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12|04|2009 12:50 pm EDT

McAfee calls .CM “Most Dangerous Country Domain”

by Frank Michlick in Categories: ccTLDs

By Incurable Hippie (Flickr)

By Incurable Hippie (Flickr)

With some of the recent sales of .CM (Cameroon) domains at various domain auctions, we  asked what those domains were actually worth. Well, it seems their resale value just took another drop, as McAfee called .CM the “Most Dangerous Country Domain” in their latest “2009 Mapping the Mal Web” report. .CM replaces .HK (HongKong) from this spot and .JP (Japan) is considered the world’s safest ccTLD and .GOV the safest non-country TLD.

“This report underscores how quickly cybercriminals change tactics to lure in the most victims and avoid being caught. Last year, Hong Kong was the riskiest domain and this year it is dramatically safer,” said Mike Gallagher, chief technology officer for McAfee Labs. “Cybercriminals target regions where registering sites is cheap and convenient, and pose the least risk of being caught.”

Cameroon, a small African country that borders Nigeria, jumped to the number one spot this year with 36.7 percent of the .cm domain posing a security risk, but did not even make the list last year. Because the domain .cm is a common typo for .com, many cybercriminals set up fake typo-squatting sites that lead to malicious downloads, spyware, adware and other potentially unwanted programs.

More details can be found in McAfee’s report summary.

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December 4, 2009 @ 1:01 pm EDT

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This post was mentioned on Twitter by DomainNameNews: #domains: McAfee calls .CM “Most Dangerous Country Domain”


December 4, 2009 @ 7:33 pm EDT

I hope the software of McAfee is better than their research. As .CM has around 20,000 registered domains, it seems unlikely that over 50,000 are risky. Or did I miss something in school ?

Frank Michlick

December 4, 2009 @ 7:46 pm EDT

@snicksnack: I couldn’t find anything about the amount of .CM domains registered on the Netcom website, do they have numbers publicly someplace?


December 8, 2009 @ 4:08 am EDT

@frank: No they have no numbers published, but I have seen the numbers.

Frank Michlick

December 8, 2009 @ 9:47 am EDT

@snicksnack: Thanks – I’ve emailed someone at Netcom and am waiting for a reply.

Maybe McAfee tested when the wildcarding was still active.


December 13, 2009 @ 10:29 pm EDT

I doubt that Kevin Ham would have had any malware on the wildcarded websites.

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