How SOPA Will Destroy The Internet

As you read this, please keep in mind that I say it all with a track record of nearly 14 years of being proactive and having a zero-tolerance policy towards criminal activity and network abuse on our system. We have great relationships with Law Enforcement Agencies both here in Canada and abroad. We are always helpful and (usually) happy to answer questions, and help LEA understand the complexities and nuances of the internet. We’ve had the good fortune to meet some really intelligent and clued in cybercrime units. We participate in numerous communities in combating .net abuse and cybercrime.

I finally got around to reading the text of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) today. While the ostensible intentions are to combat online piracy and the sale of counterfeit goods, the bad news is that the legislation contains elements which basically puts every single domain registered under  generic TLDs under the authority of the United States Attorney General.

We have already seen in cases of the ICE domain seizures, improper takedowns and overreach resulting in the takedown of tens of thousands of websites when a single one was the target.

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2011/2012 Holiday Season Hours

Please note that easyDNS will have shortened support hours around the holiday weekends. These changes only affect email and phone support. We continue to monitor and maintain our services around the clock, all year round. Outside of the following changes, our usual support schedule of 8:30am – 6:00pm will be maintained.

All times are in EST

Friday, Dec 23 : 8:30am – 3:00pm

Saturday, Dec 24 : 11:00am – 3:00pm

Sunday, Dec 25 : Closed

Friday, Dec 30 : 8:30am – 3:00pm

Saturday, Dec 31 : 11:00am – 3:00pm

Sunday, Jan 1 : Closed

Monday, Jan 2 : 9:00am – 6:00pm

Intermittent resolution issues with NS2/DNS2 [resolved]

Some customers may have experienced intermittent resolution issues with our “ns2.easydns.com” / “dns2.easydns.com” Anycast nameserver cluster. We have identified a specific node within that Anycast cluster as the cause, and are working with our upstream provider to have it removed.

We apologize for the inconvenience.

[ UPDATE – 2011-12-15 @ 5:58pm ] We have received confirmation from our upstream provider that the problematic node has been removed from the Anycast cluster, which means that this issue is resolved on the front end. We are presently working on the node and bringing it back up to speed, and expect to have it back in the Anycast cluster tomorrow afternoon.

The Updated easyWhois iPhone App Looks Great!

We’ve released an updated version of our (free) easyWhois iPhone App. In 2009 we worked with easyDNS  customer Art and Logic to release an iPhone App version of our popular easyWhois domain lookup tool. They were great to work with, and as is their norm, they sent us off with fully functional iPhone App and the source code thereof.

In the interim, we added a new systems engineer here, and while it wasn’t listed on his resume, Ranko came to Canada from Serbia with a girlfriend, Marija, who does a lot of c++ and mobile apps coding. She coded the easyIPCalc subnet calculator that we released earlier this year, and just over a week ago we turned her loose on the original easyWhois App source.

The result is a much needed breath of fresh air for the easyWhois iPhone App, adding in new features such as:

  • Emailing the results of a lookup.
  • Lookup History
  • Bookmarks
  • Snazzy new “look-and-feel”

If you haven’t already, grab this whois client for your iPhone and never wonder again if LindsayLohan4President2016.com has already been snagged or not.

(And yes, I guess we really should get on Android version, shouldn’t we?)

Prevent Domain Theft by Using Access Control Lists and Login Restrictions

The other day Arnon forwarded me a blog post about the ordeal some poor guy went through with his registrar account getting hacked (not here, someplace else), and the thief transferred-out his domain name and changed the ownership of it.

His particular story had a happy ending for a number of reasons:

  • The thief left his nameservers in place, so his website continued to function throughout. He chronicled the ordeal on his website.
  • There exists a TDRP (Transfer Dispute Resolution Protocol) that Registrars can employ to contest a transfer they feel is fraudulent and have it rolled back.
  • After some prodding, his Registrar finally used it.

But as the author of that post relates, not all of these stories end well, and he’s even listed numerous open-cases at the end of his post.

We have never had a domain theft reported here. I think we owe part of that to our size, we are miniscule compared to some of the big boys, so when cyberthieves target a registrar (for things like fake password resets, “verify your account” phishing attacks), they pick bigger fish.

But that doesn’t exempt us when thieves are targeting a specific domain that happens to be with us. Over the years, there have been attempts. One notorious domain hijacker in particular has been trying to lay his hands on a certain 2-char .com here for about a decade. (We’ve seen other 2-char .com’s sell for over 1 million dollars, so we’re talking serious cybercrime here.)

So if you haven’t already, you should make yourself acquainted with the “Security” settings in your account info: (more…)