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It’s official: new gTLDs didn’t kill anyone

Kevin Murphy, December 2, 2015, 16:05:49 (UTC), Domain Tech

The introduction of new gTLDs posed no risk to human life.

That’s the conclusion of JAS Advisors, the consulting company that has been working with ICANN on the issue of DNS name collisions.

It is final report “Mitigating the Risk of DNS Namespace Collisions”, published last night, JAS described the response to the “controlled interruption” mechanism it designed as “annoyed but understanding and generally positive”.

New text added since the July first draft says: “ICANN has received fewer than 30 reports of disruptive collisions since the first delegation in October of 2013. None of these reports have reached the threshold of presenting a danger to human life.”

That’s a reference to Verisign’s June 2013 claim that name collisions could disrupt “life-supporting” systems such as those used by emergency response services.

Names collisions, you will recall, are scenarios in which a newly delegated TLD matches a string that it is already used widely on internal networks.

Such scenarios could (and have) led to problems such as system failure and DNS queries leaking on to the internet.

The applied-for gTLDs .corp and .home have been effectively banned, due to the vast numbers of organizations already using them.

All other gTLDs were obliged, following JAS recommendations, to redirect all non-existent domains to, an IP address chosen to put network administrators in mind of port 53, which is used by the DNS protocol.

As we reported a little over a year ago, many administrators responded swearily to some of the first collisions.

JAS says in its final report:

Over the past year, JAS has monitored technical support/discussion fora in search of posts related to controlled interruption and DNS namespace collisions. As expected, controlled interruption caused some instances of limited operational issues as collision circumstances were encountered with new gTLD delegations. While some system administrators expressed frustration at the difficulties, overall it appears that controlled interruption in many cases is having the hoped-for outcome. Additionally, in private communication with a number of firms impacted by controlled interruption, JAS would characterize the overall response as “annoyed but understanding and generally positive” – some even expressed appreciation as issues unknown to them were brought to their attention.

There are a number of other substantial additions to the report, largely focusing on types of use cases JAS believes are responsible for most name collision traffic.

Oftentimes, such as the random 10-character domains Google’s Chrome browser uses for configuration purposes, the collision has no ill effect. In other cases, the local system administrators were forced to remedy their software to avoid the collision.

The report also reveals that the domain name, which is owned by long-time ICANN volunteer Mikey O’Connor, receives a “staggering” 30 DNS queries every second.

That works out to almost a billion (946,728,000) queries per year, coming when a misconfigured system or inexperienced user attempts to visit a .corp domain name.

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Comments (4)

  1. Reg says:

    Which didn’t keep ICANN from notifying us of the re-release of the CI list and recommending that we re-impose “preventative measures” in advance of the report. Because…reminding people that collision was a fear might cause people to try to collide?

  2. This report, has completely ignored the Collateral Damage caused by the other Platform and networking inoperability problems plaguing the New GTLD adopters. Its just another Propoganda piece supported by the New GTLD Supporters. The real story behind this Window Dressing Report are still hidden, and there will be press releases and studies released, that will be very damaging.
    The main proponents of using the new GTLDs are Search Engine Ad marketers, who could care less about the fiduciary responsibilities of true Online Marketing Strategists, whose careers depend on The URL Addresses Operability requirements. The Smart Online Strategists detest the Online Ad Marketers lack of regard for the Business owners best interests displayed by many Google Ad Marketers promoting the New GTLDs. JAS 11/20/15

    Gratefully, Jeff Schneider (Contact Group) (Metal Tiger) (Former Rockefeller IBEC Marketing Analyst/Strategist) (Licensed CBOE Commodity Hedge Strategist)

    • Collision fail says:

      Name Collisions may not have killed people, but you should certainly check your capslock key for damage.

      Collisions at the second level have occurred for years, well before the current round of gTLDs. In fact they were monetised by many of the operators. It bothers me that so much of the community have willfully ignored the clear dissonance between the way name collisions are embraced in older TLDs as a way of identifying valuable names, while in the newer TLDs they are made out to represent a threat.

      Sadly this shows how little we can trust many of the voices from within the community to be neutral.

      Perhaps that’s the only valuable thing to have come from the ridiculous faux hand wringing that the name collisions issue brought to us. We now know that there are no topics that are isolated or protected (as security and stability might have once been perceived) from commercial self interest when it comes to ICANN policy.

  3. Anil says:

    After seeing title, I thought it’s about “New gTLD’s didn’t kill DOT COM” 🙂

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