Domain Name Wire

Domain Name Wire

Displaying posts tagged under "icann"

  • ICANN hacked, zone file system among victims

    1. BY - Dec 17, 2014
    2. Policy & Law
    3. 2 Comments

    Hackers phished ICANN employees to gain access to systems.

    ICANN revealed today that its systems were compromised by a phishing attack.

    The attack involved emails designed to look like they came from ICANN’s own domain name being sent to members of its staff. Email credentials of several ICANN staff members were obtained.

    It appears the biggest system to be accessed as a result of the security breach was The Centralized Zone Data System (CZDS). This system is a repository for zone files from each registry, updated daily. Many bloggers use this system to download zone file data.

    According to ICANN, the attacker gained access copies of the zone files in the system, as well as information entered by users such as name, postal address, email address, fax and telephone numbers, username and password. It says the passwords were stored as salted cryptographic hashes, but it has reset all passwords as a precaution.

    Was CZDS the target of the attack, or was it just one of the few systems the attackers could access with the obtained credentials?

    Given the current struggle over the transition of certain internet management functions away from the U.S. government, ICANN could become a target for future politically-motivated attacks. There could certainly be Sony-like emails that people would like to get their hands on.

    The attack occurred in November, and ICANN discovered that the compromised credentials were used to access the CZDS in December. ICANN says notice of the issue was not delayed as a result of a law enforcement investigation.

  • Internet wins as court denies motion to seize ccTLDs

    1. BY - Nov 12, 2014
    2. Policy & Law
    3. 2 Comments

    Court rules .ir, .sy, .kp and related IDNs cannot be “attached” as compensation.

    ICANN and the internet community at large got a victory this week as a U.S. court denied a request (pdf) to seize country code top level domains (ccTLDs) as compensation in a lawsuit.

    A number of claimants that had won a judgement against Iran, Syria and North Korea over terrorism charges had demanded control of the country’s ccTLDs (.IR, .SY and .KP plus IDN versions) as payment.

    The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia determined:

    The ccTLDs exist only as they are made operational by the ccTLD operators that administer the registries of second level domains within them and by the parties that cause the ccTLDs to be listed on the root zone file. A ccTLD, like a domain name, cannot be conceptualized apart from the services provided by these parties. The court cannot order plaintiffs’ insertion into this arrangement.

    Had the court ruled otherwise, it would have opened up a can of worms in internet governance. Already, many countries are not comfortable with the U.S.’s “control” of the internet.

    There is currently a process to lessen this role by taking the U.S. government out of a contractual relationship for certain functions managed by ICANN. World governments would have been incensed had a U.S. court granted the seizure of an existing country code top level domain name, even if they were those of state sponsors of terrorism.

  • ICANN: no decision yet on Morocco meeting

    1. BY - Oct 26, 2014
    2. Policy & Law
    3. 5 Comments

    Organization is considering its options due to possible travel restrictions.

    ICANN today responded to rumors about postponing next February’s meeting in Morocco by saying it has not yet made a decision. However, it confirmed that it is considering a postponement related to the Ebola outbreak.

    While Morocco itself is not at the center of the outbreak in Western Africa, host officials are concerned that future travel restrictions might limit the ability for people to attend the meeting from other African countries.

    This is not the first time ICANN has had to make a tough decision about whether to go forward with a meeting. In 2010, there were calls to relocate a meeting in Nairobi, Kenya due to security concerns. ICANN went ahead with the meeting, but a number of would-be participants attended remotely or in a satellite location in the United States.

    I’m not aware of anyone who attended that meeting who was affected by violence.

    ICANN had previously relocated another meeting scheduled for Kenya due to unrest.

  • ICANN slashes new TLD forecast, but is it enough?

    1. BY - Oct 21, 2014
    2. Domain Registrars
    3. 19 Comments

    ICANN is forecasting 15 million new TLD registrations during the current fiscal year.

    ICANN forecastICANN has slashed the number of new top level domain name registrations it expects during this fiscal year for budgeting purposes, but is its picture still too rosy?

    That’s a question that members of the Registrar Stakeholders group asked ICANN’s board last week in Los Angeles.

    In May, ICANN set a draft proposed budget for the 2015 fiscal year, which runs from this July to June 2015. Its revenue forecast from new top level domain names included a startling number of second level registrations under new TLDs: 33 million.

    It has since revised the forecast down 55% to just 15 million.

    Given results so far, it hardly seems likely that 15 million new domains will be registered in new TLDs before next summer — even if you include registrations occurring before the fiscal year began. There are currently about 2.8 million registrations.

    Domain registrars are concerned that they’ll get stuck holding the bag if revenue comes in below target.

    New TLD registries pay ICANN a fixed fee of $6,500 per quarter ($25,000 per year). If they have more than 50,000 “transactions” in a year, they pay 25 cents per domain. Transactions are actually domain-years, not registrations, but ICANN’s budget refers to a number of domains registered as an assumption in its forecast. I’m not sure how ICANN calculates this in the budget; they must be assuming a certain number of TLDs cross this threshold.

    Should domain registrations come in below forecast, then ICANN will have a revenue shortfall. The easiest place to make that up, the registrars fear, is by increasing the variable registrar fee on domain name registrations. That’s the 18 cent “ICANN Tax” you usually see passed on to the customer.

    ICANN’s latest FY2015 budget cites the number of new TLD registrations as a risk factor. In fact, it mentions the risk of a “lower number of transactions per registry” as “high”, and lists the likelihood of a “higher number of transactions per registry” as low.

    It certainly seems that ICANN should be planning for a lot fewer registrations than are in its budget.

  • 10 photos from ICANN 51

    1. BY - Oct 16, 2014
    2. Policy & Law
    3. 0 Comments

    A quick visual look at this week’s ICANN meeting in Los Angeles.

    It has been a busy, busy week in Los Angeles. I’ll have more thoughts on ICANN 51 later. For now, I have a collection of photos from in and around the event. Captions are below each photo.

    Entertainment during TLD Registry (“Dot Chinese Online” and “Dot Chinese Website”) and .Club event on Sunday at a popular Chinese restaurant. I also had a chance to hang out with TLD Registry when it was in Austin last week. I’ve come to the conclusion that TLD Registry and .Club are two of the hardest working registries out there, which might bode well for their long term success. Click here to see the rest of the photos from ICANN 51.