News and Updates

Former ICA Legal Counsel Phil Corwin Accepts a New Position as Policy Counsel for Verisign

DN Journal - Mon, 2017-11-06 21:47
Now we know what that new opportunity was that prompted Phil Corwin to give up his position as ICA Legal Counsel.
Categories: News and Updates

A Glance Back at the Looking Glass: Will IP Really Take Over the World?

Domain industry news - Mon, 2017-11-06 21:15

In 2003, the world of network engineering was far different than it is today. For instance, EIGRP was still being implemented on the basis of its ability to support multi-protocol routing. SONET, and other optical technologies were just starting to come into their own, and all-optical switching was just beginning to be considered for large-scale deployment. What Hartley says of history holds true when looking back at what seems to be a former age: "The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there."

In the midst of this change, the Association for Computing Machinery (the ACM) published a paper entitled "Will IP really take over the world (of communications)?" This paper, written during the ongoing discussion within the engineering community over whether packet switching or circuit switching is the "better" technology, provides a lot of insight into the thinking of the time. Specifically, as the author says, the belief that IP is better:

… is based on our collective belief that packet switching is inherently superior to circuit switching because of the efficiencies of statistical multiplexing, and the ability of IP to route around failures. It is widely assumed that IP is simpler than circuit switching, and should be more economical to deploy and manage.

Several of the reasons given are worth considering in light of the intervening years between the paper being written and today. Section 2 of the paper suggest four myths that need to be considering in the world of IP based packet switching.

The first of these myths is that IP is more efficient. Here the authors point out an early argument used by packet switching advocates: when a circuit is idle, reserved bandwidth is unused. Because packets do not reserve bandwidth in this way, packet switching makes more efficient use of the available resources. The authors counter this argument by observing packets switched networks are not that heavily utilized, and the exploring why this might be so. The reasons they give are that packet switched networks become unstable if they are overutilized, and the desire to drive delay down as much as possible. The authors say:

But simply reducing the average link utilization will not be enough to make users happy. For a typical user to experience low utilization, the variance of the network utilization needs to be low, too. Reducing variations in link utilization is hard; today we lack effective techniques to do it. It might be argued that the problem will be solved by research efforts on traffic management, congestion control, and multipath routing. But to-date, despite these problems being understood for many years, effective measures are yet to be introduced.

The second of these myths is that IP is stable. Here the authors point out the many potential problems with packet switched networks, particularly in the area of in-band signaling.

The third myth the authors consider is that IP is simpler. Here the argument is that circuit switched networks have fewer moving parts, each of which can be more regimented in their implementation. This means circuit switched networks are generally simpler than their packet-switched counterparts.

The fourth myth the authors consider is that real-time traffic will be able to run over IP based networks. They argue that because of the various quality of service problems, near real-time traffic, such as voice and video, can never be carried over an IP network.

What did the authors do get right, and what did they get wrong? Looking back over the intervening years, some of these problems seem to have been largely solved. For instance, between research into new quality of service solutions, virtualization technologies, and research into and deployment of new methods of managing traffic flows over a packet switched network (for instance, as implemented in QUIC), have largely eased the problems the authors discuss.

Other problems on their list seem to have simply fallen by the wayside. For instance, the authors are largely correct on the stability of IP routing. The Internet, as it exists today, is not really stable. The default free zone, the Internet core, never does really converge. But, on the other hand, it turns out that it might not be all that important. So long as reachability exists, and the applications running over the network can deal with the variable delay, then it does not really matter. It is clear that IP networks can be used for near real-time traffic at this point, as well.

The third myth is, perhaps, the most interesting — IP is more complex. Circuit switching generally relies on a centralized control plane, rather than a distributed one. Is this truly simpler? Advocates of Software Defined Networks have argued recently that it is, but I am not convinced. The problem here, it seems to me, is the conflation of reachability and policy into a single "thing" that must be solved using a single subsystem of the network as a system. I tend to think that we will have a much healthier discussion around control plane design and operation once we split the various purposes the control plane serves up into different pieces, and discuss each one as a separate problem and solution space.

What did the authors get right? They were right in surmising that circuit switched networks, particularly in the area of optical switching, would continue to play a role in the global Internet. In fact, you could argue that packet and circuit switched networks often live side-by-side in the global Internet today, with many long haul and metropolitan area links being good examples of circuit switched networks underlying a packet switched overlay. MPLS, of course, also provides a sort of hybrid mode between circuit and packet switching which enables many of the solutions deployed today.

Much as we might like to look back in derision at papers such as this, the reality is the authors were accurately pointing out many of the problems with packet switched networks, some of which still have not been solved today. These objections should not be taken as a relic of the past, but rather as a pointer to what yet remains to be solved, where problems may crop up again, and, finally, where we might look for solutions that may, ultimately, solve the problem of carrying data at scale.

Written by Russ White, Network Architect at LinkedIn

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More under: Internet Protocol, IP Addressing, Networks

Categories: News and Updates

Endurance writes off $13.8 million in domain name value

Domain Name Wire - Mon, 2017-11-06 19:14

Company that acquired BuyDomains in 2014 just wrote off $13.8 million in domain value.

Endurance International Group has written off $13.8 million of value from domain names it acquired in 2014.

The company made the disclosure in its most recent quarterly filing with the SEC:

During the three and nine months ended September 30, 2017, the Company recognized an impairment charge of $13.8 million relating to certain domain name intangible assets acquired in 2014, which was recorded in cost of revenue in the consolidated statements of operations and comprehensive loss. The impairment resulted from diminished cash flows associated with this intangible asset.

While the SEC filing does not mention it by name, 2014 is when Endurance acquired BuyDomains for $44.9 million.

I reached out to Endurance’s investor relations department for clarification.


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Categories: News and Updates

STEM to STEMM: It Will Take Musicians to Save the Internet

Domain industry news - Mon, 2017-11-06 17:46

The internet is under all kinds of attacks from all kinds of people for all kinds of reasons. It’s not just the internet’s infrastructure that is under attack, so too is the very concept of the internet as an open communications platform serving the commonweal. Constructing effective technical defenses of the internet will require that America’s students learn and develop the quantitative disciplines known as STEM; Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. Constructing effective, ethical defenses of the internet will require that students study art and philosophy. The two educational paths are symbiotic; increasing student participation in STEM education will require tearing down the thickening academic walls that separate the arts from the sciences.

Policymakers should build on Carnegie’s pedagogical model of combining STEM disciplines with the arts. Music has been understood since ancient times to be mathematical beauty made audible. The actress and singer-songwriter Minnie Driver explained in a White House blog post that “Without music in my curriculum, I never would have understood math. I am so grateful to the teacher who ... encouraged me to explore my love of music as a way to help unscramble my block with mathematics.”

A century ago, a notable academic institution set an example in how to develop STEM students. Long before it was a university, the Carnegie Institute of Technology included a drama department as part of its core educational mission. The US’s “oldest conservatory training, and the first degree-granting drama institution...” was established in 1914 by one of America’s greatest STEM educational institutions.

The National Science and Technology Council’s 2013 Five Year Strategic Plan for advancing STEM education had something in common with one of the council’s earlier reports and with STEM education reports from Congress. They fail to mention one word: Music.

How often is a young man pounding out complex polyrhythms profiled as a potential architect? How often is a young woman who slices and dices beats on her smartphone profiled as a cryptographer? How often are young coronet players profiled as the government’s next differential game theorists?

Why not? How does the government define the term “STEM”?

GAO compiled a list of 209 federal programs “designed to increase knowledge of STEM fields and attainment of STEM degrees.” In developing its survey methodology to identify the programs, GAO “determined that a STEM field should be considered any of the following” ten “broad disciplines” as well as certain health care programs. The ten broad disciplines include mathematics, engineering, and technology as well as basic and applied sciences including behavioral and cognitive sciences and other social sciences.

GAO used an inclusive approach to defining STEM fields and a painstaking survey methodology to identify specific programs. A review of the 209 STEM programs makes evident that, for purposes of identifying quantitatively gifted students, the federal government has divorced the arts from the sciences.

The Executive Branch’s centralized regulatory review process is capable of playing a lead role in ensuring that music education is recognized as a STEM program. National security statutes promoting STEM education don’t contain any statutory bars to the executive branch recognizing that music is part of mathematics. Thus, OMB should consider issuing guidance directing agencies to recognize music education as qualifying for STEM-related funding unless contrary to law. In short, STEM could and should become STEMM; Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, and Music.

America needs to move from STEM to STEMM: It will take musicians to save the internet.

Written by Bruce Levinson, SVP, Regulatory Intervention - Center for Regulatory Effectiveness

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More under: Policy & Regulation

Categories: News and Updates

Apple gets Reverse Domain Name Hijacking decision in cybersquatting dispute

Domain Name Wire - Mon, 2017-11-06 16:35

Dairy company tries to get Lala.com domain name through cybersquatting complaint.

Apple (NASDAQ: APPL) has successfully defended its domain name LaLa.com in a cybersquatting dispute. The World Intellectual Property Organization panel hearing the case decided that the complaint was brought in bad faith.

Comercializadora de Lacteos y Derivados, S.A., a Mexican producer of dairy products under the LaLa brand, filed the dispute against LaLa.com. The domain name was acquired by music service La La Media, Inc, which Apple acquired in 2009 and subsequently shut down. Apple maintains email services on the domain name.

Clearly, the domain name was not acquired in bad faith and Apple had rights or legitimate interests in the domain name. Apple did not ask the panel to find reverse domain name hijacking. But the panel considered it anyway and noted that the dairy company provided little to no evidence to back up its claims. It also appears that the dairy company previously tried to buy the domain from Apple and didn’t mention this in its complaint.


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Latest domain news at DNW.com: Domain Name Wire.

The post Apple gets Reverse Domain Name Hijacking decision in cybersquatting dispute appeared first on Domain Name Wire | Domain Name News & Website Stuff.

Related posts:
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  3. Another Gleissner company loses a UDRP, this one to Qualcomm
Categories: News and Updates

Can Blockchain upend the domain aftermarket? – DNW Podcast #159

Domain Name Wire - Mon, 2017-11-06 16:30

Blockchain might be able to decentralize the domain aftermarket.

Everyone is talking about blockchain. Can it have a major impact on the domain name aftermarket? On today’s show I talk with Reza Sardeha, a co-founder of domain name aftermarket service Undeveloped.com, to get to the bottom of it. Reza believes Blockchain can transform the industry to everyone’s benefit. We dig into it to try to separate hype from reality. Also: Amazon’s cryptocurrency domains, DirectNic acquires Fabulous.com and more.

Subscribe via iTunes to listen to the Domain Name Wire podcast on your iPhone or iPad, view on Google Play Music, or click play below or download to begin listening. (Listen to previous podcasts here.)


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Latest domain news at DNW.com: Domain Name Wire.

The post Can Blockchain upend the domain aftermarket? – DNW Podcast #159 appeared first on Domain Name Wire | Domain Name News & Website Stuff.

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Categories: News and Updates

Researchers Find One-Third of IPv4 Address Space Under Some Type of DoS Attack

Domain industry news - Sun, 2017-11-05 20:50

For the first time, a large-scale analysis of victims of internet denial-of-service (DoS) attacks worldwide has resulted in discovery of millions of network addresses subjeted to denial-of-service attacks over a two-year period. The study was conducted by research scientists at CAIDA (Center for Applied Internet Data Analysis), based at the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC) at the University of California San Diego. They report: "Our analysis leverages data from four independent global Internet measurement infrastructures over the last two years: backscatter traffic to a large network telescope; logs from amplification honeypots; a DNS measurement platform covering 60% of the current namespace; and a DNS-based data set focusing on DPS adoption. Our results reveal the massive scale of the DoS problem, including an eye-opening statistic that one-third of all /24 networks recently estimated to be active on the Internet have suffered at least one DoS attack over the last two years. We also discovered that often targets are simultaneously hit by different types of attacks. In our data, Web servers were the most prominent attack target; an average of 3% of the Web sites in .com, .net, and .org were involved with attacks, daily. Finally, we shed light on factors influencing migration to a DPS."

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More under: Cyberattack, Cybersecurity, DDoS, IP Addressing

Categories: News and Updates

Twitter Worker Who Disabled Trump Account Likely Violated Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, Says Lawyer

Domain industry news - Sun, 2017-11-05 19:41

A prominent attorney for cybersecurity issues says the unnamed Twitter worker who deactivated President Trump's Twitter account not to say anything and get a lawyer. Joe Uchill reporting in The Hill: "[W]hile the facts of the case are still unclear and the primary law used to prosecute hackers is murky and unevenly applied, there is a reasonable chance the Twitter worker violated the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. ... The employee could be in a lot of trouble. This was not just unauthorized access, but damage ... noting that causing $5,000 worth of damage could carry a 10-year prison sentence. With the amount of traffic Trump's tweets garner for Twitter's business, that could be fairly easy to prove."

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More under: Law

Categories: News and Updates

Cloud Managed Services Market Expected to Reach $82.51 Billion by 2025

Domain industry news - Fri, 2017-11-03 21:08

The global cloud managed services market is expected to reach USD 82.51 billion by 2025, according to market research and consulting company Grand View Research. From the report: "The need to focus on core business practices has increased the adoption of cloud managed services. The services include business services, network services, security services, data center services, and mobility services. ... In North America, the availability of advanced IT infrastructure is expected to drive the adoption of cloud managed services. The Asia Pacific and MEA regions are expected to witness considerable growth, as enterprises are shifting toward the cloud and prominent technology providers, such as IBM and Google, are making significant investments for the same."

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More under: Cloud Computing

Categories: News and Updates

Phil Corwin leaves Internet Commerce Association

Domain Name Wire - Fri, 2017-11-03 16:25

Corwin leaves domain investor advocacy group to take new opportunity.

The Internet Commerce Association (ICA), a group working on behalf of domain name investors, is losing its legal counsel.

Phil Corwin is departing this week after a decade as counsel for the organization. Corwin is leaving to take another opportunity, which has not yet been disclosed.

Corwin has done a lot to advocate on behalf of domain name investors, representing their interests at ICANN and in other venues. He is essentially the founding counsel of the organization.

While his presence and continuity of service will be missed, I’m a big believer that a changing of the guard can lead to new insights and improvements.

Corwin was not a member of the board. The board consists of Jay Chapman (Digimedia), Nat Cohen (Telepathy), Jeremiah Johnston (Sedo), Dan Law, Bob Mountain (GoDaddy) and Zak Muscovitch.

Muscovitch, a lawyer who frequently handles domain name cases, will take over Corwin’s duties on an interim and volunteer basis while the group searches for a long-term replacement for Corwin.

Domain name investors can support the ICA’s critical efforts by joining as an individual member.


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Latest domain news at DNW.com: Domain Name Wire.

The post Phil Corwin leaves Internet Commerce Association appeared first on Domain Name Wire | Domain Name News & Website Stuff.

Related posts:
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Categories: News and Updates

ICA Legal Counsel Phil Corwin Leaving Job After 11 Years in Leadership Role

DN Journal - Fri, 2017-11-03 15:47
After serving as the Internet Commerce Association's Legal Counsel since the day the organization was founded in 2006, Phil Corwin is moving on.
Categories: News and Updates

Google Can, at Least for Now, Disregard Canadian Court Order Requiring Deindexing Worldwide

Domain industry news - Fri, 2017-11-03 14:52

U.S. federal court issues preliminary injunction, holding that enforcement of Canadian order requiring Google to remove search results would run afoul of the Communications Decency Act (at 47 U.S.C. 230)

Canadian company Equustek prevailed in litigation in Canada against rival Datalink on claims relating to trade secret misappropriation and unfair competition. After the litigation, Equustek asked Google to remove Datalink search results worldwide. Google initially refused altogether, but after a Canadian court entered an injunction against Datalink, Google removed Datalink results from google.ca. Then a Canadian court ordered Google to delist worldwide, and Google complied. Google objected to the order requiring worldwide delisting, and took the case all the way up to the Canadian Supreme Court, which affirmed the lower courts' orders requiring worldwide delisting.

So Google filed suit in federal court in the United States, seeking a declaratory judgment that being required to abide by the Canadian order would, among other things, be contrary to the protections afforded to interactive computer service providers under the Communications Decency Act, at 47 U.S.C. 230.

The court entered the preliminary injunction (i.e., it found in favor of Google pending a final trial on the merits), holding that (1) Google would likely succeed on its claim under the Communications Decency Act, (2) it would suffer irreparable harm in the absence of preliminary relief, (3) the balance of equities weighed in its favor, and (4) an injunction was in the public interest.

Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act immunizes providers of interactive computer services against liability arising from content created by third parties. It states that "[n]o provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider." [More info about Section 230]

The court found that there was no question Google is a "provider" of an "interactive computer service." Also, it found that Datalink — not Google — "provided" the information at issue. And finally, it found that the Canadian order would hold Google liable as the "publisher or speaker" of the information on Datalink's websites. So the Canadian order treated Google as a publisher, and would impose liability for failing to remove third-party content from its search results. For these reasons, Section 230 applied.

Summarizing the holding, the court observed that:

The Canadian order would eliminate Section 230 immunity for service providers that link to third-party websites. By forcing intermediaries to remove links to third-party material, the Canadian order undermines the policy goals of Section 230 and threatens free speech on the global internet.

The case provides key insight into the evolving legal issues around global enforcement and governance.

Google, Inc. v. Equustek Solutions, Inc., 2017 WL 5000834 (N.D. Cal. November 2, 2017)

Written by Evan D. Brown, Attorney

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More under: Intellectual Property, Internet Governance, Law, Web

Categories: News and Updates

.Com Winners and Losers

Domain Name Wire - Fri, 2017-11-03 14:00

How registrars fared with .com in the most recent reports.

ICANN published the latest official .com transactions report from Verisign, which includes data by registrar for July 2017.

Here are the top registrars in terms of new .com registrations for July. The only change from June was PublicDomainRegistry and HiChina swapping places.

1. GoDaddy* 834,759
2. Tucows** 182,964
3. PublicDomainRegistry 128,033
4. HiChina 126,213
5. Namecheap 115,270

When it comes to net inbound transfers for registrars open to the public (transfer gains minus transfer losses), here are the top five gainers. This list excludes registrars that aren’t open to the public.

1. GoDaddy +21,728
2. HiChina +24,245
3. MAFF Inc (XZ.com) +7,434
4. Epik +7,214
5. Google +6,749

On the flip side, these five registrars saw the biggest net outflow of .com domain names due to transfers:

1. Tucows -20,981
2. Domain.com -10,810
3. Fabulous.com -8510
4. PublicDomainRegistry -5,450
5. EIMS.cn -4,701

*Includes GoDaddy and Wild West Domains **Includes Tucows and Enom *** Includes Network Solutions and Register.com


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Categories: News and Updates

Confusing Similarity of Domain Names is Only a 'Standing Requirement' Under the UDRP

Domain industry news - Thu, 2017-11-02 23:43

WIPO's newest overview of the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) succinctly states what decisions have made clear through the years: The UDRP's first test is only a "standing requirement."

Standing, under the law, simply means that a person or company is qualified to assert a legal right. It does not mean or imply that one will necessarily prevail on any claims.

The UDRP includes a well-known three-part test that all trademark owners must satisfy to prevail, but the first element has a low threshold. Specifically, that test requires a complainant to establish that the disputed "domain name is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which [it] has rights."

The 'Entirety of a Trademark'

UDRP decisions sometimes contain lengthy discussions about whether the "confusingly similar" test has been satisfied, but WIPO Overview 3.0 indicates that the analysis is really quite simple:

It is well accepted that the first element functions primarily as a standing requirement. The standing (or threshold) test for confusing similarity involves a reasoned but relatively straightforward comparison between the complainant's trademark and the disputed domain name.

This test typically involves a side-by-side comparison of the domain name and the textual components of the relevant trademark to assess whether the mark is recognizable within the disputed domain name....

While each case is judged on its own merits, in cases where a domain name incorporates the entirety of a trademark, or where at least a dominant feature of the relevant mark is recognizable in the domain name, the domain name will normally be considered confusingly similar to that mark for purposes of UDRP standing. [Emphasis added]

This summary doesn't differ dramatically from the previous version of WIPO's overview, which stated that the first test serves "essentially as a standing requirement." But the reference to a domain name containing the "entirety of a trademark" is new.

The WIPO overview "summarize[s] consensus panel views," so it is often seen as an important authority on substantive and procedural issues under the UDRP. Therefore, the references to the "entirety of a trademark" must be taken seriously.

'Subsumed Within' a Phrase

Because the confusing similarity test is only a standing requirement under the UDRP, trademark owners should have little difficulty (in appropriate cases, of course) convincing a panel that this element has been satisfied.

For example, in finding the domain name <richarddunhill.com> confusingly similar to the trademark DUNHILL, the panel rejected the respondent's argument that it "does not use the word DUNHILL standing alone but with the preceding word 'richard'," which "is distinctive and distinguishing." In finding confusing similarity, the panel said that the threshold imposed by the UDRP's first element "is conventionally modest, requiring an objective assessment of whether, for example, the trademark is clearly recognizable in the disputed domain name, even in the presence of additional words or strings."

Interestingly, the new WIPO overview deleted from the previous version a reference to a hypothetical example in which a domain name might not be confusingly similar to a trademark. The old overview said: "While each case must be judged on its own merits, circumstances in which a trademark may not be recognizable as such within a domain name may include where the relied-upon mark corresponds to a common term or phrase, itself contained or subsumed within another common term or phrase in the domain name (e.g., trademark HEAT within domain name theatre.com)."

One reading of this deletion is that a domain name containing a trademark is indeed confusingly similar even if the trademark is "contained or subsumed within another common term or phrase in the domain name" — an indication that the threshold for the first test under the UDRP is quite low.

Of course, a trademark owner's success on the first element of the UDRP does not determine the outcome of the case. Instead, as the WIPO overview makes clear, "Panels view the first element as a threshold test concerning a trademark owner's standing to file a UDRP complaint, i.e., to ascertain whether there is a sufficient nexus to assess the principles captured in the second and third elements."

Written by Doug Isenberg, Attorney & Founder of The GigaLaw Firm

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More under: Domain Management, Domain Names, Intellectual Property, Law, UDRP

Categories: News and Updates

Domain Industry Golfers Can Tee it Up to Help Injured Veterans in Southern California November 13

DN Journal - Thu, 2017-11-02 22:22
For several years now I've been telling you about a Charity Golf Tournament that raises money for injured and critically ill veterans. Well, it's that time again!
Categories: News and Updates

Enabling Privacy Is Not Harmful

Domain industry news - Thu, 2017-11-02 18:32

The argument for end-to-end encryption is apparently heating up with the work moving forward on TLSv1.3 currently in progress in the IETF. The naysayers, however, are also out in force, arguing that end-to-end encryption is a net negative. What is the line of argument? According to a recent article in CircleID, it seems to be something like this:

  • Governments have a right to asymmetrical encryption capabilities in order to maintain order. In other words, governments have the right to ensure that all private communication is ultimately readable by the government for any lawful purpose.
  • Standards bodies that enable end-to-end encryption that will prevent this absolute governmental good endanger society. The leaders of such standards bodies may, in fact, be prosecuted for their role in subverting government power.

The idea of end-to-end encryption is recast as a form of extremism, a radical idea that should not be supported by the network engineering community. Is end-to-end encryption really extremist? Is it really a threat to the social order?

Let me begin here: this is not just a technical issue. There are two opposing worldviews in play. Engineers don't often study worldviews or philosophy, so these questions tend to get buried in a lot of heated rhetoric.

In the first, people are infinitely malleable, and will be or should be shaped by someone, with the government being the most logical choice, into a particular moral mold. In this view, the government must always have asymmetry; if any individual citizen, or any group of citizens, can stand against the government, then the government is under direct existential threat. By implication, if government is the founding order of a society, then society itself is at risk.

In the second, the government arises out of the moral order of the people themselves. In this view, the people have the right to subvert the government; this subversion is only a problem if the people are ethically or morally incompetent in a way that causes such undermining to destroy the society. However, the catch in this view is this: as the government grows out of the people, the undermining of the government in this situation is the least of your worries. For if the society is immoral, the government — being made up of people drawn from the society — will be immoral as a matter of course. To believe a moral government can be drawn from an immoral population is, in this view, the height of folly.

What we are doing in our modern culture is trying to have it both ways. We want the government to provide the primary ordering of our society, but we want the people to be sovereign in their rights, as well. Leaving aside the question of who is right, this worldview issue that cannot be solved on technical grounds. How do we want our society ordered? Do we want it grounded in individuals who have self-discipline and constraint, or in government power to control and care for individuals who do not have self-discipline and constraint? The question is truly just that stark.

Now, to the second point: what of the legal basis laid out in the CircleID article? The author points to a settlement around the 3G standard where one participant claimed their business was harmed because a location tracking software was not considered for the standard, primarily because the members of the standards body did not want to enable user tracking in this way. The company stated the members of the standards body acted in a way that was a conspiracy. Hence the actions of the standards body fell under anti-trust laws.

Since there was a settlement, there was no actual ruling, and I'm not a lawyer, but the issues seem different in the case of encryption technology than what was considered in the case pointed to above (TruePosition, Inc. v. LM Ericsson Telephone Co., No. 11-4574 E.D. Pa. Oct. 4, 2012). In the case of encryption technology, it seems, to me, that the case would need to be somewhat different. Assume someone uses a piece of software that implements an encryption standard in the commission of a crime. Turn the software into a car, and the argument would need to look something like this:

Since the car used for the crime depended on tires that were made by a particular company for general commercial use, which depended on the specifications set out by a standards body made up of a number of tire manufacturers in order to allow for interoperability between the various manufacturers in the market, the standards body is responsible for the crime.

I'm just not certain this would be a very compelling argument; you need to take the responsibility from the criminal to the manufacturer, and then from the manufacturer to the standards body. So you would need to prove that the manufacturer created the product primarily for use in a criminal enterprise, and then that the standards body created the standard primarily in order to allow the successful manufacture of (inter-operable) software designed for criminal use. This seems to be a far different line of reasoning than the one used in the case given above.

For the argument against end-to-end encryption to stand, two things must happen. First, we must decide that we want the kind of society where we are essentially wards of an all-knowing state. Second, we must build some sort of legal theory that transfers criminal liability from the criminal to the manufacturer, and to the standards body, the manufacturer participates in through the manufacturer. I am not certain how such a legal theory might work, or am quite certain the unintended consequences of such a theory would be disastrous in many ways we cannot now imagine.

Written by Russ White, Network Architect at LinkedIn

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More under: Cybersecurity, Law, Networks, Policy & Regulation, Privacy

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EFF Warns ICANN Not to Engage in Censorship, Says It Should Stick to Technical Role

Domain industry news - Thu, 2017-11-02 17:52

A series of articles published by EFF, coinciding with ICANN's 60th meeting in Abu Dhabi this week, Jeremy Malcolm warns that domain name registrars, registries and ICANN can become "free speech week leaks" for online censorship. He writes: "ICANN appears to have voluntarily taken on further responsibility for addressing 'abuse involving' domain names through its appointment this year of a Consumer Safeguards Director with a background in law enforcement. EFF attended and reported on the first webinar held by the new Director, in which he downplayed the significance of his role, stating that it does not carry any enforcement powers. Yet a draft report of ICANN's Competition, Consumer Trust and Consumer Choice Review Team recommends that strict new enforcement and reporting obligations should be made compulsory for any new top-level domains that ICANN adopts in the future. ICANN's Non-Commercial Stakeholder Group (NCSG) has explained why many of these recommendations would be unnecessary and harmful." ICANN should maintain its current limited role in the technical administration of a secure and stable domain name system, Malcolm says. ICANN "should not pick up the censor's pen."

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LittleAcornsFostering.com case is worse than I expected

Domain Name Wire - Thu, 2017-11-02 17:03

Perhaps saying this domain was held for ransom is a fair characterization.

In September I wrote about a UK foster agency that forgot to renew its domain. It said the person who bought the expired domain was holding it for ransom by demanding £9,000 for its return.

The foster agency opted to file a UDRP instead of pay for the domain. It won the case, and the details certainly don’t make the person who bought the domain look good.

Little Acorns Fostering dug up dirt on registrant Al Perkins, and alleged that he frequently buys expired domains and then puts porn on them in an effort to get the former owners to buy the domain back.

According to the foster agency, Perkins pointed out that the foster agency’s emails could be captured. Ostensibly acting to be a broker for the new owner, he wrote:

For example they just reset the mx records to obtain your clients details then approach them with a better offer.

Then you have to question the value of your business and brand, is your business worth more than £8700 ?

It seems that the foster agency leaned toward paying a reduced price of £5000 but changed its mind. At that point, the panel writes:

“…Perkins” appeared to be upset by this turn of events claiming that the Complainant was behaving unethically in operating a business that made money from “poor little kids”, accusing the Complainant of “threatening and blackmailing” and stating that the Complainant would be reported to the police and the council “so you have your licences taken away from you immediately”.

4.13 Following what would appear to be a phone call, “Perkins Perkins” sent an email in which he accused the Complainant of being abusive, and then became abusive himself. In the penultimate paragraph he wrote:

“Tell your foul mouth wife to f[…] herself and you will never get the domain back on principal [sic].”

4.14 There then followed what can perhaps be characterized as a tirade of threatening emails one of which stated:

“Your company will be exposed along with you as abusers, kids should not be around that foul language under any circumstances.”

The decision states that at some point thereafter, the website resolved to a page with the word “Abuse” struck out in a red circle. (That page still resolves as of today, and it appears to be an unpaid stock image from FeaturePics.com.)

Some shenanigans ensued with Perkins saying the domain had been transferred to a different owner.

Yikes.


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Latest domain news at DNW.com: Domain Name Wire.

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Categories: News and Updates

VPN.com buyer wants to be the Hotels.com of VPN services

Domain Name Wire - Thu, 2017-11-02 13:37

Big domain name purchase is starting to pay off for VPN.com owner.

VPN.com was purchased for close to $1 million this year.

Many entrepreneurs have a story of chasing down their dream domain name, but few fought as long as Michael Gargiulo.

After four years of trying, Michael Gargiulo successfully acquired the domain name VPN.com from its original registrant in January 2017.

Gargiulo had his sights on VPN.com since he got traction on his anonymous browsing service ProxyServer.com. The service has been used by over five million people.

And while that’s a successful service, Gargiulo believes he can be even more successful with VPN.com. It took years of trying to finally secure it.

“He [the previous owner of VPN.com] was the original registrant of it in 1997,” Gargiulo said. “This guy had owned it for a very long time and he knew the VPN space was exploding. He was waiting for the right offer to come along.”

During the time between when Gargiulo first inquired about buying the domain to closing the deal, talk of VPNs exploded as internet security and privacy became part of the daily conversation. Searches for VPN on Google increased 10x during that time.

Gargiulo’s company paid close to seven figures for the domain name with the bulk of it up front in cash. He can’t disclose the specific terms until the middle of 2018.

The domain name provided instantaneous value, but in a somewhat different way than Gargiulo expected.

“In terms of respect inside the market and with customers that don’t even know us, they know exactly who you are and what’s on your site because of the domain name,” he said. “In terms of payback of the domain and how we’re monetizing it, we’re still figuring it out.”

The domain gets hundreds (and sometimes thousands) of type-in visitors per day, but Gargiulo said becoming the number one search result in Google for VPN is the ultimate goal.

VPN.com currently offers an in-house VPN, but Gargiulo is shifting the focus in the next couple of months. Competition in the space is fierce, and it will take millions of dollars of technology investment to compete. So VPN.com will become more of a comparison site for VPN services, similar to what Hotels.com is for hotel rooms.

DNW will check back in with Gargiulo when he can reveal the full details of the transaction next year.


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Latest domain news at DNW.com: Domain Name Wire.

The post VPN.com buyer wants to be the Hotels.com of VPN services appeared first on Domain Name Wire | Domain Name News & Website Stuff.

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Categories: News and Updates

Another 3-Letter .Com Leads This Week's Sales Chart - Year's Biggest .Info Sale Also Booked

DN Journal - Wed, 2017-11-01 22:24
Our latest weekly domain sales report is out. Once again a 3-letter .com tops the elite list but non .com gTLD fans also had something to be happy about.
Categories: News and Updates

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