Archive for April, 2012
Over the last several years there has been a rise in domain name hijacking, a dangerous situation where hackers defraud a victim’s domain and use it launch malware or negatively soil a well-earned brand name.
However, while this trend is worrisome, there are ways to mitigate and reduce this threat by using best practices put forward by registrars such as Resell.biz, which offers domain reselling.
“Attackers may use a wide range of techniques to hijack domain names, from spyware, and keystroke loggers to ‘social engineering’ in which scammers impersonate registrants, registrars, or other entities in the chain of trust in order to gain access to passwords and personal information,” said Verisign.
The scammers may then create scam websites which can result in serious damage. Reversing this fraud is tricky, but your choice of domain reseller web hosting platform will play a key role in both preventing this situation and helping you fight the effects if it does happen.
Here are a few key tips to help you fight domain hijacking:
- Research all the security tools on offer by the domain reseller.
- Maintain an active relationship with your registrar, by keeping registration and contact information up to date.
- Choose secure, complex passwords to protect your online systems
- Investigate ‘Registry Lock’ mechanisms put forward by registrars which allows you to set conditions under which registration information can be altered
Resell.biz, for example, also offers stringent terms of services, which prohibits illegal activities including hacking and spamming practices that affect the well being of customers on their automated platforms.
Internal engineers monitor all domain activity on a constant 24-hour basis to ensure your platform is up, safe and secure.
“The threat of domain name hijacking is very real, and organizations are right to be concerned. But with appropriate vigilance and effective tools, it is a threat that
ALL organizations, large and small, can defend against,” said Resell.biz.
114 million .net and .com domains were purchased in the in the final quarter of 2011 which is almost 8% higher than figures recorded in 2010. These numbers were released by Verisign as part of their executive summary contained under quarterly ‘State of the Domain’ reports.
“The largest TLDs in terms of base size were, in order, .com, .de (Germany), .net, .uk (United Kingdom), .org, .info, .tk (Tokelau), .nl (Netherlands), .ru (Russian Federation) and .eu (European Union),” said Verisign.
Interestingly, Verisign also recorded about 64 billion DNS queries to its system in the final part of 2011. This is a staggering figure! There was also a 73% domain renewal rate for .com and .net extensions over the third quarter.
These figures above are great news for domain and website resellers, as they offer clear indications that there is income to be made by web entrepreneurs. Plus, there are zero fees and zero commitments to get started as a domain reseller. The risk levels are low and the rewards great.
Opportunities exist to resell .com, .net, .info, .biz, .name, .us and .in domains to an international audience. Generally, you can expect your new reseller account to feature privacy protection, domain forwarding and mail forwarding, managed DNS, domain theft protection and high-level control panel or management tools.
Plus, all of the above is wrapped up in a white label reseller package which allows you to tightly manage your company branding experience without letting any of your customers (or competitors) know you are using Resell.biz to power your domain business.
By the way, in the fourth quarter of 2011 Verisign reports that there 225 million domain name registrations across all Top Level Domains (TLDs), an increase of 5.9 million domain names, or 2.7 percent over the third quarter. Registrations have grown by more than 20.4 million, or 10 percent, since the fourth quarter of 2010. You can see why domain-reselling packages are becoming so popular!
The Big Apple will fork out $185,000 for a new top-level ICANN domain extension ending in .nyc to house its future online presence and revenue-creation operations.
While this may seem like a hefty sum to pay for domains that until recently cost less than $35 per year (picture .com and .net domain names), the new domain gTLDs are seen as one of the biggest branding opportunities to hit the Internet.
They allow government agencies like New York City to tightly manage their branding experience while other listed companies like Coca Cola can forge new marketing campaigns using examples such as .coke extensions.
According to Information Week, New York City hopes the new pricey domain will generate revenue as well as help residents locate government services.
“The use of the domain also is expected to bolster local businesses and New York City’s global profile as well as promote and market tourism to the area,” said Information Week.
The city plans to license out the domain to all those lawfully and substantially connected to the Big Apple including initiatives around tourism, business and residential projects.
In addition to licensing fees, New York City hopes to generate additional revenue from click-through fees and advertising sales.
“The city will receive a minimum revenue of $3.6 million the initial five-year contract period, with set yearly minimums of $300,000 for the first year; $650,000 for the second year; $750,000 for the third year; $850,000 for the fourth year; and $1,050,000 for the fifth year.”
Neustar is brokering the purchase and maintenance of the domain for New York City, which looks set to run for a five-year period. However, it will be almost six months to a year before the application is approved and finalized by ICANN.
The new domains offer a number of tangible benefits including new business models, better brand definition, and brand awareness and having tighter control over your online identity.
It can also be used to geographically celebrate local citizens, commerce activities, and culture. Some examples include .boston, .utah, or .california.
ICANN states that by May 2012, once all the applied-for strings have been posted, you will have an opportunity to object to any that you believe would infringe your legal rights.
ICANN then suggests you refer to Module 3 of the Applicant Guidebook for details on the objection process, that is available off their website.
ICANN is calling the introduction of these new domains, which went live in January 2012, as one of the biggest events in Internet history. The opportunity to own custom, vanity domains such as .computer or .ocean or .london have obvious brand appeal, but they are nearly as expensive as a tiny matchbox apartment in a major city zone, costing roughly $200,000 for a single application, which can take several months to process.
ICANN recognizes the controversy surrounding the new extensions stating that “a decision to apply for a new gTLD should not be entered into lightly”, as it entails running a registry business ,which comes with the associated responsibility of maintaining a critical and highly visible piece of Internet infrastructure.
Here are some of the benefits and risks of pursuing the above.
• Leverage new business models which allow you to establish accessibility policies for your customers and even erect custom high-security zones
• You have complete control over pricing relating to domain registration
• Continued domain renewals mean reoccurring annual income
• Pursue high-level branding and marketing ventures using the extension.
• Highlight and exploit emerging Internet technologies including IPv6 and RFID chips.
• Gain access to new international markets and users whose local languages use non-Latin characters.
• As mentioned earlier it’s pricey: $185,000 plus additional ongoing operating costs and stringent application requirements specified by ICANN
• Due to intense competition, you may not win your application for a particular string. This means risking your capital investment. Future revenues may not cover the initial investment.
• You will be faced with a lot of red tape or regulatory requirements attached to running the gTLD.
• There may be similar applications for strings from international competitors who try to siphon off customers from your projected target market
• You will need to keep pace with technological change and new advancements in business models. This could be stressful and costly.