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New web domain registrations see huge spike

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As the world battled Covid-19 amidst a lockdown, cybercriminals were surreptitiously registering new domains as part of their devious plans to attack enterprises and individuals after domain registries in the UK and Australia reported an uncharacteristic spike in bookings during April. 

UK local registry Nominet reported 132,250 new domain registrations in April 2020, a spike of 15,000 over the previous month, with Australian registry auDA recorded 48,754 new domains, the biggest month for new domain creations seen for several years. 

It is not uncommon for cybercriminals to create new ones or modify existing scams during times of public uncertainties of the kind that the world is going through now. 

Dubious domains 

Nominet CEO Russell Haworth recently said that the company had suspended more than 28,000 domains used for criminal activity between November 1, 2018, and 31 October 2019. Haworth said the company had used its DNS skills to expand into the cybersecurity market, allowing them to keep watch over any dubious bookings.

The company said that it had spotted a 23,000 drop in the registration of .uk domains in April 2020 after having spiked by 10,000 each during February and March. For its part, the auDA said it also observed a decline in the number of .au registrations, though there seems to be no proof that this is linked to the pandemic in any way. 

Haworth further said that the company was tracking suspicious domains that could be used for fraudulent activity and working with the UK healthcare products registry agency MHRA to ensure that such domains are blocked at points of registration itself. 

Via The Register