A case study of closing down spamvertised .hk domains registered in Hong Kong

With the implementation of a rapid delisting measure to handle spamvertised domains by the Hong Kong Domain Name Registration Company Limited (HKDNR) and the Office of the Telecommunications Authority of Hong Kong (OFTA), the number of spamvertised and phishing .hk domain names dropped drastically in July 2007.

A list of spamvertised and phishing domain names is supplied by OFTA, the anti-spam enforcement agency in Hong Kong, in partnership with leading anti-spam community participants. If any domain names in the list fall under HKDNR’s delisting criteria, these domain names will be suspended immediately. As of July 20, 2007, approximately 8,000 domain names were suspended. Before the suspension of these 8,000 domain names, HKDNR received 73.5 spamming reports everyday. After the suspension of these domain names, the spamming reports received by HKDNR drop to an average of 11.7 per day. All the suspended .hk domain names are registered by overseas registrants.

In addition to domain name suspension, HKDNR has implemented a new practice of payment method by the adoption of Verification by VISA and Secure Code Verification for online payment through Visa / Master Cards. This enhanced payment practice is proved to be very effective in decreasing the registration of spamvertised domains. Since the implementation of the enhanced payment method, the reported number of spamvertised .hk domain decreased significantly.

According to the information published in mid June in http://spamvertised.abusebutler.com/perm.php about the top 800 spamvertised domains worldwide over the previous 4 weeks, the number of reports on .hk spamvertised domains accounted for 2.3 % of the total reports received. In early August, the number of reports on .hk spamvertised domains dropped to 0.3 % of the total reports received. Suffice to say the delisting measure adopted in Hong Kong has resulted in a decrease of 85 % on reported spamvertised domains. The significant decrease shows the determination of HKDNR and OFTA in fighting against spamming. HKDNR will keep on cooperating actively with OFTA and other agencies to combat the spamming issue, and will exert the greatest effort in eliminating all possible frauds.