Growth of top-level domains spells more risk of cyber threats

For good or ill, the Internet keeps growing, with 4.5 million new domain names added in the first three months of 2011. That brought the total to 209.8 million domain name registrations, a 2.2 percent increase in growth from the last quarter of 2010, according to the latest Domain Name Industry Brief from VeriSign.

VeriSign is the registry operator for the .com and .net top-level domains and keeps tabs on the domain name industry.

Related coverage:

The Protect IP Act is a bad idea

As the Internet gets bigger, some things will change

VeriSign warned that the expansion of new generic TLDs, approved by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, could provide an expanded target space for hackers. “As the DNS expands to make room for more TLDs, it is vital to remain vigilant against cyber threats that increasingly target the DNS,” the company said in releasing the report. “If the DNS is compromised, the entire Internet is at risk.” TLD operators must be prepared to defend against attacks with the ability to quickly detect and mitigate them in the cloud before the malicious traffics reach their networks.

The top gainers so far this year were .com, .de (Germany), .net, .uk and .org.

Overall, the country code TLDs grew by 81.7 million so far this year, which helped .uk, for the United Kingdom, push out .org as the fourth-largest TLD. Two other country code TLDs, .nl (Netherlands) and .eu (European Union) moved up one spot each to seventh and eighth, respectively, pushing .cn (China) from seventh to ninth.

About the Author

William Jackson is a Maryland-based freelance writer.

inside gcn

  • threat detection

    In fighting fraud, the only constant is change

Reader Comments

Mon, Jun 13, 2011

Use modern browsers that help block malicious sites automatically. See Safe Browsing is a service that cumulative details about malicious web sites in real-time from different sources and also uses dedicated crawlers to confirm the flagged pages. The data is obtainable through a public API to anyone concerned in using it. In fact, the service is at present being used to also defend Firefox and Safari users from browsing to malicious web sites.

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above

More from 1105 Public Sector Media Group