies in this space is richer than we might think. When the IETF considered a proposal to explicitly withhold certain top-level domains from delegation in the DNS the ensuing discussion highlighted the distinction between the domain name system as a structured space of names and the domain name system as a resolution space... more

A Short History of DNS Over HTTP (So Far)

The IETF is in the midst of a vigorous debate about DNS over HTTP or DNS over HTTPS, abbreviated as DoH. How did we get there, and where do we go from here? (This is somewhat simplified, but I think the essential chronology is right.) Javascript code running in a web browser can't do DNS lookups, other than with browser.dns.resolv() to fetch an A record, or implicitly by fetching a URL which looks up a DNS A or AAAA record for the domain in the URL. more

DNS Privacy at IETF 104

From time to time the IETF seriously grapples with its role with respect to technology relating to users' privacy. Should the IETF publish standard specifications of technologies that facilitate third-party eavesdropping on communications or should it refrain from working on such technologies? Should the IETF take further steps and publish standard specifications of technologies that directly impede various forms of third party eavesdropping on communications? more

Unexpected Behaviour Observed With DNS Root Servers After Cryptographic Change

The DNS root servers were reported by Verisign to be under unexpected attack from name servers across the Internet following ICANN's recent changes to their cryptographic master keys. more

Putting Cyber Threats Into Perspective

As society uses more digital technologies we are increasingly also faced with its problems. Most of us will have some horror stories to tell about using computers, smartphones, and the internet. But this hasn't stopped us from using the technology more and more. I believe that most people would say that their lives would be worse without technology -- in developed countries but equally in the developing world. more

Say YES to DNSSEC

With the latest "DNSpionage" attack, ICANN astutely prompted domain name holders to fully deploy DNSSEC on their names. Afilias absolutely supports this and encourages the same. In this post, I remind you of why DNSSEC is important and our continued role. Afilias has a long history in the development and advocacy of DNSSEC. In 2007, we partnered with Public Interest Registry to help found dnssec-deployment.org. more

Industry Updates

Beauty and the Beast: Are These Domains Possible Vehicles for Cosmetic Product Counterfeiting?

Are Threat Actors Intercepting Your OTPs? These Cyber Resources Might Be Helping Them

Unlike Its Namesake, Aoqin Dragon Isn’t Mythical

Matanbuchus with Cobalt Strike: Not Your Favorite Combo

Conti Ransomware: Still Alive and Kicking

Predator Surveillance Software May Not Be Lawful at All

GALLIUM APT Group and Other Threat Actors in Disguise

Both Aged and New Domains Play a Role in the NDSW/NDSX Malware Campaign

Phishers Are Impersonating Maersk: What Other Container Shipping Companies Are Targeted?

Careful, the Next Premium SMS Offer You Subscribe to May Be Malicious

Father’s Day: Bad Guys’ Activities

Phishing Automated through Chatbots, We Found Potentially Connected Domains

In the Market for a New Car? Beware Not to Get on the Phishing Bandwagon

Blurring the Lines between APTs and Cybercrime: Cobalt Mirage Uses Ransomware to Target U.S. Organizations

Online Shopping Danger? 13K+ Cybersquatting Properties of Top E-Commerce Sites Discovered