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Old 29th June 2011, 10:07 PM
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New Internet domain names will add wrinkles, but how much risk?

The recent decision to expand the number of generic top-level domains used in online addresses should have little impact on the task of securing the Domain Name System that underlies Internet activity, industry and government experts say.
“I don’t think there are any technical concerns with that,” said Doug Montgomery, manager of the National Institute for Standards and Technology's Internet and Scalable Systems Metrology Group.
The security tools and processes already in place with the current 22 generic TLDs should serve as well under an expanded naming system, although the added volume and complexity could present some challenges to the good guys and opportunities for the bad guys. Potential problems could include misuse of some existing digital certificates, difficulties in translating Internationalized Domain Names and the possibility of using new domains for spoofing.

“We have the ability to protect ourselves,” said Jon Geater, director of technical strategy for Thales e-Security. “We’ll have to see how it shakes out.”
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers announced June 20 that it had approved a plan to expand the number of generic TLDs and would begin accepting applications early next year.
Domain names are the easy-to-read names, separated by dots, that are used in URLs on the Web and in e-mail addresses, and which are associated with numerical IP addresses for routing data over the Internet. There currently are 22 generic TLDs, such as .com and .gov, and about 250 country code TLDs, such as .us. The decision by ICANN will open the Domain Names System to an unlimited number of new generic TLDs, up to 1,000 a year, in not only ASCII or Latin script, but also in any other script, such as Arabic or Chinese.
The approval process could take from nine to 20 months, so the first new TLDs probably will not begin appearing after the final dot in URLs until early 2013 at the soonest.
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