[DNS] domain name news - 2 July - full version

[DNS] domain name news - 2 July - full version

From: David Goldstein <goldstein_david§yahoo.com.au>
Date: Wed, 1 Jul 2009 20:57:09 -0700 (PDT)
Don't forget to check out http://www.auda.org.au/domain-news/ for the archive of the last 3 months of the news.

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


The domain name news is supported by auDA


Changing domains: Twomey calls it a day at ICANN

Net address change chaos feared

Beckstrom charts ICANN's future

Beckstrom unfazed by challenges at ICANN

ICANN says Web filters will "embarrass" Aussie govt

ICANN chief refutes US control

New ICANN Chief Eager to Mediate Internet Policy Wars [AP]

Who Needs More TLDs? by John Levine

Chinese registrars need rap on knuckles, expert says [IDG]

Feature: Is NZ ready for IPv6?

Public Comment Encouraged on Revised GNSO Stakeholder Group Charters
As part of the comprehensive GNSO Improvements effort, last year the ICANN Board approved the formation of four new GNSO Stakeholder Groups (SGs). After considering proposed SG Charters that were submitted by the community and posted for public comment , the ICANN Board passed a Resolution in May directing its Structural Improvements Committee (SIC) and ICANN Staff to revise the SG Charters to make them consistent with the Board?s GNSO Improvements Report (and related Resolutions).

Community Comment Invited on Proposed Bylaw Amendments Related to Restructuring of the GNSO Council
Implementation of the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO) Review/Improvements process requires the amendment of a substantial number of the ICANN Bylaws to reflect new GNSO structures, processes and mechanisms. Today, a packaged set of draft Bylaws and additional Staff recommendations is being posted for Public review and comment so that the ICANN Board can move forward with Bylaw amendments as soon as practicable.

Changing domains: Twomey calls it a day at ICANN
After 11 years as head of one of the world's most ambitious political experiments, outgoing ICANN president and chief executive Paul Twomey says he is ready for something else.

Net address change chaos feared
The international community fears that major changes to the world's internet addressing system being attempted by its peak regulator will destabilise the global network. ICANN, which regulates addresses, is attempting three major projects that will greatly expand the number and type of internet addresses (domain names) that it can make available.

Beckstrom charts ICANN's future
ICANN'S incoming chief, Rod Beckstrom, has worked in brokering peace deals on the Pakistan-India border but says keeping the peace among international internet regulator "tribes" will be much harder.

Beckstrom unfazed by challenges at ICANN
When Rod Beckstrom accepted the top job at ICANN last week, a former Homeland Security Department colleague warned him that his tenure as director of the National Cybersecurity Center was a walk in the park compared to being CEO of the nonprofit group that oversees the Internet address system.

ICANN says Web filters will "embarrass" Aussie govt
An ICANN chief has said the Australian government will ?embarrass itself? if it pushes ahead with plans to install a national Internet content filter.

ICANN chief refutes US control
The new ICANN chief has poured cold water on claims the organisation is resisting a break from alleged US oversight.

ICANN CEO Affirms Free, Open Internet
Rod Beckstrom, the new ICANN CEO says the Internet must be a free-flowing source of information.

Beckstrom Ready For ICANN Challenges
When Rod Beckstrom accepted the top job at the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers last week, a former Homeland Security Department colleague warned him that his tenure as director of the National Cybersecurity Center was a walk in the park compared to being CEO of the nonprofit group that oversees the Internet address system.

Companies File Trademarks for New Top Level Domain Names
Companies are filing with the United States Patent and Trademark Office for service marks related to new TLDs. For example, Top Level Domain Holdings, Ltd has filed trademarks for .movie, .kids, .books, .buy, .baby, .poker, .golf, and .casino. (Top Level Domain Holdings is an investor in new TLD consulting firm Mind + Machines and dotNYC, LLC.) 

An Open Letter to Rod Beckstrom
Congratulations, Rod. You?ll be the new CEO of ICANN. You have your work cut out for you. Rightly or wrongly, ICANN is a punching bag for many grievances. As Michael Palage pointed out at the last ICANN meeting, ICANN will likely be subject to many lawsuits over the next couple years. Here are a few suggestions as you prepare to take over the reins.

IRT: Classic Case Study of How Not to Sell a Plan
Implementation Recommendation Team (IRT) was set up by trademark interests to come up with a way to protect trademark owners during the launch of new top level domain names. The process by which it was set up and operated could be a case study in how not to get buy-in for a new idea.

ICANN CEO Affirms Free, Open Internet
Rod Beckstrom, the new ICANN CEO says the Internet must be a free-flowing source of information.

ICANN International?
OK, this may sound like a geek-only topic, but it could have a severe effect on everyone in the world who accesses the Internet. In fact, it couild have a devastating effect on the Internet as we know it, period. Pardon me while I lapse into Geek-Speak to try to explain why this is such an important and potentially frightening subject.

New ICANN Chief Eager to Mediate Internet Policy Wars [AP]
The Internet agency with key oversight of the monikers behind every Web site, email address and Twitter More about Twitter post named former U.S. cybersecurity chief Rod Beckstrom Friday as its next chief executive.

Beckstrom Selected As ICANN Chief
Former Homeland Security Department official Rod Beckstrom -- who headed the department's National Cybersecurity Center -- has been named the new president and chief executive officer of ICANN, a nonprofit group that oversees the Internet address system.

ICANN picks up former Cybersecurity chief
The ICANN has appointed Rob Beckstrom, a former director of the US National Cybersecurity Center (NCSC), as its new president and chief executive officer.

ICANN taps former cybersecurity chief as CEO
Internet address manager ICANN has appointed former US government security official Rod Beckstrom as its new CEO.

Internet security expert Rod Beckstrom named as the ICANN CEO
Internet founders and leaders are joining industry executives and government officials in praising the selection of Rod Beckstrom as the new Chief Executive Officer and President of ICANN.

Icann appoints new head
US internet entrepreneur Rod Beckstrom is the new head of Icann, taking over from Australian Paul Twomey.

Rod Beckstrom confirmed to lead ICANN
At its 35th international meeting today in Sydney ICANN confirmed the appointment of Rod Beckstrom as its chief executive officer and president.

ICANN picks up former Cybersecurity chief
ICANN has appointed Rob Beckstrom, a former director of the US National Cybersecurity Center (NCSC), as its new president and chief executive officer.

New ICANN boss named
Rod Beckstrom, who served as head of the Department of Homeland Security's National Cyber Center, has been named the new chief executive of ICANN.

Former cybersecurity chief takes over at web address manager ICANN
Rod Beckstrom, the former director of the U.S. National Cybersecurity Center, has been named CEO and president of ICANN, the nonprofit organization that manages the assignment of domain names and IP addresses.

Former US Cybersecurity Chief to Lead ICANN
The ICANN, the private not-for-profit organization governing domain names, has hired former US Cybersecurity Chief Rod Beckstrom as its new CEO. He will be replacing current CEO Paul Twomey, who will remain as president until the end of the year.

Threat Level Privacy, Crime and Security Online
Rod Beckstrom, the government?s former top cybersecurity official who resigned earlier this year to protest the NSA?s efforts to wrestle control of cybersecurity from DHS, has landed a new job as CEO of ICANN.

.BAIRES, .MUNICH, .ARAB? real TLD initiatives or just rumours?
Reading about a new gTLD initiative or just hearing it mentioned doesn't necessarily make it real. So if anyone has any bona fide information on projects like .BAIRES (for Argentina's Buenos Aires), .MUNICH or .ARAB, I'd love to hear from you.

.SELL, .WIKI? new gTLDs on alternative roots or just another scam?
Came across this little gem of a website the other day. I suppose it was inevitable that the new gTLDs would attract people who don't have a problem being economical with the truth.

ICANN Head Refutes Claims for US Control
The newly named CEO and president of ICANN has refuted claims the organization is trying to evade US oversight, according to a report by ComputerWorld.

Who Needs More TLDs? by John Levine
ICANN's Sydney meeting has come and gone, with the promised flood of new TLDs claimed to be ever closer to reality. Does the world need more TLDs? Well, no. Way back in the mid 1990s, it seemed obvious that Internet users would use the DNS as a directory, particularly once early web browsers started to add .COM to words typed in the address bar. This led to the first Internet land rush, with heavy hitters like Procter and Gamble registering diarrhea.com in 1995.

Sharing ICANN Can Be Win-Win for the United States by Alex Tajirian
With the Internet's global reach and importance showing exponential growth, pressure on the United States to share control of ICANN is mounting. A number of experts believe that the question is simply how much the United States should give up and how soon. This essay argues that "giving up" can be a win-win solution; i.e., control sharing is not a zero-sum game. Nevertheless, the United States does need to be more vigilant in managing Internet uncertainty.

Will ICANN Ban Top Level DNS Wildcarding?
Some registrars use wildcard DNS systems to redirect users to their own sites when a DNS lookup fails in such cases as a non-existent domains. ICANN's Security and Stability Advisory Committee (SSAC) wants to ban the practice.

Companies start 'domain name battle'
Companies are attempting to file trademarks for top level domain names (TLD), even though applications are yet to be accepted, it has been reported.

New Top Level Internet Domains - To Be Or Not To Be? [Intellectual Property Watch - sub req'd]
Now even trademark owners and large businesses do not really agree on the planned extension of the internet domain name system to include hundreds of new TLDs like .com.

.EU Coming with Cyrillic and Greek Characters
In a move to allow domain names to be registered and accessible to as many people in the European Union as possible, the European Commission has announced speakers of Bulgarian and Greek will soon be able to have .eu websites in their own languages.

.Eu Web addresses can be written in Cyrillic, Greek letters [IDG]
The .eu TLD (top-level domain name) for Web sites allows non-ASCII characters in its Web addresses, after it opened up the TLD to addresses written in Cyrillic and Greek letters, the European Commission said Friday.

'.eu' domain extended to Cyrillic, Greek alphabets
The European Commission last week (26 June) announced plans to make it possible to register websites under the .eu domain using Cyrillic and Greek scripts, allowing individual and business users alike to use .eu in all 23 official EU languages.

Domain name .eu expands into EU alphabets
The .eu domain name is set to become available in the Greek and Cyrillic alphabets.

EC adds Cyrillic, Greek language support to .eu domain [sub req'd]
The European Commission has adopted new EU rules to enable internet users and businesses to websites under the .eu domain name using the characters of all the 23 official languages of the European Union, including Cyrillic and Greek scripts.

IH&RA to support ?dotHOTEL?
The International Hotel & Restaurant Association (IH&RA) has announced its support for dotHOTEL, the company which will register ?.hotel? as a new top-level domain for the global hotel industry with ICANN. Hotels and the hotel industry worldwide will then be able to register their brands in an unambiguous and trusted namespace, such as international, domestic chains and independent hotels ?.hotel?.

300,000 .MX Domain Name Registrations As Registrations Grow Rapidly
NIC M?xico has announced the .MX ccTLD reached 300,000 registered domain names recently, with the number of registrations today standing at 309,112. Of these, 58,000 domain names registered in 2009 alone showing a rapid growth for the ccTLD.

NIC Mexico reaches 300,000 domain name registrations [news release]
NIC Mexico (Network Information Center Mexico), responsible of the administration of .MX ccTLD, announces that has reached 300,000 domain name registrations under .MX (including in this number all the current classifications .com.mx, .net.mx, .org.mx, .edu.mx, .gob.mx and .mx).

.MX domains to grow up
It seems that the global crisis has not arrived at the Mexican virtual world. At least, it is what NIC Mexico stats demonstrate. The report shows that domains acquisition with purposes of creating .MX web pages was increased in 20.6% in the first quarter of this year, comparing to the same period of 2008.

.us overlooked
The boom in ccTLDs over the past year has me paying more attention to America's long overlooked official country code extension - .us. I have always felt there was a great deal of potential there and over the years have invested accordingly, but it has been a long and winding road.

Chinese registrars need rap on knuckles, expert says [IDG]
A computer security expert is calling for action against two Chinese companies that he and other analysts allege are facilitating spam and cybercrime on the Internet.

Jackson's death unleashes barrage of online scams [AP]
... Registrations of domain names related to Jackson have spiked since the pop icon died Thursday afternoon. A leading registration company, GoDaddy.com, said it registered about 7,500 such names since then. Actress Farrah Fawcett, who died the same day, got about 100 domains in the same period. GoDaddy said, however, that it had yet to get any complaints that any of those addresses were used for scams.

Michael Jackson's death spurs domain-name explosion
... Within hours of Michael Jackson's death, a record number of people registered Internet domain names with GoDaddy.com honoring the late pop star. GoDaddy.com, a Scottsdale-based registrar, tallied 9,803 Jackson-related Web names between 1 p.m. Thursday, the time Jackson was taken to the hospital, and 1 p.m. today.

- IPv4/IPv6
Feature: Is NZ ready for IPv6?
It?s no news that the pool of available Internet Protocol version 4 (IPv4) addresses is running out. Thanks to the internet growing rapidly with increased broadband uptake, legacy over-allocations of blocks and with no effort to conserve remaining routable IPv4 address space, estimates say by 2011, or as early as the end of next year, none will be left.

Talk.com Domain Name Sells for $500,000
Domain brokerage Sedo has sold the domain name Talk.com for $500,000. The seller, according to whois records, is Cavalier Telephone, LLC of Virginia.

Moniker Discusses the Future of Domain Auctions
Moniker put the live domain name auction on the map. So it was a surprise to many in the industry when T.R.A.F.F.I.C., host of many of Moniker?s live domain auctions over the past few years, announced that Rick Latona Auctions would be its only auction provider in 2010. That leaves one more Moniker/TRAFFIC auction this fall under the company?s existing contract.

Jay Westerdal Launches Counterclaims Against Thought Convergence
Name Intelligence founder Jay Westerdal has filed a counterclaim against Thought Convergence, Inc. (TCI) in a legal battle over TCI?s acquisition of his company.

Google isn't making us dumb ? or smart. That's the problem
Last year, Nick Carr wrote a forceful article for the Atlantic magazine, arguing that Google was making us stupid. It's not just Google, of course, but the whole chaotic wave of technology that seems to be sweeping us into the future, surrounded and sometimes battered by the flotsam and wreckage of old certainties. And that was before Twitter hit the big time.

Future of Australia's newspapers is bright, says Hartigan
The head of Australia's largest newspaper company, John Hartigan, has delivered an optimistic verdict on the future of journalism, arguing that Australian newspapers are holding up well compared with their counterparts in Britain and the US.

Readers key to future of journalism
The future of journalism will not depend on bloggers, comment sites, Google or Yahoo, News Limited chairman and chief executive John Hartigan says.

FULL TEXT: Read John Hartigan's speech

Firefox 3.5: Excellent for fans, but competition getting tougher
Firefox 3.5 brings the world's second-most popular browser up to speed with current browsing technology and trends, and perhaps nudges it just a bit ahead of the competition. However, it is by no means the leap ahead that its predecessor Firefox 3 was, and it's clear that the competition isn't going away anytime soon.

Google Makes a Case That It Isn?t So Big
Google handles roughly two-thirds of all Internet searches. It owns the largest online video site, YouTube, which is more than 10 times more popular than its nearest competitor. And last year, Google sold nearly $22 billion in advertising, more than any media company in the world.

Google hits back at WSJ's 'internet vampire' claims
Google has vowed to heal the rift with newspaper publishers facing up to the digital age, rejecting claims that it is an "internet vampire". The internet search portal's comments came after Les Hinton, the chief executive of The Wall Street Journal, last week criticised Google for "sucking the blood" out of the newspaper business.

Foes No More, Ad Agencies Unite With Internet Firms
Advertising agencies and Internet companies once viewed each other as foes, but are now coming together to harness the potential for online advertising. Like many other segments, online ad spending has slowed from its previous breakneck pace during the deep recession, forcing companies to devise new ways to chase fewer dollars.

With 3.5 launch, Firefox faces new challengers
A funny thing to happened to Firefox on the way to vanquishing Internet Explorer: the Mozilla browser's success opened the door for a host of its other competitors.

UK Ministry of Defence blocks Wikileaks
The Ministry of Defence is trying to block all internet access to the whistleblowing site Wikileaks from thousands of its own computers after discovering that dissidents have been using it to leak copies of British military manuals.

ANALYSIS - Cybercrime spreads on Facebook
Cybercrime is rapidly spreading on Facebook as fraudsters prey on users who think the world's top social networking site is a safe haven on the Internet.

Greenpeace guide frowns on HP, still loves Nokia
Greenpeace released its latest Guide to Greener Electronics on Wednesday, revealing that promises aren't always kept. The Greenpeace guide, which started in 2006, ranks the top 17 PC, cell phone, TV, and gaming console manufacturers based on their policies regarding e-waste, climate change, and use of toxic chemicals.

Greenpeace pans PC makers for toxic products [IDG]
Greenpeace International on Wednesday criticized some major PC makers for backtracking on commitments to reduce hazardous substances in hardware.

HP, Lenovo and Dell penalised for breaking their green IT promises [news release]
We're giving HP, Lenovo and Dell--the world's biggest PC makers--a penalty point in our updated Guide to Greener Electronics, for backtracking on their commitments to eliminate PVC plastic and brominated flame retardants (BFRs) from their products by the end of 2009.

Child Porn Is Apple?s Latest iPhone Headache
A photo ostensibly showing a 15-year-old nude girl has appeared in an iPhone app, highlighting Apple?s inability to safeguard its application store from prohibited content.

Online pedophiles blackmail children into meetings
Online pedophiles are becoming more aggressive in their pursuit of children, often using suggestive photographs or inappropriate online conversations to blackmail their victims into face-to-face meetings.

ICANN says Web filters will "embarrass" Aussie govt
An ICANN chief has said the Australian government will ?embarrass itself? if it pushes ahead with plans to install a national Internet content filter.

au: Bullying videos on internet
The ugly side of the YouTube phenomenon has reared its head in Bundaberg. An increasing number of unpleasant videos, filmed in Bundaberg, are appearing on the internet site.

South Australia Govermnment announces cyber bullying crackdown
School students will be taught the dangers of new cyber crimes such as "sexting" as part of a state government initiative to crack down on cyber bullying.

Children exposed to porn in Coast libraries
Children are being exposed to hard-core pornography at Sunshine Coast public library computers. However, the Coast council refuses to install internet filtering software that would help prevent offensive images from being accessed.

Internet filter sparks gaming war
Online games played by millions of Australians could be blocked by the Federal Government's controversial internet filter.

The gaming classification farce and Conroy?s internet filter
In politics, policy-making that alienates the key constituencies affected can be a risky move. No-one knows that better than the Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy Stephen Conroy. His proposed internet filtering plan has caused plenty of outcry since late 2007. With the GFC and ETS to distract, Conroy may have started to feel the pressure was easing a little.

Final Declaration International Conference Berlin, 30 June 2009: Protecting Children and Young People from Sexual Violence with a Focus on the New Media: Perspectives for Europe
We declare, considering that children and young people are increasingly and intensively making use of new technologies and that an increasingly significant part of the social life of children and young people takes place online, where continuously evolving advanced technologies and communication tools are used; ...

Nearly 1 in 10 Kids Report Cyber Bullying
New research shines a light on the phenomenon of ?cyber bullying,? suggesting that nearly 1 in 10 children are bullied through electronic means such as text messages, and girls are more likely to be victims than boys are.

China delays Net filtering; Australia sticks to its guns
As China backs off from controversial PC filtering plans, Australia is looking to expand its censorship net, with plans to ban computer games too.

Pirate Bay site sold to Swedish game firm
A little-known Swedish software firm has snapped up file-sharing website The Pirate Bay with the hope of turning the source of legal controversy into a money-spinner that appeals to both users and content providers.

Pirate Bay founders get rich in jail
A little-known Swedish software firm has snapped up file-sharing website The Pirate Bay with the hope of turning the source of legal controversy into a money-spinner that appeals to both users and content providers.

Pirate Bay starts video streaming
The world's most high-profile file-sharing website, The Pirate Bay (TPB), has lifted the lid on its new video sharing website, The Video Bay. Billed as a rival to YouTube, the service will offer unrestricted video content, in violation of copyright law. It is not clear when the service will actually go live; the site's founders said "it will be done when it's done".

The Pirate Bay to take on YouTube, Hulu with The Video Bay
Watch out, Hollywood -- another threat to your profits appears to be setting sail and headed in your direction. A site called The Video Bay aims to make pirated TV shows and Hollywood movies available in hi-def quality for streaming through your Web browser -- no hefty downloads required. The site, reportedly in development by the people behind the controversial site The Pirate Bay, is aiming to compete with Hulu and YouTube. As far as I can tell, the new venture isn't bothering with any cumbersome legal issues such as copyrights and content licences.

Innocents accused of net piracy in Britain
Some 20 net users have come forward claiming they have been wrongly accused of illegally sharing video games. It follows an investigation by Which? Computing magazine into a couple who were accused of playing a game they claim they had never heard of.

Buyer of Pirate Bay, a File-Sharing Site, Plans to Go Legal
Free music and movies, mostly pirated, abound on the Internet. But Hans Pandeya says he thinks he has an even better offer. He wants to pay Web users to share songs or films ? with the full approval of the copyright owners.

Pirate Bay to be heart of legal content distribution network, say new owners
The world's biggest distributor of links to copyright infringing material is to be bought by a software entrepreneur and turned into a legitimate business, the site has announced. The Pirate Bay has agreed to be acquired for ?4.8 million.

Cash for Pirate Bay file-sharers
The new owners of file-sharing website The Pirate Bay say users will be paid for sharing files. Global Gaming Factory (GGF) paid 60m kronor (?4.7m) to take over the site.

Nokia's N97 brings a clash of two cultures
Smartphones are booming ? even in the middle of a recession ? but their design and functionality can differ remarkably

North Korean 3G network hits 19,000 subscribers [IDG]
North Korea's first and only public cellular telephone network attracted 19,200 subscribers after just over three months in business.

Mobile roaming charges drop across Europe
Mobile phone charges will fall for millions of holidaymakers across Europe from today, after new regulations come into force to drive down the cost of roaming.

End of 'roaming rip-off': cost of texting, calling, surfing the web abroad to plummet from today thanks to EU action [news release]
As of today, sending a text message from abroad in the EU costs a maximum ?0.11, almost three times cheaper than the previous EU average of ?0.28 (excl. VAT). To make a roamed call in another EU country must not cost more than ?0.43 per minute, and no more than ?0.19 to receive a call. From today, outgoing roaming calls will be charged by the second, after the first 30 seconds, rather than by the minute, and incoming calls will be charged by the second from the first second. Holidaymakers and business travellers can also surf the web, download movies or send photos with their mobile without fear of ?bill shocks? while roaming thanks to a wholesale cap of ? 1 per megabyte (MB) downloaded. All these measures are expected to cut roaming charges for EU consumers by a further 60% and increase mobile phone use. The EU first acted on roaming in 2007 reducing the cost of voice roaming calls by 70%.

Mobile phone giants to make European one-size-fits-all charger from 2010
The world?s biggest mobile phone makers announced a deal today agreeing to a universal standard phone charger that will work on millions of handsets made by different manufacturers.

European Commission welcomes industry's commitment to provide a common charger for mobile phones [news release]
Incompatibility of chargers for mobile phones is a major inconvenience for users and also leads to unnecessary waste. Therefore, the Commission has requested industry to come forward with a voluntary commitment to solve this problem so as to avoid legislation. As a result major producers of mobile phones have agreed to harmonise chargers in the EU. In a Memorandum of Understanding (?MoU?), which was submitted to the Commission today, the industry commits to provide chargers compatibility on the basis of the Micro-USB connector. In addition new EU standards to ensure continued safe charger use will be developed to facilitate the implementation of the MoU. The first generation of new inter-chargeable mobile phones should reach the EU market from 2010 onwards.

'Life or death' SPASMS alert
The communications regulator has sounded the alarm after receiving a number of complaints from Australians who received SMS messages containing death threats.

Fly-by SMS death threats hold Aussies to ransom
The federal government has issued a warning against fly-by criminals who are issuing SMS death threats to defraud victims.

SMS death threat warning issued by ACMA
SMS death threats are being sent to Australian mobile phone users in a sickening scam aimed at extorting money from victims. Shameless shysters are texting the messages to scare victims into handing over money, credit card details or other personal information.

'Death threat' SMS being sent to mobiles [AAP]
Some people are receiving text messages containing death threats as part of an international scam - and they're been told to report them to authorities.

Death threat SMS comes to your phone
Australians were urged to ignore scam text messages that used death threats to frighten them to give the sender money, credit card details and personal information.

'You will die'
The Australian Communications and Media Authority has warned people to ignore a mobile phone text message telling people they will die if they do not reply to the scam SMS.

Attack of the SPASMS: the new SMS danger
Scammers are using SMS text messages to con money out of Australians. Scores of Australians have reported receiving SMS messages saying they have won $123,000 but must reply to the message with their email address for instructions on how to claim the money.

Spam blacklist bids top $1m
One of the largest spam blacklists in the world, developed in Australia, is up for sale and the creator has already received offers of more than $1million.

Will convicting five major spammers put an end to spam?
Sadly not ? but the news that the US department of justice has secured guilty pleas from five "prolific" spammers, including Alan Ralsky, might make other US-based spammers pause for thought. And many of the most troublesome spammers are based in the US, although they use ?servers in China and other countries to serve their wares.

Botnets pushing up spam loads
Botnet-controlled PCs are responsible for some 83 per cent of all spam messages, according to a recent report. Security firm MessageLabs said in a recent report that despite efforts to shut down service providers notorious for hosting shady operations, spam vendors are continuing to send out huge loads of junk mail through the use of botnet-infected systems.

Report: botnets sent over 80% of all June spam
There's a ton of spam on the Internet?we all are painfully aware of this already. However, what once required an actual person to send is increasingly being taken over by botnets. A new report from Symantec's MessageLabs says that more than 80 percent of all spam sent today comes from botnets, despite several recent shut-downs.

Symantec Announces June 2009 MessageLabs Intelligence Report [news release]
Symantec Corp. announced the publication of its June 2009 MessageLabs Intelligence Report. Analysis highlights that spam levels were unchanged since May at 90.4 percent largely due to the several hours of downtime experienced by Cutwail, one of the largest and most active botnets, following the shutdown of California-based ISP, Pricewert LLC (also known as 3FN and APS Telecom) on June 5, 2009. Also in June, MessageLabs Intelligence identified 1 in 78 IM-based hyperlinks point to malicious websites.

Google: Spammers regroup after ISP takedowns [IDG]
Spammers are pumping out an increasing number of garbage messages as they regain their capacity to send spam through hacked PCs, according to the latest statistics released by Google on Wednesday.

Google sees new spam players on the horizon
A new crop of spam providers is set to emerge, according to security researchers at Google.

Google Sees Spam Surging
Spam continues to proliferate, despite the shutdown of major spam sources. Google reports that the average volume of spam messages in the second quarter of 2009 was 53% higher than it was in first quarter of the year.

Spam Rates Recovering From 3FN Takedown
Google published a report on spam rates this past quarter indicating that spam volumes declined roughly 30 percent following the Federal Trade Commission's takedown of the troubled online hosting provider 3FN early last month. Google says spammers have already made up a significant amount of ground, climbing 14 percent from the initial drop.

Postini: Google's take on e-mail security
The computer security industry historically borrows military defense concepts to combat digital threats, literally creating war rooms where experts follow attacks in progress on huge screens with phones ringing off the hook.

How wide is the world's digital divide, anyway?
New broadband penetration data shows that the majority of the world has almost no home access to high-speed Internet access; in Africa, for instance, only 2% of homes have broadband. Ars takes a look at the worldwide digital divide.

The real story behind broadband household penetration rates
Discussions on fixed broadband penetration rates usually focus on the extreme ends of the spectrum; impending saturation in countries with well-developed economies and the almost total lack of broadband provision in the poorer ones. TeleGeography believes issues around saturation tend to be overstated, while issues around lack of broadband cannot be overstated.

Michael Jackson's death spawns malware, more scams
As security researchers expected, hackers have begun to use the death of pop star Michael Jackson to infect people's PCs. Starting late last week and continuing today, messages posing as breaking news alerts from the likes of CNN and the Los Angeles Times have been reaching users' mailboxes, said several security companies, including Sophos, Symantec and Trend Micro.

Online Auction Fraud: Don't Let it Happen to You [news release]
One in four complaints in 2008 to the Internet Crime Complaint Center involved online auction fraud. Computers, sports memorabilia, rare coins, designer fashions, and even cars.

us: Cyber bullying case sentence due
Sentencing will take place this week in the first federal cyber bullying case in the US which was brought to trial after a teenage girl took her own life. Lori Drew, 50, pretended to be a boy on the MySpace website to befriend Megan Meier, who hanged herself after the virtual friendship ended.

nz: Grubby emailer wins his job back
A worker sacked for sending dozens of grubby emails has got his job back after successfully arguing that the correspondence was part of a wider work culture.

CDT: New US privacy law getting closer [IDG]
Comprehensive legislation to protect consumers' privacy is closer to becoming a reality in the U.S. Congress than it's been in several years, officials with the Center for Democracy and Technology said Tuesday.

Facebook simplifies privacy settings, calls them too complex [IDG]
Facebook will simplify the way in which it offers privacy options to its users, as it gets ready to give its members for the first time the option to make the content they post on their profiles available to anyone on the Internet.

Facebook cleans up its privacy controls
Revamped privacy settings are coming soon to Facebook. The social network's privacy controls had gotten so sprawling that they were distributed across six separate pages and 40 different settings, according to a conference call the company held on Wednesday.

After Outcry, China Delays Requirement for Web-Filtering Software
Facing strong resistance at home and abroad, China on Tuesday delayed enforcement of a new rule requiring manufacturers to install Internet filtering software on all new computers.

China thinks twice ? and its 300m internet users scent a rare victory
For the netizens of the world's biggest online community, it was a rare victory. At the 11th hour, and with no proper explanation, the Chinese government, the most assiduous internet censor on the planet, engineered a sudden climbdown.

Chinese bloggers hail Green Dam ?victory?
A garden party in east Beijing billed as a protest against a government plan to fit all computers with Green Dam, a controversial web filtering software, turned into a celebration on Wednesday after the programme was postponed.

China's Internet backdown lauded by firms and activists
China's ambitions to strengthen control of the Internet with filtering software became a show of the limits of its power on Wednesday, as activists and industry groups welcomed an abrupt delay of the contentious plan.

Chinese Delay Plan for Censor Software
China's government delayed its controversial requirement that manufacturers include Web-filtering software in all new personal computers sold in the country -- an 11th-hour move that shows the challenges Beijing faces in its wide-ranging efforts to rein in the Internet.

China puts web censorship plans on hold
China has agreed to delay implementation of its policy to have all new computers in the country equipped with a controversial internet filtering software, averting the threat that PC makers not complying by Tuesday would face fines.

China delays internet filter plan
China is delaying a controversial plan requiring all new computers sold in the country to be equipped with an internet filtering software, state media says.

China Delays Mandating Filtering Software [AP]
China postponed a plan to require personal computer makers to supply Internet-filtering software Tuesday, retreating in the face of protests by Washington and Chinese Web surfers just hours before it was due to take effect.

In China, New Limits on Virtual Currency
The buying and selling of the make-believe currencies used in online gaming has become so widespread that Chinese authorities fear it will affect the real economy.

Iran, social media and intelligence
Complaints about the barrage of confusing and contradictory Twitter messages emerging from Iran's upheavals are predictable, writes the Lowy Institute's Sam Roggeveen.

Net surveillance and filters are a reality for Europe, too
The internet is playing such a key role in ?getting information out of Iran that attention has focused, once again, on how much Iran controls the internet within its borders. Iran controls the internet gateways into the country, and in 2006 the government outlawed any connection faster than 128kbps ? until the policy met stiff opposition from business leaders and even members of the Iranian parliament.

China filter software faces tough sell in digital bazaar [Reuters]
China's latest Internet controls have been assailed by rights advocates and Washington, and yet the real challenge to its "Green Dam" plan may be the nation's own computer market, an anarchic digital bazaar.

Internet censorship
China?s internet censors have been working overtime again. PC makers have been told to add internet filtering software to every machine sold in the country from Wednesday and Google has been ordered to cut off access to foreign websites from its local Chinese service.

Is It Time for RealNetworks to Switch Gears?
The technology for playing songs and video on the Internet used to be synonymous with one company: RealNetworks, founded in 1994 by a former Microsoft executive, Rob Glaser.

African broadband costs too high [Reuters]
Many African countries should focus on lowering the cost of broadband access to help boost their economies. Seven sub-Saharan countries scored the lowest possible result in a new technology ranking by the World Bank due to low incomes, weak regulation, limited competition and a lack of private investment.

NBN bill worries infrastructure players
Representatives of Australian critical infrastructure providers have expressed concern that delivering information to the government under its amended National Broadband Network legislation could be costly and conflict with anti-terrorism rules.

Six areas picked to start broadband network
The Rudd government has named six broadband-deprived areas as the first recipients of its $250 million cash injection to kickstart the $43 billion national broadband network in rural areas.

Roll-out of the great broadband network to begin
The Federal Government has revealed which parts of Australia will benefit first from its broadband black-spot program, the first stage of the proposed national network.

Rules Set for Distribution of U.S. Broadband Stimulus Funds
The Obama administration on Wednesday published the criteria it will use to hand out billions of dollars in stimulus funds aimed at developing the infrastructure to deliver broadband Internet access to areas that are underserved or without access.

NZ Telecom offers unlimited downloads
Telecom will begin selling a broadband plan on Tuesday that will offer unlimited downloads for $69.95 a month.

Internet offer caps speed, not data
Telecom is to offer an uncapped broadband internet deal but customers will have to trade off connection speed.

Child abuse ring involving more than 2,000 people uncovered
Police in Switzerland have said they have uncovered a child pornography ring involving more than 2,000 people in 78 countries.


(c) David Goldstein 2009


David Goldstein

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Received on Wed Jul 01 2009 - 20:57:09 UTC

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