VeriSign will issue security briefings

VeriSign Inc. has started issuing quarterly security briefings on the state of Internet usage, security and fraud trends.

The reports will draw data from the operational data of the Mountain View, Calif., company's domain name services and online transactional support services.

According to Stratton Sclavos, VeriSign chairman and chief executive officer, the company is in a unique position to discover large-scale usage trends on the Internet.

The company hosts two of the 13 Internet root servers around the globe. These servers process 10 billion DNS requests a day, the company said. The company also offers online payment services used by 94,000 businesses.

'The larger the data set, the better picture you can get of what is happening,' Sclavos said.

Other vendors, such as Symantec Corp., offer Internet security reports as well. But these reports are often limited to secondary sources based on the company's own products, said Michael Aisenberg, director of government relations for VeriSign.

Sclavos said that only recently has VeriSign started to analyze its Internet traffic. Already, it has found some surprising results. For instance, VeriSign has noticed that both online fraud and distributed-denial-of-service attacks tend to come from the same parts of the world.

VeriSign has noted that a lot of this malicious activity emanates from countries such as Bulgaria, Romania, South Korea and parts of India.

'This is a new phenomena,' Sclavos said. Online fraud and denial-of-service attacks were formerly thought to be two independent activities.

The data VeriSign collects includes the number and the locations of DNS requests as well as the IP addresses of online transactions.

The briefings will be free to the public and posted online, Sclavos said. The company also will use the data for its managed security services to prepare for emerging security threats.


About the Author

Joab Jackson is the senior technology editor for Government Computer News.

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