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Nominet Cyber Division to takle Security ‘Blindspot’

December 2018 by Marc Jacob

Nominet announced the launch of Nominet Cyber Security. Nominet Cyber Security aims to address a gap in how organisations approach their cyber-security caused by overlooking the potential of real-time DNS analytics to pinpoint threats.

The division will spearhead Nominet’s international expansion strategy for cyber, and brings together a dedicated product development team, an expanding sales team, a cyber research team and leading industry advisors.

Every organisation uses the Domain Name System (DNS) to connect to the Internet. Every web page to be accessed, email, and IoT device uses DNS in some way as it is a foundational part of the way the Internet works. Criminals inevitably use DNS for a range of activities, including malware communications, data exfiltration and targeted phishing. Each one of those attacks leaves a tell-tale sign. However, relatively few organisations are aware that the technology now exists to effectively ‘listen’ to the DNS, isolating the threat hiding within huge datasets.

The Cyber Division will bring the new NTX platform to market. NTX is hosted in the cloud and sits at the heart of the network - monitoring the vast amount of DNS traffic that flows into and out of an organisation as part of daily business. A unique application combines patented compression techniques, analysis and advanced heuristics to spot anomalies that are a marker of malicious traffic. Once it spots these behaviours, it can automatically sever and blacklist problematic connections.

NTX is being used by the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre as part of its Active Defence programme to great effect, stopping 5000 malicious traffic requests every week, countering malware, phishing and data exfiltration attacks.

The technology is a result of Nominet’s expertise running the .UK internet infrastructure over the last 22 years. Early versions of the technology helped identify security vulnerabilities and helped the internet community and law enforcement tackle significant botnets.

Nominet is targeting both enterprise and public sector clients in the UK, EMEA and the USA. Nominet’s drive into cyber security is being supported by dedicated hires across sales, marketing and R&D. It also includes the formation of an advisory panel, which includes John Noble MBE, and leading DNS expert Steve Crocker, who are committed to working closely with Nominet to grow and differentiate the business in a new market.

Nominet Cyber Security will be headquartered in Oxford, with dedicated teams in London and the USA.

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