HKIRC Kick-Starts DNSSEC As a Standard to Safeguard the International Financial Hub From Cybercrime

28 May, 2018 – Hong Kong – Hong Kong Internet Registration Corporation Limited (the “HKIRC”) today announced the launch of Domain Name System Security Extensions (“DNSSEC”), hence calling for enterprises and service providers to follow the new network security standard, and establishing “Hong Kong Domain Name” as the role model of a safe and reliable e-commerce network infrastructure platform.

As an international financial hub, an increasing number of Hong Kong enterprises take part in cross-border e-commerce businesses. With the growing number of financial institutions that provide online wealth management platform, as well as more and more citizens and visitors participate in online transactions, e-commerce platforms become the breeding ground of cybercrime. According to the Hong Kong Police figures, technology crime has soared 10-fold in the past decade which is a worrying situation. There are enormous cyber attacks targeting Domain Name System (DNS), blocking domain access and redirecting internet users to phishing websites to steal their personal data and money. Therefore, strengthening domain name security is imperative. Enterprises and private organizations should have a profound understanding and an effective defense measures to protect their domains.

“As the Internet registration authority in Hong Kong, the HKIRC has been carefully monitoring cyber security to foster a safe internet environment. DNSSEC, is an end-to-end security protocol deployment to DNS by enabling the protocol responses to be validated through Key Pairs and Digital Signatures technologies. With the use of DNSSEC, one can effectively reduce commercial fraud and identity theft, as well as security issues, such as unauthorized redirection of visitors to third party sites. Reducing the threat of phishing attacks on traditional e-commerce platforms, mobile payment and self-service travel sites that Hong Kong people in love with.” said Mr. Simon Chan, Chairman of Hong Kong Internet Registration Corporation Limited.

HKIRC has applied DNSSEC at root zone to manage “.hk” and “.香港”. Chain-of-trust will be generated on registered sub-domains once additional configuration was deployed, guaranteeing the domain name service at each level is verified as correct, complete, and reliable. This helps to improve the infrastructure security of “.hk” domain names and provides a stable and interoperable network environment for both Hong Kong and international communities.

The Hong Kong SAR Government also takes the lead in enabling DNSSEC with government-related domain names. “The deployment of DNSSEC can bring an extra layer of security protection to the key IT infrastructure of smart city. To promote the wide adoption of DNSSEC by the industry and the public and to strengthen cyber security of e-Government services, the Office of the Government Chief Information Officer has been working closely with HKIRC and took the lead in deploying DNSSEC and using digital signatures for over 1,400 government Internet domain names in the second half of 2017. This ensures the authenticity of domain names and reduces the chances of re-directing the public to fake websites,” said Ir. Allen Yeung, Government Chief Information Officer.

Since the HKIRC officially announced the signed of DNSSEC for “.hk” and”.香港” domain names last May, the number of domain names adopting DNSSEC in Hong Kong have an average monthly growth rate of 11.27%, calculated from January this year. In the meantime, Hong Kong has 52.78% DNSSEC validation rate, the highest percentage in Asia. It is leading the deployment of domain name security across the region.

“Although using DNSSEC has always been effective to defense against cyber attacks, the validation rate in the Asia-Pacific is still relatively low. We are glad to hear that the relevant rate in Hong Kong stands out in the region. ICANN is dedicated to ensure the stability of Internet and we will work together with HKIRC to popularize DNSSEC for a safer Internet environment for enterprises and the Internet community.” said by Mr. Jia-Rong Low, Vice President and Managing Director of ICANN Asia Pacific.

“.hk” is a Hong Kong brand. The adoption of DNSEEC provides a new network security standard, which will not only reduce the time and economic loss for enterprises and users, but also help building Hong Kong network confidence among the public, tourists and even overseas investors, and ultimately enhance the position of Hong Kong’s information technology across the region.

HKIRC provides DNSSEC teaching materials, samples and testing platform (http://www.hkirc.hk/GO/DNSSEC) for free, and it will cooperate with registrars, service partners and other related organisations in Hong Kong to establish a secure Hong Kong domain name system for cybercrime prevention. Therefore, the Hong Kong e-commerce will continue to develop and becoming a role model of the global cyber security infrastructure.

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About HKIRC

Hong Kong Internet Registration Corporation Limited (HKIRC) is a non-profit-distributing, non-statutory company limited by guarantee designated by the Government of the HKSAR to undertake the administration of Internet domain names under the .hk and .香港 country code top level domain. HKIRC provides registration services for English domain names ending with .com.hk, .org.hk, .net.hk, .edu.hk, .gov.hk, .idv.hk, .hk and Chinese domain names ending with .公司.香港, .組織.香港, .網絡.香港, .教育.香港, .政府.香港, .個人.香港, .香港, and other domains to be introduced from time to time in Hong Kong.



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