You've probably heard of the rather unpopular VeriSign SiteFinder that broke lots of systems a few weeks ago. Well, they're planning to do it again...
VeriSign is to relaunch Site Finder, its highly controversial domain typo redirection service.
VeriSign suspended Site Finder earlier this month, following an order from ICANN, the Net governing body, which claimed the company was in breach of its terms of operation.
Site Finder was launched in September when VeriSign applied a "wildcard" entry into the .com and .net Top Level Domain zones. This redirects traffic that would otherwise have resulted in a "no domain" response to the controversial search site...
Some network administrators adopted technical countermeasures, such as installing a modified version of BIND (the ubiquitous DNS Server software), to negate Verisign's wildcard changes. However anecdotal evidence suggests that these measures are not without their problems either.
Critics of Site Finder argue that Verisign is abusing its position as custodian of the .com and .net domain registry. Site Finder has also drawn legal fire from its competitors.
In September, registrar Go Daddy Software and search engine firm Popular Enterprises both filed lawsuits seeking a temporary restraining order against VeriSign. Both companies accuse VeriSign of "hijacking" surfers who get lost on the Web.
Last time they tried it it broke just about anything that checks for a valid DNS name. To give a few examples: spam-filters which checked for a valid sending domain were broken (since any DNS request to a non-existent domain was redirected to the SiteFinder website), mail programs which checked for a valid target domain failed (as well as feeding the to and from headers to VeriSign), automated systems which check for dead links etc. would have failed, and some people even had printer queues die (because of external DNS lookups). They also managed to get themselves on the wrong end of 3 lawsuits about it.
It looks like they haven't learned. As it says in the article, "buckle in - it's going to be a bumpy ride..."