Dot-Name Becomes Cybercrime Haven
Ryan Singel writes on Wired News:
The company that controls the .name registry is charging for access to domain registration information, a step that security researchers say frustrates their ability to police the internet and creates a haven for hackers who run internet scams.More here.
When security researchers investigate spam and phishing activity on the internet, they rely on special Whois directories, which list the owner of a domain name, their hosting service and their contact information.
They can use the information to track down who is responsible for a particular scam and to notify innocent webmasters if a portion of their site has been hijacked by black-hat hackers.
ICANN, which sets the rules for the internet's top-level domain names such as .com and .net, has traditionally required registrars to make Whois data publicly searchable as a condition of the companies' right to sell domain names.
But Global Name Registry, or GNR, which administers domain names ending in .name (that are intended for use by individuals e.g., johndoe.name), won the right to create tiered levels of Whois access, where public searches show very little information beyond what registrar sold the name and what name servers the site uses.