Megaupload Domains Seized by FBI Now Link to Scam Ads and Malware Due to Renewal Failure

Sean Gallagher reporting in Ars writes: "Earlier this week, something suspicious started happening with Web addresses related to sites seized by the FBI from Megaupload and a number of online gambling sites. Instead of directing browsers to a page with an FBI banner, they started dropping Web surfers onto a malicious feed of Web advertisements… Based on evidence collected by Ars, it appears someone at the FBI's Cyber Division failed to renew the domain registration..."

FTC Puts Burden Back on ICANN Concerning .Sucks Dilemma

Kieren McCarthy reporting in The Register writes: "The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has responded to questions over the legality of .sucks domain pricing with a three-page "I told you so" letter to domain name overseer ICANN… 'You ask that the Federal Trade Commission assess whether these actions by Vox Populi would violate any laws or regulations enforced by the FTC,' notes FTC chairwoman Edith Ramirez in her response, before pointing out that not only did the FTC see this sort of thing coming but repeatedly raised its concerns with ICANN and was roundly ignored."

China’s New Law Could Severely Damper Domain Name Registrations

Trevor Little reporting in the World Trademark Review writes: "The Chinese government has announced that registries and registrars will have to meet a number of conditions and obtain the approval of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) before being allowed to engage in commercial and operational activities in China. With just 14 top-level domains (TLDs) approved to date, it means that the race is on to ensure that offerings are not shut out of the Chinese market. Crucially, the rules also apply to existing TLDs such as '.com', which has not yet been approved."

Phishers Continue Targeting Companies, But Limited Interest in New gTLDs: APWG

New companies are constantly being targeted by phishers, with some phishers attacking targets where consumers may least expect it while the ten companies that are targeted most often by phishers are attacked constantly, sometimes more than 1,000 times per month. These are some of the findings of the Global Phishing Survey for Second Half of 2014, released by the Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG) on Wednesday.

Unauthorised Access To ICANN New gTLD and GDD Portals Not Quite As Serious As First Thought

ICANN has released the results of the second phase of its investigation into the improper access to the the New gTLD Applicant and GDD (Global Domains Division) portals, first reported on 1 March 2015. ICANN now believes that over 60 searches were made resulting in the unauthorised access of more than 200 records using a limited set of user credentials.

Phishing in the New gTLDs

The new Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG) Global Phishing Survey has just been released. Written by myself and Rod Rasmussen of IID, the report is the "who, what, where, when, and why" look at phishing, examining the second half of 2014. The report has many findings, but here I'll concentrate on the new gTLDs.

The second half of 2014 was when an appreciable number of new gTLDs entered general availability and started to gain market share. Phishing in the new gTLDs started slowly and is rising. We expect to see phishing levels in them rise further, and predict that a small number of these new TLDs will attract significant numbers of malicious registrations.

Phishing can be on domain names registered by phishers, and can be on compromised (hacked) domains, where the phishers broke into the web servers. As of December 2014, the new gTLDs had less phishing relative to the legacy gTLDs and ccTLDs. But this was to be expected, since the new gTLDs are very young and didn't have a lot of web sites that can be compromised by phishers. As they mature and garner more adoption, more new gTLDs will inevitably see more of their domains compromised for phishing, and phishing levels in the new gTLDs as a group may approach levels see in ccTLDs and the legacy gTLDs.

From 1 July to 31 December 2014:

About 295 new gTLDs opened for registration by the public. Phishing occurred in 56 of those new gTLDs. A total of 454 new gTLD domain names were used for phishing. Almost two-thirds of the phishing in the new gTLDs — 288 domains — was concentrated in the .XYZ registry. (Of the 335 maliciously registered domains, 274 were in .XYZ.) This is the first example of malicious registrations clustering in a new gTLD, and we are seeing more examples in 2015.

The expansion of the TLD space is creating new locations where phishing occurs in the DNS. Cyber-criminals have always moved from TLD to TLD over time, especially when they find low prices or vulnerable registries. What it means is that monitoring and mitigation efforts by registries and registrars matter, and all new gTLD operators need to remain vigilant about phishing.

Two important notes:

Into 2014, cybercriminals were able to get cheaper domain names in legacy TLDs. But the TLD market is now more crowded and competitive than at any time in history, and some registries are competing aggressively on price. Some new gTLDs are dropping their prices lower than .COM and other generally available TLDs, and that will attract phishing and other kinds of abuse. Tens of thousands of domains in the new gTLDs are being consumed by spammers, and are being blocklisted. So while relatively few new gTLD domains have been used for phishing, the total number of them being used maliciously is much higher.

The new report contains statistics for all TLDs, including number of domains used, uptimes, and more.

Written by Greg Aaron, President, Illumintel Inc. and Co-Chair of the APWG's Internet Policy Committee

Daily Domain Sales 05-24-2015 lead by at $30,050 on DropCatch sold for $30,050 on DropCatch.

Top Domain Sales on May 24, 2015 are :  –  $30,050  –  $5,555  –  $1,995  –  $1,712  –  $1,700  –  $1,641  –  $1,525  –  $1,495  –  $1,200  –  $1,175  –  $1,100  –  $1,100  –  $1,100  –  $1,020  –  $730  –  $700  –  $654  –  $610  –  $605  –  $604  –  $603  –  $591  –  $562  –  $560  –  $560  –  $549  –  $521  –  $510  –  $500  –  $500  –  $464  –  $432  –  $424  –  $420  –  $420  –  $410


Marketplace-wise Sales

DropCatch  –  $30,050  –  $654  –  $610  –  $562  –  $424  –  $420


Flippa  –  $5,555  –  $1,995  –  $700  –  $605


NameJet  –  $1,712  –  $1,200  –  $1,100  –  $1,100  –  $1,020  –  $604  –  $560  –  $560  –  $549  –  $521  –  $500  –  $410


BuyDomains  –  $1,700  –  $1,641  –  $1,100


GoDaddy  –  $1,525  –  $1,495  –  $1,175  –  $730  –  $603  –  $591  –  $510  –  $500  –  $464  –  $432  –  $420

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