The Web's Shadiest Neighborhoods: What You Need to Know

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The 'Safest' Web Neighborhoods

This list includes the bottom 10 shady TLDs – or the "safest" TLDs, historically. All of these TLDs have less than 2 percent of their sites classified with shady ratings to date.

However, users should beware of reading too much into this section. Only a few of these have large numbers of sites in Blue Coat's database. There are also no guarantees that TLDs that currently have lower risk levels will maintain them.

As good general-purpose TLDs, .tel and .jobs appear to be obvious targets for attackers in the future. In addition, .ck is a concern now that Blue Coat has publicly identified it as a fairly safe place, since whoever is running their registry may not have the resources to keep out the bad guys.

Much like in the streets of New York City in "Ghostbusters," suspicious activity is happening in varying degrees all over the web. The relative risk of visiting a website in a "shady" neighborhood can vary dramatically depending on who is managing the "residents" there.

What many users may not realize is that the letters following the "." in a website address represent a top-level domain (TLD) – essentially a "neighborhood" of addresses – maintained by a specific company or group. Ideally, TLDs would all be run by security-conscious operators who diligently review new domain name applications, and reject those that don't meet a stringent set of criteria.

Unfortunately, the reality for many of these new neighborhoods is that they go unpoliced, like Slimer wreaking havoc on the 12th floor of the Sedgewick Hotel. To avoid getting slimed, businesses and consumers need guidance to understand how safe, or how shady, these new TLDs may be considered for web security purposes.

Courtesy of Blue Coat research, let's take a closer look at the web's shadiest neighborhoods.


Related Topics : Unisys, Stimulus Package, Security Breaches, Symantec, Electronic Surveillance

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