SOURCE: VeriSign

www.verisigninc.com?cmp=pr

March 31, 2011 16:05 ET

Verisign Achieves Critical DNSSEC Milestone by Deploying Security Extensions in .com Top Level Domain

Deployment Safeguards DNS Data in Internet's Largest Domain From Hackers

DULLES, VA--(Marketwire - March 31, 2011) - VeriSign, Inc. (NASDAQ: VRSN), the trusted provider of Internet infrastructure services for the networked world, announced today that .com -- the Internet's largest domain with more than 90 million domain name registrations worldwide -- now supports DNS Security Extensions (DNSSEC).

Deploying DNSSEC in the .com domain signals that Verisign has achieved a critical milestone in improving the integrity of Internet communications and the security of Domain Name System (DNS) transactions. This achievement comes after years of close and careful collaboration between Verisign, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and a variety of Internet stakeholders, from registrars and Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to hardware and software vendors.

"By reaching this critical milestone in DNSSEC deployment, Verisign and the Internet community have made enormous strides in protecting the integrity of DNS data," said Pat Kane, senior vice president and general manager of Naming Services at Verisign. "But the threats against the Internet ecosystem -- whether targeting the DNS or elsewhere -- are unrelenting. That's why Verisign continually invests to ensure the security and availability of the Internet infrastructure."

DNSSEC helps close a known vulnerability within the DNS that has increasingly become a target for hackers and identity thieves. The security extensions apply digital signatures to DNS data to authenticate the data's origin and verify its integrity as it moves throughout the Internet. The extensions are designed to protect the DNS from man-in-the-middle attacks that corrupt DNS data stored on recursive name servers. With DNSSEC, poisoning a recursive name server's cache is much more difficult because DNS administrators sign their data. The resulting digital signatures on that DNS data are validated through a "chain of trust." 

Gartner Research Director Lawrence Orans added, "The importance of DNSSEC in solving issues of trust on the Internet has reached a tipping point with the signing of .com -- one of the most significant milestones in the history of DNSSEC to date. However, there is still more work to be done and the effective deployment of DNSSEC requires collaboration from all parties in the Internet ecosystem."

The deployment of DNSSEC in .com follows Verisign's successful 2010 DNSSEC roll-out in .net in December, .edu in August and the collaborative effort between Verisign, ICANN and the U.S. Department of Commerce to sign the DNS root zone in July. To support and encourage DNSSEC implementation, Verisign also operates a DNSSEC Interoperability Lab. Staffed by Verisign personnel, the lab helps solution providers, ISPs and others ensure the Internet communications ecosystem is ready for DNSSEC.

Verisign provides the registrar community with a variety of tools to reduce the cost and complexity associated with implementing DNSSEC. To assist in driving adoption, the DNSSEC Signing Service is being offered to registrars to help them incorporate signing and provisioning into their infrastructure, while reducing the administrative burden of providing DNSSEC support for their customers. In addition, the Verisign DNSSEC Analyzer is an iPhone application that can assist in diagnosing problems with DNSSEC-signed names and zones. The Verisign Network Intelligence and Availability (NIA) group is also helping domain owners ease the complex management necessary to operate a signed zone by integrating DNSSEC support into its unrivalled Managed DNS service.

Verisign's DNSSEC efforts dovetail with the company's "Project Apollo" initiative, which will dramatically strengthen and scale the .com infrastructure by the year 2020. To achieve this, Verisign is scaling, and in some cases revamping, the infrastructure that keeps .com running. Verisign's 2020 technology roadmap calls for it to increase capacity 1,000 times today's level of 4 trillion queries to manage 4 quadrillion queries per day. The increased capacity will support normal and peak attack volumes based on what the company has experienced as well as Internet attack trends.

About Verisign  
VeriSign, Inc. (NASDAQ: VRSN) is the trusted provider of Internet infrastructure services for the networked world. Billions of times each day, Verisign helps companies and consumers all over the world to connect online with confidence. Additional news and information about the company is available at www.verisigninc.com

Statements in this announcement other than historical data and information constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 as amended and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 as amended. These statements involve risks and uncertainties that could cause Verisign's actual results to differ materially from those stated or implied by such forward-looking statements. The potential risks and uncertainties include, among others, the uncertainty of future revenue and profitability and potential fluctuations in quarterly operating results due to such factors as increasing competition, pricing pressure from competing services offered at prices below our prices and changes in marketing practices including those of third-party registrars; the sluggish economic recovery; challenges to ongoing privatization of Internet administration; the outcome of legal or other challenges resulting from our activities or the activities of registrars or registrants; new or existing governmental laws and regulations; changes in customer behavior, Internet platforms and web-browsing patterns; the inability of Verisign to successfully develop and market new services; the uncertainty of whether our new services will achieve market acceptance or result in any revenues; system interruptions; security breaches; attacks on the Internet by hackers, viruses, or intentional acts of vandalism; the uncertainty of the expense and duration of transition services and requests for indemnification relating to completed divestitures; and the uncertainty of whether Project Apollo will achieve its stated objectives. More information about potential factors that could affect the company's business and financial results is included in Verisign's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Current Reports on Form 8-K. Verisign undertakes no obligation to update any of the forward-looking statements after the date of this announcement.

©2011 VeriSign, Inc. All rights reserved. Verisign, VeriSign Trust, and other related trademarks, service marks, and designs are registered or unregistered trademarks of VeriSign, Inc., or its affiliates or subsidiaries in the United States and other countries. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners.

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