The 404 1,447: Where we put on our party hats (podcast)

Leaked from today's 404 episode:

- Seven people around the world collectively possess a set of keys that can dismantle the Web.

- Turn your Instagram pics into real photos with the Lifeprint.

- Skirmos system levels up laser tag with open-source Arduino microcomputer.

- Almost time to panic: 95 percent of the ATMs in the world run on Windows XP.… Read more

US government begins loosening decades-old grip on the Internet

After incubating the Internet and overseeing it for decades, the US government announced Friday it's releasing the last elements of control it has.

The Department of Commerce originally handled core parts of the Internet, but gradually backed away from those duties through a contract with a nonprofit organization called the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). In a statement Friday, the Commerce Department tasked ICANN with convening involved parties to formalize a "multistakeholder" approach to Internet governance.

The nuts and bolts of that work involves running the Internet's Domain Name System (DNS), which translates … Read more

Namecheap targeted in monumental DDoS attack

The Web-hosting service Namecheap was hit with what it says was one the largest distributed-denial-of-service attacks "anyone has seen or dealt with."

On Thursday morning roughly 300 domain names hosted by Namecheap were targeted in a DDoS attack -- a common hacker tactic that causes sites or servers to be bombarded with illegitimate traffic. The massive attack likely caused wide-spread connectivity issues among the hundreds of thousands of other domain names using Namecheap's DNS platform.

"Today is one of the days that, as a service provider who strives to deliver excellence day in and day out, … Read more

LinkedIn suffers site outage due to 'DNS issue'

LinkedIn is battling a DNS issue that took the business social networking site offline for an hour Wednesday night.

The outage, which appears to be over for most of LinkedIn's members, began when the site's homepage was replaced by a domain sales page. (See The Next Web for screenshot.) An hours-long service disruption began affecting the site around 6 p.m. PT, according to DownRightNow.com.

The site's operators explained via Twitter that the outage was caused by a "DNS issue" but did not elaborate.

Our site is now recovering for some members. We determined … Read more

Twitter outage caused by human error, domain briefly yanked

An outage that broke hyperlinks on Twitter yesterday evening originated with a simple human error at a Melbourne, Australia-based hosting firm that was responding to an abuse complaint, CNET has learned.

Twitter last year began to abbreviate all hyperlinks using its t.co domain name -- which had the side effect of introducing a central point of failure where none existed before. That failure happened last night around 11:30 p.m. PT when t.co went offline, meaning millions of Twitter users received "non-existent domain" errors when trying to follow links.

A spokesman for Melbourne IT, a … Read more

GoDaddy offers users one month credit following service outage

GoDaddy customers are being given an apology and one month of free service after grappling with Monday's service snafu.

In an e-mail sent to GoDaddy users, the company's CEO Scott Wagner apologized for the outage that affected Web sites, e-mail availability, and other services.

"We let you down and we know it," the e-mail read. "We take our responsibilities -- and the trust you place in us -- very seriously. I cannot express how sorry I am to those of you who were inconvenienced."

To appease its customers, GoDaddy is kicking in a credit … Read more

How to reset the DNS cache in OS X

The Domain Name System (DNS) is a hierarchical network that resolves text-based URLs such as "www.cnet.com" to the servers' IP addresses that your computer uses for communication. While loading a single Web page or other Web-based resource, your computer may contact numerous URLs to load different components (a Web page, images on it, an application hosted on it, scripts, etc.), so a robust DNS service is a vital part of having a smooth Internet connection.

Even though a fast DNS service will optimize a connection, redundant queries to it will take time to complete. Therefore, based … Read more

FBI kills DNSChanger network, but how many will be affected?

The FBI today made good on its promise to take down its DNSChanger network. But people who ignored warnings may find themselves unable to get online.

At 12:01 a.m. EDT today, the FBI shut down the DNS servers that had kept computers infected by the DNSChanger malware still able to connect to the Internet, according to the Washington Post.

About five years, a group of hackers who deployed the DNSChanger malware, which modified the DNS settings of infected computers to point to rogue servers. After catching the criminal gang and taking controls of the servers, the FBI converted … Read more

How to detect and fix a machine infected with DNSChanger

On July 9, the FBI will close down a network of DNS servers that many people have been depending on for proper Internet access. These servers were originally a part of a scam where a crime ring of Estonian nationals developed and distributed a malware package called DNSChanger, but which the FBI seized and converted to a legitimate DNS service.

This malware scam has been widespread enough that even third-party companies like Google and Facebook and a number of ISPs like Comcast, COX, Verizon, and AT&T have joined in the effort to help remove it by issuing automatic … Read more

Flame malware network based on shadowy domains, fake names

The mysterious Flame malware used domain names registered with fake names to communicate with infected computers in the Middle East for at least four years, researchers said today.

Someone began creating the 86 domains and more than 24 IP addresses that host the command-and-control (C&C) servers as early as 2008, using fake identities and addresses in Austria and Germany to register them with GoDaddy and others, Roel Schouwenberg, senior researcher at Kaspersky Lab, said in a Web conference with reporters this morning. He speculated that stolen credit cards were used for the transactions.

The IP addresses point to … Read more