[DNS] domain name news - March 13

[DNS] domain name news - March 13

From: David Goldstein <goldstein_david§yahoo.com.au>
Date: Sun, 16 Mar 2008 22:14:42 -0700 (PDT)
Don't forget to check out http://auda.org.au/domain-news/ for today's edition of the complete domain news, including an RSS feed - already online!

Headlines from the March 17 edition of the news include:
The Internet's Space Shortage | Rising use of Internet challenges its capacity | Address by ICANN Chairman to Public Meeting on the Midterm Review of the JPA | .nz Dispute Resolution Service - Policy Review | The Secret China-U.S. Hacking War | Botnet scams are exploding | us: Bush calls for tighter cybersecurity | 'Akill' charged with University of Pennsylvania attack | Have People Stopped Clicking on Google Ads? Or did a Web-traffic firm get the numbers wrong? | Trade in web names worth millions | Casino.de sold for ?400,000

And see my website - http://technewsreview.com.au/ - for daily updates in between postings.


The domain name news is supported by auDA


us: Christians, Rockers and Pro-Choicers Testify for Net Neutrality

Battle Against Fast-Flux Botnets Intensifies

ICANN recommendations on fast-flux hosting not tough enough: experts

The Fable Of Front Running: ICANN Says 'No Evidence' But Network Solutions Is Sued In Class Action by Matthew Hall and Tyrilly Bolton

.Asia Landrush Closes with Half a Million Domain Name Applications [news release]

Opinion: Government and industry unite in cybercrime battle

DHS Holds Cyber Storm II Exercise to Further Cyber Security Preparedness and Response Capabilities [news release]

The genesis of Government cyber war games

Killing Domain Names May Be Oppressive, But Completely Legal

GoDaddy shuts down police rating Web site

The Snowe Bill - Pros and Cons by Jay Westerdal

A Free Speech Double Whammy: Flawed Anti-Phishing Bill Would Dilute Trademark Fair Use and Anonymity Protections

Fund.com sells for $10 million (almost)

Spitzer Scandal Erupts; Domain Names Registered

House panel explores Net neutrality antitrust law [IDG]
Congress may need to amend antitrust law to keep broadband providers from interfering with Internet traffic, the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee said today.

us: Christians, Rockers and Pro-Choicers Testify for Net Neutrality
Net neutrality "is a complicated subject, and almost any member of Congress who privately discusses it in a serious way concludes that it would be better not to implement regulations unless absolutely necessary," said Roger Cochetti, group director of U.S. public policy at CompTIA.

us: Politicos make new push for Net neutrality policing
An influential congressional committee is once again showing support for using U.S. antitrust laws to force broadband providers to treat network traffic in a nondiscriminatory manner.

The future of the 'Net, past and present
I've seen the future of the Internet, and it's recursive -- in more ways than one. There's an excellent new book out called Patterns in Network Architecture: A Return to Fundamentals (Prentice Hall) by the inimitable John Day, who was one of the original developers of Internet architecture. It's at least as compulsively readable and technically detailed as my other favorite network architecture book (Computer Networks, a Systems Approach, by Larry Peterson and Bruce Davie, now in its fourth edition).

APC Advocates Gender Balance in IGF
As members of the Internet community warm up for the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) due to open soon in Hyderabad, the Association of Progressive Communications (APC) has advocated for a balanced gender participation in the affairs of IGF.

Internet Governance Forum tackles e-crime
The first Internet Governance Forum (IGF) was held at the Houses of Parliament last week, with the group unveiling plans to tackle online crime by sharing information between law enforcement, ISPs and charities.


Battle Against Fast-Flux Botnets Intensifies
First there was fast flux, and now there?s double flux: a variant of the stealthy fast-flux hosting technique used by major bot herders that rapidly shifts malicious Web servers and domain name servers (DNS) from machine to machine to evade detection.

ICANN recommendations on fast-flux hosting not tough enough: experts
Security experts have expressed skepticism that recent recommendations from ICANN for combatting fast-flux hosting will do much to stop the practice, which is utilized by criminal bot herders to mask their activities.

The Fable Of Front Running: ICANN Says 'No Evidence' But Network Solutions Is Sued In Class Action by Matthew Hall and Tyrilly Bolton
In November, we wrote that the Security and Stability Advisory Committee (SSAC) of ICANN which administers domain names, had launched a probe into the practice "front running". Front running involves monitoring checks of a domain name?s availability and then registering that domain name address yourself so you can sell it to another party (usually the party checking for availability) at a profit.

ICANN Opened Comments on Domain Tasting Motion
The GNSO Council is considering the issue of "domain tasting", a term used to describe the case when someone registers a domain name and then tests to see if the name has sufficient traffic to provide more income than the annual registration fee (usually through pay-per-click advertising). If the name is deemed sufficiently profitable, it is kept.

 - (cc)TLD NEWS
am: Armenian Opposition under Attack
The Armenian authorities have strengthened their grip on the country, with the media operating under severe restrictions, dozens of anti-government activists in custody, and opposition candidate Levon Ter-Petrosian seeing his challenge to the recent presidential election result rejected by the constitutional court. ... According to the Armenian Internet Society, which issues domain names ending in ?.am?, a list of out-of-favour websites has been issued by the national security service. David Sandukhchian, director of the Centre for Information Law and Society, said that the security service had been exceeding its powers.

.Asia Landrush Closes with Half a Million Domain Name Applications [news release]
DotAsia Organisation announced today that a total of 473,633 domain registration applications were received within the 3-week Landrush period. Including Sunrise and .Asia Pioneer Domains, the number of applications totals to over half a million: 505,838. .Asia registry will Go Live on March 26, domain names will be available on a First-Come-First-Served basis.

Great interest in .rs domains
Some 6800 internet addresses were registered in the first day following release of the new Serbian .rs domain.

Opinion: Government and industry unite in cybercrime battle
This week, private industry, Federal, state and local, and even some international government organizations are joining forces in an exercise to fight cyber attackers -- not fending off actual attackers, but dealing with a cyberwar "worst-case scenario" designed to find our weaknesses before less friendly entities do. The exercise, Cyber Storm II, is sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security.

DHS Holds Cyber Storm II Exercise to Further Cyber Security Preparedness and Response Capabilities [news release]
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is conducting the largest cyber security exercise ever organized. Cyber Storm II is being held from March 10-14 in Washington, D.C. and brings together participants from federal, state and local governments, the private sector, and the international community.

The genesis of Government cyber war games
There'll be some nervous IT managers in Government departments in Wellington and in the offices of our big infrastructure providers around the country as their networks are poked and prodded by US officials posing as cyber criminals. It's all part of Cyber Storm II, electronic war games the US is conducting with its military allies, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada and New Zealand, who are also its partner in the ECHELON electronic surveillance network.

au: Telstra, CommBank, DoD in secret cyberwar games
In an unknown location, a handful of Australia's best known companies and government agencies are undertaking secret tests in a mock cyberwar, as the country's infrastructure comes under attack in a simulated online war named Cyber Storm II.

Australian Government Systems Under Attack
An Australian official today confirmed reports that the government's systems are under cyber attack, but he refused to speculate on the source. In announcing that Australia's participation in Cyber Storm II, an international simulation designed to test government and private defenses, Attorney-General Robert McClelland said the government "has detected attempted intrusions in respect to obviously government agencies," a report said.

Cyber terror: Australia faces the storm
Cyber Storm II, the international simulation of a coordinated attack on global cyber infrastructure, starts this week.

DHS? Cyber Storm II kicks off
The private sector owns more than three-quarters of the country?s critical infrastructure. A large-scale, successful, coordinated attack could cripple the country's economy. A cyberattack can originate in one country and pass through several others before reaching its target.

Government and industry unite in cybercrime battle
This week, private industry, Federal, state and local, and even some international government organizations are joining forces in an exercise to fight cyber attackers -- not fending off actual attackers, but dealing with a cyberwar "worst-case scenario" designed to find our weaknesses before less friendly entities do.

Killing Domain Names May Be Oppressive, But Completely Legal
... Setting aside arguments of morality and principle, both WikiLeaks and T&M should have seen it coming. Both entities made a mistake in choosing to register their domains with American registrars, knowing full-well that they would be within the reach of the American government. Why didn?t they register in another country? There are plenty of places they could have gone with their business, and many of those places are, at best, indifferent to American interests ? a list of .org registrars includes companies located in Pakistan, India, Barbados, Ukraine, and Singapore, among others. I?m sure registrars in any of those countries would be much slower to respond ? if they respond at all ? to U.S. authorities? wishes.

Wikileaks calls for a global boycott of Enom and Demand Media
Wikileaks has called for a global boycott of domain registrar Enom, its parent company Demand Media.

Wikileaks Calls for Boycott of Domain Registrar eNom by Edward Falk
In the aftermath of the shutdown of Wikileaks.org by a court order issued at the request of Swiss Bank Julius Baer, Wikileaks has called for the boycott of registrar eNom.

GoDaddy shuts down police rating Web site
Domain hoster Go Daddy has shut down a Web site that lets people criticize individual police officers saying it was using too much bandwidth. But the site owner says he is being censored after police complained.

GoDaddy Silences Police-Watchdog Site RateMyCop.com -- Update
A new web service that lets users rate and comment on the uniformed police officers in their community is scrambling to restore service Tuesday, after hosting company GoDaddy unceremonious pulled-the-plug on the site in the wake of outrage from criticism-leery cops.

Fox News loses domain name fights after late trade mark filing
Fox News Network has failed to win control over a domain name that is almost identical to one of its television station names because it did not register its trade marks early enough.

Internet model seeks injunction
A Lincoln woman who has worked as an exotic model and and is featured on the Internet wants a federal judge to order a company to give up a domain name she says is hers. Adrienne Meints said in a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Lincoln that the company purchased the domain HotAdri.com. without her consent.

Domain Scam: US Copyright Registry
I just received an email to my whois address with an official-looking notice from the so-called ?US Copyright Registry?. Looks official, sounds official, but it isn?t. It?s just the latest scam to target domain name owners.

 - IPv4/IPv6
Google IPv6 Conference 2008
Video recordings of Google's IPv6 conference held on January 29, 2008 have been posted on YouTube. The conference was part of Google Tech Talks and includes a panel discussion called "What will the IPv6 Internet look like?"

IPv6 faces trial by fire tonight
The Internet engineering community will be eating its own dog food tonight. For one hour, the 1,250 network experts at the Internet Engineering Task Force meeting will be able to access the Internet only through IPv6. The IETF created IPv6 in the mid-1990s, but this upgrade to the Internet's main communications protocol has not yet been widely deployed -- even by the technology's biggest proponents here. Network World National Correspondent Carolyn Duffy Marsan talked with IETF Chair Russ Housley about the group's IPv6 experiment, why the transition to IPv6 is taking so long, and whether the IETF leadership is starting to panic about IPv4 addresses running out. Here are excerpts from their conversation:

IPv6 was easier than I had expected by Leo Vegoda
Back in October I wrote about how my landlord provides an Internet connection with a private IPv4 address. I explained that I want to connect several devices and so I have installed my own NAT and now sit behind a ?double NAT?. The only problems I?ve had have been with some VoIP software that can?t jump multiple NATs.

The IPv6 experience: Are you experienced yet?
Now that ICANN is in the process of upgrading its root servers to handle IPv6 records, somebody has to get the word out to businesses about the benefits of the updated protocol.

Use of IPv4 Declines - Report
Despite the intentions of some stakeholders to accommodate the Internet Protocol version six (IPv6), reports disclosed that version four (IPv4) is on the decline curve in terms of usage.

What the U.S. is missing by ignoring IPv6
The fast growth also exposed how much of a burden the workaround is that's typically used to squeeze more devices onto the limited number of IPv4 addresses available: NAT (network address translation), which reuses IPv4 addresses across multiple devices within a local network, using smart routers to juggle which traffic goes where.

NTP soon to feature extra timeliness
Internet Engineer Task Force engineers are sharpening the Network Time Protocol's granularity of time measurements, as well as making the veritable time-synchronization standard compatible with version 6 of the Internet Protocol.

The Snowe Bill - Pros and Cons by Jay Westerdal
The new Senator Snowe Bill titled, ?Anti-Phishing Consumer Protection Act? is loved by a few companies that have famous brands however it is being protested loudly by some domain name investors and privacy groups. If I had to judge the bill just by the name I would be all for it. Who doesn?t want to take out a phisher trying to steal bank account information! However there is more to the bill then just the name.

A Free Speech Double Whammy: Flawed Anti-Phishing Bill Would Dilute Trademark Fair Use and Anonymity Protections
Congress is contemplating a so-called ?Anti-Phishing Consumer Protection Act? (APCPA) that takes an odd view of consumer protection. In the name of stopping phishing schemes, Senator Olympia Snowe has introduced S. 2661, a bill that would expand trademark law, limit consumer access to information about competitive products, and eviscerate key protections for anonymous speech. Co-sponsors are Senators Bill Nelson and Ted Stevens (yes, THAT Ted Stevens).

EFF: Anti-Phishing Bill ?A Free Speech Double Whammy?
Electronic Freedom Foundation, a respected organization for promoting free speech and consumer protection on the internet, has spoken out against Senator Snowe?s so-called Anti-Phishing bill, calling it ?A Free Speech Double Whammy.?

EFF: antiphishing bill may snag anonymous speech in driftnet
You do hate phishing, don't you? So does the federal government, but a new law intended to crack down on the practice is also raising charges that it will stomp on free speech and lead to increased corporate control of the Internet. Let's break down the bill known (fetchingly) as "APCPA."

Cease & Desist Sent to Domain Owner Based on Redirect Service
Anyone who owns generic acronym domain names is well aware of the possibility of receiving a cease & desist letter from someone claiming rights to it. This is particularly prevalent with three and four character domain names, for which any number of companies may hold a trademark or at least use the acronym.

Dark Blue Sea and Godaddy joined at the hip
I just received a press release from Dark Blue Sea (DBS) regarding a domain sales agreement with Godaddy.com. This agreement means that DBS has now secured one of the largest channels to market for their Domain Distribution Network (DDN).

Godaddy and Dark Blue Sea Strengthen Relationships
Dark Blue Sea, parent company of Fabulous.com have entered into a five year agreement with Godaddy to sell domain names from the Dark Blue Sea portfolio through Godaddy?s sales channels. The agreement also puts Godaddy in a position to become a major shareholder in DBS.

Firefox Domain Name Lookup Add-ons
There are a couple of extensions those searching for domain names can add to their Firefox browsers to help find domain names when browsing online. For example, you?re reading about the Elliot Spitzer use of prostitutes, and you think of a great domain name to register.

Fund.com sells for $10 million (almost)
Fund.com sold yesterday for US$9,999,950 in an all-cash transaction Clek Media announced. Clek Media also brokered the sale. The buyer is Fund.com Inc., a New York firm previously named Meade Technologies Inc. To date the buyer has revealed their plans for the domain mostly in filings with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

Fund.com sold for $10 Million by Jay Westerdal
Today is a big day, Fund.com sold for $10,000,000. Well technically it sold for $9,999,950 in an all-cash transaction, though I am not sure why $50 was withheld from making it an even $10M.

UNet.com Yields $100,000 to Top a Long List of Reported Domain Sales From the Past Fortnight
We're back after a week off to cover last week's T.R.A.F.F.I.C. West conference in Las Vegas (our comprehensive review of that event will be published on our home page by the end of the week). Given the 14-day span since our last column, you won't be surprised to hear that hundreds of new four, five and six figure sales have been reported since our previous trip to the plate. The lone surprise is that from among all of those sales, only one cracked the six-figure mark and that one - Unet.com, sold at Sedo.com for $100,000 to barely clear the bar.

Year's Biggest Sale To Date Leads the Weekly Domain Sales Parade
Illinois data recovery company ESS Data Recovery purchased DataRecovery.com for $1,659,000 this week in the largest domain sale reported thus far in 2008. It was also the year's second 7-figure sale, joining Cruises.co.uk ($1,099,798) at that lofty level. There were also a pair of six-figure sales this week. Florida-based Elysium Internet, Inc. purchased Auditors.com for $125,000 in a private transaction and Skyport.com produced $101,000 at Sedo.com.

Free Hotel Room for T.R.A.F.F.I.C Virgins
Rick Schwartz and Howard Neu are offering people who have never attended a T.R.A.F.F.I.C. conference the chance of a free hotel room at their upcoming conference in Orlando (May 20 - 24, 2008), with only a small string attached!

Spitzer Scandal Erupts; Domain Names Registered
Within minutes of the scandal involving New York Governor Eliot Spitzer, allegedly ?Client 9?, breaking in the New York Times, Nick Galbreath, a 37 year-old software engineer in Manhattan, registered the client9.com domain for $10.13 according to Wired. "The original story didn't name [Governor Eliot] Spitzer directly, but I thought [Client9.com] sounded catchy, so I bought it," Mr Galbreath told Wired.

Client 9 Domains Snatched Minutes After Spitzer Scandal Breaks
Client9_2Just minutes after the New York Times published a story online yesterday about a high-class prostitution ring and the involvement of so-called "Client 9," Nick Galbreath, a 37 year-old software engineer in Manhattan, registered the client9.com domain for $10.13.

Many Have Claimed To Be Recession-Proof, Few Have Managed It
Whenever the word recession crops up in the national discourse, so does the term recession-proof. Today, people are debating whether Google and Starbucks may be recession-proof, as well as domain names, Spam (the meat, not the digital junk), blogging, professional wrestling, lingerie and teenagers.

Ron Jackson Resigns from Bido.com - cites conflicts of interest in decision
Ron Jackson of DNJournal has always been known as ?Mr. Nice Guy? and a class act in the domain industry. He recently joined up with industry veterans including Sahar Sarid to start Bido.com, a domainer platform for managing domains, selling domains, and several other future services.

5 Ways To Use DomainTools
If you aren?t using DomainTools, here are 5 ways to get started.

Web companies track users' Internet activity hundreds of times per month
A new analysis of online consumer data shows that large Web companies are learning more than ever before the gritty details of what people search for and do on the Internet, gathering clues about the tastes and preferences of a typical user several hundred times a month.

Online Behavior Tracking: No Such Thing as Enough
Every time you go online, you leave electronic footprints -- and someone is following them. When you display a page, enter a search query, play a video or click on an ad online, that information is logged by the servers of the companies that own the site or serve the video or ad or search results. Those are some of the findings comScore came up with in response to a project it jointly worked on with The New York Times' Louise Story to find out how much data Web companies can collect from users.

Serving Up Television Without the TV Set
The "stupid computer" is a repeated target of the dimwitted office manager Michael Scott on "The Office." But the show itself may be motivating viewers to put down their remote controls and pick up their laptops. When the fourth season of "The Office," an NBC comedy, had its premiere in September, one in five viewings was on a computer screen instead of a television.

Why online anonymity is the last refuge of cowards and scoundrels by Andrew Keen
But the one issue over which [Jimmy] Wales and I did profoundly disagree was internet anonymity. Wiki technology undermines the authority of professional editors and enables anyone with an internet connection to automatically become an author. But when you do away with editorial gatekeepers, there is no way of checking the identity of your contributors. Thus, Wikipedia's content is created by a nameless and faceless army of potentially corrupt or ignorant contributors. Unlike Wales, I simply can't trust information when I don't know the identity of its authors. Rather than a right, I think Wikipedian editors have a responsibility to reveal who they are. As I told Jimmy Wales at our debate, I believe that Wikipedia will only become a genuinely reliable information resource when he changes the site's rules to force Wikipedians to reveal their real identities.

France wins EU approval to give Internet search engine project ?99 million [AP]
France on Tuesday won EU approval to give ?99 million (US$152 million) to several companies hoping to build a European rival to U.S. search giant Google Inc.

The world's 50 most powerful blogs
From Prince Harry in Afghanistan to Tom Cruise ranting about Scientology and footage from the Burmese uprising, blogging has never been bigger. It can help elect presidents and take down attorney generals while simultaneously celebrating the minutiae of our everyday obsessions. Here are the 50 best reasons to log on. The Huffington Post is number 1, followed by Boing Boing, Techcunch, Kottke and Dooce.

'Digital Universe' 10 percent bigger than predicted
IDC has measured the size of the "digital universe" -- all the digital data stored globally -- and it is 10 percent bigger than first predicted and will be 10 times bigger again by 2011. IDC said the scope of the digital universe has now reached 281 billion GB and its future growth will force enterprises to adapt to ever-increasing storage demands.

Study: amount of digital info > global storage capacity
An IDC research study sponsored by information management giant EMC provides insight into the explosive growth of digital information. IDC uses a complex formula to estimate the size of the "digital universe," the total volume of digital information that is created and replicated globally.

Third of online shops undermine consumer rights, says OFT
The OFT analysed over 500 UK shopping websites to see if they complied with consumer protection laws by, for example, including physical addresses on sites, telling shoppers of their rights and being transparent about pricing. It found that nearly a third of sites failed in one key regard. It said that 31% of sites appeared not to refund the full cost of returned goods, an integral part of European laws about distance selling.

Internet for porn, not politics: Ex Polish PM
Poles should not be allowed to vote online because the Internet attracts people who watch "pornography while sipping a bottle of beer," former prime minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski told his party's Web site. ... "I am not an enthusiast of a young person sitting in front of a computer, watching video clips and pornography while sipping a bottle of beer and voting when he feels like it," he was quoted as saying on his party's revamped Web site.

Spitzer's E-Escort Plight Shows Workings of Prostitution 2.0
Emperors_club With New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer allegedly caught nibbling the fruits of a high-class, tech-savvy prostitution ring, it's clearer than ever the world's oldest profession is doing a fine job of harnessing the latest technology.

Whitehall crackdown on bloggers and social networks after Civil Serf
Sir Gus O?Donnell, the Cabinet Secretary, is to set out new guidance to civil servants to cover blogging and online social networks following the demise of the ?Civil Serf? blogger, The Times has learnt.

Aussie uptake of Facebook soars by 1000% in the past year
Australians have gone Facebook crazy. In the past year the number of user accounts on the social networking site has increased by over 1000 per cent to 2.6 million users.
In February 2007, there were 220,000 active user accounts. Today that stands at 2.6 million. That is a 1081.8 percentage increase.

Report: More companies ban social networks, Web 2.0 sites
A report released by MessageLabs, a UK-based security vendor, found that nearly 20 percent of organizations blocked social networking and dating sites in February due to concerns about employee productivity and malware. In addition, the number of websites blocked by filters was nearly 47 percent, which, according to MessageLabs, should spur IT departments to update their electronic use policies to reflect newer Web 2.0 technologies.

Yahoo May Join Google-Led Social Networking Alliance
Yahoo intends to join OpenSocial, a Google-led alliance that is developing a common set of standards so developers can create programs that run on many social networks and other Web sites, according to a person with direct knowledge of Yahoo?s plans.

Bigger is better in monitors -- to a point
Two 20-in. monitors or one 24-in. screen are best for productivity, says researcher

Millions of Britain's PCs dumped at tips
Millions of serviceable computers in the UK end up in landfill sites rather than being recycled, a study has claimed. The research, sponsored by Fujitsu Siemens Computers (FSC), found that 12.5 million unwanted PCs and laptops have not been reused or recycled by their owners.

Pitcairn Island relays most spam per person
Pitcairn Island, the final South Sea island refuge of the Bounty mutineers, relays more spam per capita than any other nation. But with an estimated population of 48, perhaps it's not that surprising.

Pitcairn Islands is top rogue nation for relaying spam
The tiny British overseas territory of the Pitcairn Islands in the Pacific Ocean relays the most spam per person in the world.

Spam Takes a Vacation
If you're thinking of heading to a quiet Pacific island in order to escape spam, forget about it. Some of those islands are worse junk email offenders than the U.S., China, or Russia.

E-mail inventor: I didn't foresee spam
... Did Mr Tomlinson have any idea quite the havoc - not to mention large-scale criminal enterprise - his creation would be capable of unleashing? "Absolutely not. At that time, the number of people who used e-mail was very small - maybe between 500 to 1,000. So if you were getting spam, you'd know who was sending it. You'd be able to say to them: that's not a good thing to do."

us: Advertising Sent To Cellphones Opens New Front In War on Spam
The spam messages that have long plagued e-mail inboxes are now finding victims through a much more personal route: the cellphone. Text messages are the latest tool for advertisers and scammers to target consumers. But unlike junk e-mail that can be deleted with the click of a button, text-message spam costs money for the person who receives it and chips away at the mobile phone's aura of privacy.

Google: Spam, Virus Attacks to Get More Clever
Google's Postini team recommends enterprises guard against socially generated spam and virus attacks in 2008. Spam and virus threats to enterprise messaging security and compliance may level off this year compared to 2007, but social engineering techniques are evolving to challenge businesses and security software providers, according to a new report released by Google's Postini team.

Spammers feast on Gmail's CAPTCHA [IDG]
Spam originating from Google's Gmail domain doubled last month, showing spammers are still defeating the CAPTCHA ? the distorted text meant to thwart mass registration of email accounts and other website abuse.

Gmail falls prey to spam bots
Spammers have cracked the captcha mechanism Gmail uses to make sure you are a human before you can open an e-mail account, leading to a huge increase in the amount of spam sent from Gmail last month, security firm MessageLabs says.

Could the internet be Africa's saviour? by Andrew Keen
... We-Think [is] likely to be the most controversial book about the internet to be published in Britain this year. ... The internet will revolutionise innovation, Charles Leadbeater argues in We-Think. Collaborative websites will transform innovation from a selfish, individual preoccupation in to the socially responsible activity of the community. The internet will prioritise public interest over individual interest. The old Cartesian principle of "I think therefore I am" will be replaced by the communitarian credo of "We-Think therefore we are". The consequences of this technological revolution on the future of capitalism, private property, the law and politics will be epochal, Leadbeater promises us. We-Think is inspiring in its analysis of the impact of the internet on the less developed world. Leadbeater suggests that the collaborative internet will foster democracy, economic equality and social justice in Africa. For this insight alone, We-Think is
 thoughtful. I urge you to read it.

The law vs. online hate speech - Anonymous bullies must be held accountable by Andrew Keen
The cartoon isn't as amusing as it once was. "On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog," one Web-surfing canine barked to another in that 1993 classic from the New Yorker. Back then, of course, at the innocent dawn of the Internet Age, the idea that we might all be anonymous on the Web promised infinite intellectual freedom. Unfortunately, however, that promise hasn't been realized. Today, too many anonymous Internet users are posting hateful content about their neighbors, classmates, and co-workers.

Judge rules against accused spyware distributor [IDG]
A US judge has granted a request by the US Federal Trade Commission for a judgment against a company accused of distributing spyware and adware onto people's computers.

Penn law grad countersues over Web posts about women law students [AP]
A University of Pennsylvania law graduate who lost a lucrative job offer after he was linked to Web sites that crudely discussed female law students has countersued two of the women subjects. ... The lawsuits renew debate about whether anonymous Internet scribes should be outed -- and held legally responsible -- for malicious online postings.

nl: Nigerian internet scammers get jail time [Reuters]
A Dutch court has sentenced three members of a Nigerian gang to up to four years in prison for extorting tens of thousands of euros from victims who answered emails promising a stake in unclaimed inheritances.

Argentine Judge Orders Closure Of Bwin Site
A Buenos Aires judge has ordered Argentina?s Ministry of Foreign Affairs to shut down the bwin.com.ar site, following charges that the company has violated local laws by advertising its website extensively in the Argentine media without possessing the requisite licence. The lead prosecutor in the case has said that investigations may also be opened into two companies that have been providing payments solutions for Bwin?s Argentine subsidiary.

Password-Stealing Hackers Infect Thousands of Web Pages [IDG]
Hackers looking to steal passwords used in popular online games have infected more than 10,000 Web pages in recent days. The Web attack, which appears to be a coordinated effort run out of servers in China, was first noticed by McAfee researchers on Wednesday morning. Within hours, the security company had tracked more than 10,000 Web pages infected on hundreds of Web sites.

us: CDT launches health privacy initiative
Privacy needs to be a higher priority as the U.S. government and other groups push for adoption of health IT as a way to improve the country's healthcare system, said the Center for Democracy and Technology , which has launched a health privacy initiative.

R.E.M. to debut new album on Facebook application
The American band will release Accelerate as a stream available for sharing a week before the album hits the shops

REM launch new album on social networking app
Forget the traditional radio premiere: REM's new album, Accelerate, is set to debut on the social networking application iLike.

ie: "Year of filters" turning into year of lawsuits against ISPs
The Big Four record labels have taken an Irish ISP to court, seeking to keep P2P activity off of its network. Eircom, the largest broadband ISP in Ireland, was sued by the labels in the High Court of Ireland yesterday; the case has been assigned to Ireland's Commercial Court, which handles commercial litigation.

Judge to Viacom: No punitive damages in YouTube case
Viacom suffered a (slight) setback today in $1 billion lawsuit against YouTube. The two media titans are going toe-to-toe in a New York courtroom, but the judge recently ruled that Viacom cannot seek punitive damages against YouTube. Massive statutory damages, however, remain on the table.

Virtual demos over net censorship
Thousands of people are taking part in "virtual protests" against countries accused of censoring the internet. For its first Online Free Expression Day, media watchdog Reporters Without Borders (RSF) has created virtual versions of nine public spaces.

Reporters Without Borders launches Online Free Expression Day
Reporters Without Borders is asking Internet users to demonstrate virtually against countries that censor Internet freedom.

Media body accuses UNESCO of bowing to censors [Reuters]
A leading media watchdog accused a United Nations agency of "grovelling" to authoritarian governments by dropping sponsorship of a free speech day on Wednesday.

Real-name Registration To Be Adopted In Beijing Internet Cafes
According to Beijing Xicheng District's Culture Administration Enforcement Team, the eight urban districts of Beijing will adopt real-name registration at their netcafes in the first half of this year.

Japan to outlaw possession of child pornography
Japan is to bow to international pressure and ban the possession of child pornography, although the new law is expected to anger child welfare groups by exempting manga comics and animated films.

UNICEF calls on Japan to crack down on child pornography
Japan should ban possession of child pornography and crack down on animated films, comic books and computer games that show children being sexually exploited, UNICEF said Tuesday.

Zoning the Internet: A New Approach to Protecting Children Online by Cherly B Preston
I. INTRODUCTION Some movements generate a great deal of energy but seem to get no closer to their goal. The fight to save children and teens from Internet pornography has been one such endeavor. Weeks and years, impressive fortunes, and promising political careers have been consumed with good faith efforts to address this pressing problem. Statutes are drafted, passed, and litigated. Courts struggle to frame a proper test. The Supreme Court splits in pluralities. Statutes fail. All the while, academics, lawyers, and legislators churn arguments and ideas. Still, the problem grows.

Making Family-Friendly Internet a Reality by Cheryl B Preston
Finding a workable solution to the problem of underage access to Internet pornography is not as overwhelming as it may seem. Providing a meaningful choice for parents who want to keep pornography out of their homes is one way to protect children from the onslaught of the graphic, and often violent, sexual images readily available online. Defaulting to filters that are over- inclusive, underinclusive, constantly outdated, and easily circumvented106 ignores the problem and fails our children. Community Ports are a viable solution because they provide an opt- in choice to Internet users with minimal to no interference with the rights of those who choose to continue accessing legal sexual material by leaving their Internet access service as it currently exists. The technology for zoning the Internet exists. ICPA is written to provide a regulatory framework that allows individual Internet ISP customers a choice at the receiving end of the Internet.

us: State Senate panel passes 'cyber-bullying' bill inspired by Missouri teen's suicide
Protective legislation sparked by a 13-year-old girl's suicide after she received harassing e-mails and MySpace.com postings passed a state Senate panel Tuesday.

au: MySpace man urges education on pedophile hazard [AAP]
Children should be aware of pedophiles using online social networking sites, but cyber grooming is rarer than the community believes, a crime expert says. Speaking at today's ID and Access Management Summit in Sydney, MySpace Safety and Security National Director Rod Nockles said education from an early age was the key to reducing cyber crime.

Girl 'run over' after school feud [AFP]
Two teenagers have faced court after an alleged schoolyard feud escalated into cyber-stalking and ended with a 15-year-old girl being struck by a car.

Australien startet Aufkl?rungsstudie zu Cyber-Mobbing
Australien hat eine Gro?offensive gegen Internet-Mobbing gestartet. Da das Problem stetig zunehme und immer mehr Kinder und Jugendliche Opfer von beleidigenden SMS, E-Mails oder erniedrigenden Fotos im Internet w?rden, hat die westaustralische Regierung nun eine umfassende Studie in Auftrag gegeben.

Australian government wants e-mail spying to last for longer
Amendments to the Federal Telecommunications Interception Act will be put before the House of Representatives today, as the government seeks to extend the limit of a sunset clause which allows authorities to monitor internal and government communications without a specific warrant. The federal government is hoping to extend current provisions in the act which permit various government and security agencies to intercept communications sent over government networks -- including those sent by the public to the government -- without an interception warrant until 12 December 2009, after they were originally set to expire on 13 June this year.

Europe Backs Google Bid to Acquire DoubleClick
European regulators on Tuesday approved Google?s acquisition of DoubleClick, a significant player in the $37 billion online advertising business, brushing aside complaints that the combination would allow Google to extend its Internet dominance.

Google cleared for DoubleClick takeover
The European Commission has cleared Google's $3.1bn (?1.5bn) takeover of online advertising network DoubleClick. After a four-month investigation, the EC concluded that the merged business would not be able "to engage in strategies aimed at marginalising Google's competitors".

Google Is Cleared to Purchase Ad Firm
European regulators approve Google's proposed $3.1 billion acquisition of Web-advertising giant DoubleClick, a cyber-marriage that would combine their abilities to track individuals' private lives and interests online.

EU threatens WTO action over U.S. ban on Internet gambling [Bloomberg]
The European Union threatened Monday to lodge a complaint at the World Trade Organization over U.S. laws that bar gambling Web sites, saying the rules might break global rules by discriminating against companies based in the European bloc.

EU probes U.S. online gambling crackdown [Reuters]
The European Union launched an investigation Monday into whether U.S. prosecutions of foreign online gambling companies are discriminatory, possibly paving the way for action at the World Trade Organization.

EU Probes U.S. Online Gaming Enforcement [IDG]
The European Commission has agreed to look into a complaint filed with it last year by a London gambling trade group that claims the U.S. is unfairly discriminating against European online gambling companies.

Democrats refuse immunity for warrantless wiretappers
Democrats in the US House of Representatives defied President Bush on Tuesday by refusing to pass an overhauled surveillance law that shields telecommunication companies from lawsuits alleging they aided government eavesdropping without the required court order.

House Democrats refuse to give telecoms immunity, seek warrantless wiretapping investigation
Locked in a standoff with the White House, House Democrats on Tuesday maintained their refusal to shield from civil lawsuits telecommunications companies that helped the government eavesdrop on their customers without a secret court's permission.

us: NSA shifts to e-mail, Web, data-mining dragnet
The National Security Agency was once known for its skill in eavesdropping on the world's telephone calls through radio dishes in out-of-the-way places like England's Menwith Hill, Australia's Pine Gap, and Washington state's Yakima Training Center.

Google could be superseded, says web inventor
Google may eventually be displaced as the pre-eminent brand on the internet by a company that harnesses the power of next-generation web technology, the inventor of the World Wide Web, Tim Berners-Lee, has said.

What Google wants is to condemn Microsoft to the electric chair
The dominant technology company of its day finds itself threatened by an upstart competitor that is seizing control of a powerful new network. Microsoft v Google? No, General Electric (GE) v Westinghouse. The continuing Yahoo takeover battle has pushed into public view a broader business conflict that's been simmering for a couple of years. The internet giant Google has been chipping away at Microsoft's hold on the personal computer industry, and Microsoft has been struggling to counter Google's growing hold over our PCs. But this high-tech war is not without precedent. A similar fight between American industrial titans played out more than a century ago.

Wikipedia's tin-cup approach wears thin
The nonprofit website needs to raise funds, but it resists selling ads: The new headquarters of one of the world's most popular websites is 3,000 square feet of rented space furnished with desks and chairs bought on the cheap from EBay and Craigslist.

Google to media companies: We're your friend [IDG]
Traditional media companies should see Google as a friend willing to help them take advantage of online opportunities and not as an enemy that competes with them. ... Fears that Google will morph into a media company that produces content are completely unfounded, he said, responding to questions from a Bear Stearns analyst. "That's absolutely not the case for us," Eun said during the presentation, which was webcast.

$5 billion needed to sort out Kiwi broadband
A privately-funded think tank says New Zealand is being left a long way behind other countries as it waits for Telecom to develop faster broadband services.

'Swirl' abuse suspect trial due
A suspected paedophile known as Mr Swirl because of the way he allegedly disguised his face in photographs is set to go on trial in Thailand. Christopher Neil, a Canadian, denies charges of abusing two underage boys.

Pedophilia Suspect on Trial in Thailand [AP]
A Canadian arrested last year in a worldwide manhunt after Interpol unscrambled his swirled digital images from Internet photos went on trial Monday in Thailand, accused of sexually abusing a 9-year-old boy.

30 Israelis arrested on child porn charges [UPI]
Israeli officials, acting on tips from Interpol, said they arrested 30 Israeli men Wednesday on suspicion of downloading child pornography from the Internet.

au: Officer had 8000 child porn shots 'by mistake'
A Queensland police officer caught with more than 8000 child porn images on his home computer has avoided spending any time in jail. Thomas James Anthony Wilson, 25, pleaded guilty in Brisbane's District Court today to possessing the lewd material, including pictures of boys as young as 10 engaging in sex acts.


(c) David Goldstein 2008

David Goldstein
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