Sources all over the world seem to be celebrating this event as if it were a good thing.
Rod Beckstrom of the guardian.co.uk writes:
The internet belongs to you -- We are entering a new era of coordination, not control -- where the internet is governed by you, the users. Icann was formed 11 years ago today through a combined effort of the US government and the technical community that built the network itself. And today we celebrate the remarkable success of that effort by doing a very unusual thing: ending the agreement that was responsible for our success.
Susie Gharib writes for PBS.org:
The Internet is a little more global tonight. The Commerce Department agreed to relax control over the non-profit company that sets the rules for web site domain names. In theory, it means the Internet will now better reflect its global footprint. In practice, it means stay tuned for a ton of new places to surf, which may be good or bad news.
Some time ago, I wrote in 60-Seconds "Who will own the Internet" ...
What is becoming painfully clear is either the world is too stupid to recognize the grave problems inherent in an unregulated internet -- or they intentionally ignore the threat in favor of their own self-serving, hidden agendas. No, we do not need a privatized internet. No, we do not need further deregulation -- and above all, the last thing we need are more layers and layers of bureaucracy. ICANN needs to shape up or ship out. Better yet, ICANN should be scrapped in favor of a governing body who actually governs -- who actually understands the difference between right and wrong.
Will this milestone will turn out to be the internet's worst nightmare? Well, we certainly won't know for some time. However, if one reads the obscured writing on the wall, we're probably all in for a rough ride and most likely some rude awakenings. We've all watched as the implementation of standard IPv6 has slowed to a snail's pace. It takes time to change protocols. We've also pleaded and begged for more bandwidth and faster delivery of increasingly rich media and connectivity. It takes time to change infrastructure. Unfortunately, we've also witnessed the nocuous spread of internet crime like a cancerous stranglehold on accountability. Bureaucracy seldom acts before it's too late. Am I paranoid? You bet.
For some reason, people don't learn from serious mistakes or forboding wake-up calls. Last year's squelching of Georgia's connectivity by Russian botnets as prelude to invasion should have been a strong incentive to strengthen our digital shores; rather than softening them. Relentless, ongoing attacks on the Pentagon from Pacific rim hackers and crime rings should inspire bolstered digital national defenses. But yesterday, no one remembered these indicators. Was Churchill paranoid in early 1940? You betcha.
Indicators are now giving us a clear look at how cybercrime is growing and changing their methods. Rustock, one of the oldest and largest botnets, has doubled in size since June and established a predictable spamming pattern to further its malware and trojan distribution. (The Russian botnet, Rustock, boasts 150,000 compromised computers capable of sending 30 billion infectious spams per day.)
Will we learn? Maybe. By the mid 2000-teens, you may be hearing cries for Web 3-point-oh. You may be seeing a scramble to push IPv6 toward reality. (It's probably the best, of few opportunities to reign in digital accountability!) On the other hand, perhaps ICANN's ultimate take-over of the web will turn out to be the blessing many have predicted. Maybe they'll restore accountability to the web. Maybe they'll finally put an end to rogue registrars, domain kiting and forged identities. Maybe I'm dreaming.
What ever happens it will be interesting to watch. Below, I've cited just a few of the indicators that tell us where the underground internet is going.
Thanks for reading.
Death, Taxes and Botnets - If Benjamin Franklin were alive today, he would amend his famous "... in this world nothing is certain but death and taxes" line to include botnets. Every single day, some 150 billion spam messages are distributed by botnets
MessageLabs Intelligence: Q3/September 2009 - Latest Investigation of Spam from Botnets Reveals Rapid Growth; Rustock's Heartbeat, Maazben Gambles to Dominate and Grum Becomes Worst Offender (PDF Report: MLI_2009.09_Sept_FINAL_US_EN.pdf)
Malware hosting trends exposed - Analysis highlights that botnets are now responsible for sending 87.9 percent of all spam. A newer botnet, Maazben, has experienced rapid growth since its infancy
Malware affiliate bounty: Infect a Mac, earn 43 cents - If you think Macs are safe from malware attacks, think again. There's now a bounty for hackers and phishers who get their Trojan on your Mac.
Do NOT, I repeat, do NOT open an email borne file that promises to show you a video, then states you do not have the correct codec. In fact, do not open ANY files that come from strangers. Just don't click!