Feeds

ICANN investigates domain name sharp practice

Insider dealing probe launched

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

Internet oversight agency ICANN has launched an investigation into the possibility that insider information is being used to snap up desirable domain names before the person or organisation likely to be interested in them has had a chance to buy.

ICANN's Security and Stability Advisory Committee is looking into suspicions that someone with access to search requests has been using this data to snap up potentially desirable domains, a process dubbed domain name front running.

Unlike traditional domain speculation, those who buy searched-for domains can be pretty sure of a potential interest when they attempt to sell their domains at a profit.

Suspicions that the sharp practice is happening have not yet been proven, but are fuelled by user experiences suggesting something is amiss. Many people who check to see if a domain is available reportedly find it's been bought by the time they return a short time later.

ICANN said the perception of sharp practice damages trust and tarnishes the image of the domain name registration industry. It said it was launching an inquiry to prevent this "perception from evolving to accepted wisdom", Reuters reports.

The committee is searching for evidence on whether or not domain fronting is happening. It will also, assuming it does find evidence of insider dealing, consider what policies and measures might be introduced to curtail the practice.

Possible mechanisms of the attack are speculated to include the use of data from unscrupulous third-party sites used to check domain name availability, or some form of data-harvesting malware. ®

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

More from The Register

next story
Spies would need SUPER POWERS to tap undersea cables
Why mess with armoured 10kV cables when land-based, and legal, snoop tools are easier?
Early result from Scots indyref vote? NAW, Jimmy - it's a SCAM
Anyone claiming to know before tomorrow is telling porkies
TOR users become FBI's No.1 hacking target after legal power grab
Be afeared, me hearties, these scoundrels be spying our signals
Jihadi terrorists DIDN'T encrypt their comms 'cos of Snowden leaks
Intel bods' analysis concludes 'no significant change' after whistle was blown
Home Depot: 56 million bank cards pwned by malware in our tills
That's about 50 per cent bigger than the Target tills mega-hack
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
NORKS ban Wi-Fi and satellite internet at embassies
Crackdown on tardy diplomatic sysadmins providing accidental unfiltered internet access
UK.gov lobs another fistful of change at SME infosec nightmares
Senior Lib Dem in 'trying to be relevant' shocker. It's only taxpayers' money, after all
Critical Adobe Reader and Acrobat patches FINALLY make it out
Eight vulns healed, including XSS and DoS paths
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.