An image of multiple botnets for the Verisign blog "Industry Insights: Verisign, ICANN and Industry Partners Collaborate to Combat Botnets"

Industry Insights: Verisign, ICANN and Industry Partners Collaborate to Combat Botnets

Note: This article originally appeared in Verisign’s Q1 2021 Domain Name Industry Brief.

This article expands on observations of a botnet traffic group at various levels of the Domain Name System (DNS) hierarchy, presented at DNS-OARC 35.

Addressing DNS abuse and maintaining a healthy DNS ecosystem are important components of Verisign’s commitment to being a responsible steward of the internet. We continuously engage with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and other industry partners to help ensure the secure, stable and resilient operation of the DNS.

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Verisign Outreach Program Remediates Billions of Name Collision Queries

A name collision occurs when a user attempts to resolve a domain in one namespace, but it unexpectedly resolves in a different namespace. Name collision issues in the public global Domain Name System (DNS) cause billions of unnecessary and potentially unsafe DNS queries every day. A targeted outreach program that Verisign started in March 2020 has remediated one billion queries per day to the A and J root name servers, via 46 collision strings. After contacting several national internet service providers (ISPs), the outreach effort grew to include large search engines, social media companies, networking equipment manufacturers, national CERTs, security trust groups, commercial DNS providers, and financial institutions.

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A Balanced DNS Information Protection Strategy: Minimize at Root and TLD, Encrypt When Needed Elsewhere

Over the past several years, questions about how to protect information exchanged in the Domain Name System (DNS) have come to the forefront.

One of these questions was posed first to DNS resolver operators in the middle of the last decade, and is now being brought to authoritative name server operators: “to encrypt or not to encrypt?” It’s a question that Verisign has been considering for some time as part of our commitment to security, stability and resiliency of our DNS operations and the surrounding DNS ecosystem.

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Maximizing Qname Minimization: A New Chapter in DNS Protocol Evolution

Data privacy and security experts tell us that applying the “need to know” principle enhances privacy and security, because it reduces the amount of information potentially disclosed to a service provider — or to other parties — to the minimum the service provider requires to perform a service.  This principle is at the heart of qname minimization, a technique described in RFC 7816 that has now achieved significant adoption in the DNS.

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Chromium’s Impact on Root DNS Traffic

This article originally appeared Aug. 21, 2020 on the APNIC blog.

Introduction

Chromium is an open-source software project that forms the foundation for Google’s Chrome web browser, as well as a number of other browser products, including Microsoft Edge, Opera, Amazon Silk, and Brave. Since Chrome’s introduction in 2008, Chromium-based browsers have steadily risen in popularity and today comprise approximately 70% of the market share.1

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DNS: An Essential Component of Cloud Computing

The evolution of the internet is anchored in the phenomenon of new technologies replacing their older counterparts. But technology evolution can be just as much about building upon what is already in place, as it is about tearing down past innovations. Indeed, the emergence of cloud computing has been powered by extending an unlikely underlying component: the more than 30-year-old global Domain Name System (DNS).

The DNS has offered a level of utility and resiliency that has been virtually unmatched in its 30-plus years of existence. Not only is this resiliency important for the internet as a whole, it is particularly important for cloud computing. In addition to the DNS’s resiliency, cloud computing relies heavily on DNS capabilities such as naming schemes and lookup mechanisms for its flexibility, usability and functionality.

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Combatting Illegal Online Opioid Sales in the COVID-19 Era

U.S. News & World Report’s June 23 article, “The Hidden Deaths of COVID-19”, details how the current novel coronavirus pandemic could cause a spike in opioid overdoses, by denying those most at risk access to support meetings or urgent medical care. It underscores that, even as we focus on mitigating this current pandemic, we cannot let up on efforts to combat the ongoing epidemic of opioid misuse and overdose.

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