Blog Moderator | Dec 06, 2013
Guest Post: Ramon Ray - Smallbiztechnology
For any company doing business today, a website is far more than a way to promote products and services. With a consumer market that heavily relies on the Internet for everything from directions to reviews, any small business that has not yet set up an online presence could be missing out on a gold mine of potential customers. In fact, Shop.org projects online holiday sales to increase between 13 and 15 percent to as much as $82 billion during the months of November and December this year, and the U.S. Commerce Department reported that final Q4 (October – December) e-commerce sales in 2012 increased 15.7 percent.
Small business owners can’t rely solely on a physical store to grow their business. It’s time to get online as customers now expect to be able to find information and, ideally, purchase products or book reservations using the Web.
Here are a few compelling reasons to boost your online presence by establishing the best website you can – some of which were recently highlighted by small business owners in a survey that Verisign conducted with Merrill Research.
Burt Kaliski | Nov 26, 2013
We recently hosted Dr. Ralph Merkle as a guest speaker for the Verisign Labs Distinguished Speaker Series. His talk, “Quantum Computers and Public-Key Cryptosystems,” was a great presentation on how molecular nanotechnology -- the ability to economically manufacture most arrangements of atoms permitted by physical law -- could fundamentally alter the world as we know it. Ralph’s and many others’ research on this topic has been groundbreaking and we are grateful he took the time to come and share his knowledge.
A little background: In 1974, Ralph, co-inventor of public-key cryptography, challenged conventional thinking on information security by proposing a way for two users who initially don't share a secret key with each other (or anyone else) to protect the messages they exchange. How could they go from a state where they have no apparent way to protect their messages, to one where they do?
The answer is obvious now in hindsight, and we experience it every time we make a secure connection to a Web server and in many other applications: two users can protect the messages they exchange using public-key cryptography. In public-key cryptography, keys come in pairs, a public key and a private key. Messages are encrypted with the public key, and decrypted with the corresponding private key. The two users thus only need to give each other their public keys (in a trusted way); they keep their private keys to themselves, so no secret keys are shared with anyone. They protect the messages they exchange by encrypting them with one another's public keys. (In a typical implementation between a user and a Web server, only the Web server initially needs a key pair, which is enough to get an encrypted session started.)
Nearly four decades ago when the Internet was in its infancy, public-key cryptography hadn't yet been discovered, and it was inconceivable that a message could be protected between two users without someone sharing some secret keys. For an undergraduate project, Ralph thought about proving that no such method had these properties, and when a proof was not forthcoming, he set out to find a method that did.
Burt Kaliski | Nov 20, 2013
ICANN’s second level domain (SLD) blocking proposal includes a provision that a party may demonstrate that an SLD not in the initial sample set could cause “severe harm,” and that SLD can potentially be blocked for a certain period of time. The extent to which that provision would need to be exercised remains to be determined. However, given the concerns outlined in Part 2 and Part 3 of this series, it seems likely that there could be many additions (and deletions!) from the blocked list given the lack of correlation between the DITL data and actual at-risk queries.
If the accumulated risk from non-blocked SLDs were to become too large, it could become necessary for ICANN to withdraw the entire gTLD from the global DNS root. Changes to the DNS root, once properly approved and authorized, can be implemented rapidly by updating the root zone file and notifying root server operators that a new zone file is available. This part of the process is as straightforward for deletions as for additions. The approval and authorization process, however, would need to be much faster for a deletion than it currently is for an addition because of the urgency of making the change or “rollback” after a determination was reached that a gTLD’s delegation needed to be revoked. The importance of rapid delegation is affirmed in Recommendation 3 of SAC062: Advisory Concerning the Mitigation of Name Collision Risk, published Nov. 7 by ICANN’s Security and Stability Advisory Committee (SSAC):
Burt Kaliski | Nov 19, 2013
I began my journey into computer science as a high school freshman coding on a TI-59 calculator. Later in my high school years, I wrote computer chess games on a PDP-11/34 minicomputer in BASIC and, for speed, in assembly language. I might have contributed inadvertently to the Y2K problem with some FORTRAN and COBOL programs I wrote in the early 1980s. In college, I learned LISP and CLU on a MULTICS operating system, and had a part-time job where I programmed on a VAX-11/750. But eventually I did get around to coding in C on a Unix box.
So this is a little more information than 140 characters would allow, which may explain why I found David Chisnall's opening talk at the recent vBSDcon so fascinating. DOS and VAX are to computer professionals what the classics are to the liberal arts: our Iliad and Odyssey. And C and Unix, in their various forms, are the living languages that preserve the connection to the early days - the contemporary variants of Koine Greek. The art of building C compilers as well as operating systems continues to advance skillfully.
Verisign hosted vBSDcon as part of our commitment to high quality, community efforts that provide stable, secure building blocks for Internet infrastructure, such as the one we operate. The FreeBSD operating system, as I mentioned in a previous post, is one of the mix of options we support at our edge sites, alongside Linux, contributing to our hardware and software diversity. FreeBSD and other crowd-sourced software initiatives can only be sustained through well run online communities. But those communities in turn can only be sustained if a good number of participants meet in person from time to time to strengthen their connections and review current developments. That's what we wanted to encourage through vBSDcon, as Verisign engineer and conference co-organizer Rick Miller described on Twitter:
“The BSD community is very tight knit, but dispersed all around the world. Conferences like this are so important because it’s a rare opportunity to meet and collaborate." -- Rick Miller, Verisign
As recounted in the vBSDcon tweets, the conference wrap ups by ixSystems and RootBSD and www.bsdnow.tv's video podcast, the well-organized event appears to have met those goals.
A special thanks to vBSDcon's speakers: David Chisnall, Kris Moore, Devin Teske, Luigi Rizzo, Baptiste Daroussin, Henning Brauer, Reyk Floeter, Mike Bentkofsky, Marc de la Gueronniere, Julien Charbon, John Hixson, and Glen Wiley; and sponsors iXsystems, Juniper Networks, The FreeBSD Foundation, RootBSD, CDW, HP and Daemon Security, Inc. for their generous contributions. Thanks also to Verisign Engineers Rick Miller and Glen Wiley for championing and organizing this inaugural event.
Blog Moderator | Nov 15, 2013
Today Verisign announced that we are updating the Domain Name Industry Brief (DNIB) and a new version of the DNIB is expected to be released in the first quarter of 2014.
With the Internet continuing to evolve in new ways, we have been evaluating how best to align the DNIB with that evolution so it better addresses the interests of our readers and expands the scope of the trends we’re tracking. We remain committed to continuing to provide informative content on the latest industry trends that are most relevant to our readers.
Along with this announcement, we have also released infographics containing select DNIB data for the first three quarters of 2013, which are located below.