ContentWatch Security Blog

Viewing entries tagged with internet-filter


Dec 7, '11

After years of rejecting its applications, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) decided to give the adult entertainment industry the .xxx top-level domain, a move that results in the establishment of a virtual red-light district on the Web.  This week, the sale began.

Today, most web site names end in .com, .net, .org, .gov, or .edu.  The implication of this proposed change is that an adult content / pornographic web site will have the option of using the .xxx domain name.  At first glance, this would seem to make it easier for parents or parental controls software vendors to monitor and protect children and teens from objectionable sites. 

In reality, this change would potentially make it very easy for a curious child to quickly get into trouble.  I envision children getting immediate access to X-rated materials by innocently typing in almost any word with a .xxx name.  Exposure to such images is not quickly forgotten or erased from a young memory.

Knowing how well-funded corrupt businesses operate, I expect pornographers to co-locate their content on existing .comdomains and also on the new .xxx domain, thus increasing the prevalence of pornography sites.  Pornographers won’t likely voluntary give up their successful .com addresses to locate solely on the .xxx domain.  As a result, pornography content will be more pervasive. 

As the owner of a few reputable web sites, I have considered what will happen when .xxx domains go on sale and reputablecompanies are a bit slow to purchase their .xxx domain name to simply protect them.  Our company will jump to buy to avoid the trouble a pornographer can wreak if they do any URL spoofing based on our brand name.

The other overriding challenge is that there is no real legal regulation, in practice.  Indeed, Internet pornography is hardcore obscenity and it is illegal.  But it is so ubiquitous, it is not usually prosecuted.

It’s not likely that Congress would be able to pass a law requiring pornographers to conform to the .xxx domain.  And even if passed, such as law would be relatively unenforced in federal court, if the past is an indicator of the future. Historically, efforts by Congress to regulate smut on the Internet have not been upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court.

In short, as .xxx domains go on sale, we will see an increase in the pervasiveness of pornography and its accessibility.  Ironically, the Internet is used for so many good things too.


Apr 7, '14

Have you ever walked into a co-worker’s office to discuss something and, as you approach, you catch a glimpse at the computer screen and see that he is viewing pornography?  Upon realizing this, your colleague will probably try to cover it up…but it’s too late. 


May 21, '14

Last week, after a government employee’s computer in the General Services Administration (GSA) was infected with a virus, IT staff started an investigation to find the cause.  What they found was shocking. The employee had been visiting dating websites for more than two hours a day, regularly viewed pornography, and even had a user account on his work computer for a pornographic social network. 


May 27, '14

It is easy for companies to take no action in the fight against child pornography. Perhaps it’s because businesses are not too focused on societal issues, especially those uncomfortable issues.


Oct 12, '11

With the headline, “The world's love of Angry Birds could be costing U.S. businesses over $1.5 billion in lost wages, it’s a good time to consider the impact the Internet has on employee productivity. (Source: Business Insider.)
Left to themselves, employees get distracted by Facebook, personal email, downloading videos, web browsing, music streaming, fantasy sports, online shopping, online banking, pornography, gambling, and the like.
Some stats suggest that up to two hours a day are spent by the average employee doing non-work-related Internet use.  If an organization has 20 employees, and each person surfs the web 1.5 hours per day, and the average wage is $25/hour, then the organization is losing $195,000 per year (assuming a 260-day work year.)
In addition to the time lost while roaming the web, employees don’t realize that just by visiting some web sites, a browser can become infected with malware.  Thus, there is a security risk to an organization if it has a “hands off my Internet approach to managing the team.
Finally, if the organization doesn’t take a stand on pornography use on company assets or premises, a sexual harassment lawsuit might result.  This would be due to the company’s negligence at creating a “hostile work environment when a female employee is exposed to pornography against her will.
There are tools to filter and limit Internet use by employees. Angry Birds would then be relegated to a hobby done off premise and after hours.  It’s your choice.


Jan 19, '11

Don't block the Internet


May 13, '14

At the start of the New Year, Boeing initiated a new safety standard test at 25 plants. Typically, a company will raise their safety standards following a dangerous incident or a production mistake; however, this is not the case with Boeing.


Oct 10, '13

With the implementation of the Affordable Health Care Act, security experts are on edge while Internet criminals are standing by for the attack. Since the new Health Insurance went online last week, scammers have taken the opportunity to phish for thousands’ personal information.