Difference between revisions of "Verisign"

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Verisign was also well-known for its authentication services, which included business authentication services such as implementing and operating secure networks, utilizing [[SSL]] protocol, encrypting transactions and communications, and user authentication services such as, identity protection , fraud detection, and public key infrastructure.<ref>[http://finance.yahoo.com/q/pr?s=VRSN Yahoo! Finance]</ref> Those services were sold to [[Symantec]] in 2010.<ref>[http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSN1816653320100518 Reuters]</ref> Prior to selling those services, Verisign had 3,000,000 certificates in operation, making it the largest[[CA| Certificate Authority]] behind the encryption and authentication on the Internet.<ref>[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Verisign Verisign, En.Wikipedia.org]</ref>
 
Verisign was also well-known for its authentication services, which included business authentication services such as implementing and operating secure networks, utilizing [[SSL]] protocol, encrypting transactions and communications, and user authentication services such as, identity protection , fraud detection, and public key infrastructure.<ref>[http://finance.yahoo.com/q/pr?s=VRSN Yahoo! Finance]</ref> Those services were sold to [[Symantec]] in 2010.<ref>[http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSN1816653320100518 Reuters]</ref> Prior to selling those services, Verisign had 3,000,000 certificates in operation, making it the largest[[CA| Certificate Authority]] behind the encryption and authentication on the Internet.<ref>[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Verisign Verisign, En.Wikipedia.org]</ref>
  
In October, 2011, Verisign's registry management for [[.com]] domains passed the 100 million mark.<ref>[http://domainincite.com/com-passed-100-million-mark-in-october/ Com Passed 100 million mark in October]</ref> In 2012, its figures showed that it held more than 50% of all registrations for all TLDs.<ref>[http://www.trefis.com/stock/vrsn/articles/108265/verisign-sits-pretty-at-39-registered-half-of-all-domain-names/2012-03-14 Verisign Sites Pretty at 39 Registered Half of All Domain Names, Trefis.com]</ref>
+
In October, 2011, Verisign's registry management for [[.com]] domains passed the 100 million mark.<ref>[http://domainincite.com/com-passed-100-million-mark-in-october/ Com Passed 100 million mark in October]</ref> In quarter 1 2012, its figures showed that it held more than 50% of all registrations for all TLDs.<ref>[http://www.trefis.com/stock/vrsn/articles/108265/verisign-sits-pretty-at-39-registered-half-of-all-domain-names/2012-03-14 Verisign Sites Pretty at 39 Registered Half of All Domain Names, Trefis.com]</ref>  By the end of quarter 2 of 2012, Verisign had 240 million domain names over all of the TLDs it operates, with .com and .net holding 49% of the TLD market share, a drop of 2% from quarter 1.<ref>[http://www.trefis.com/stock/vrsn/articles/146666/verisigns-dropping-com-and-net-is-a-troubling-trend/2012-10-03 Verisign’s Dropping .com And .net Is A Troubling Trend, trefis.com]</ref>
  
 
== Products and Services ==
 
== Products and Services ==

Revision as of 14:58, 16 October 2012

Verisignlogo.png
ICANNWiki Platinum Sponsor
Type: Public
Industry: Internet, Communications, Registry
Founded: 1995
Founder(s): Jim Bidzos
Headquarters: 12061 Bluemont Way,
Reston, VA 20190
Country: USA
Employees: 1,009 worldwide[1]
Revenue: $772 million (2011 Naming Services Revenue)[2]
Website: Verisigninc.com
Twitter: TwitterIcon.png@VERISIGN
Key People
Jim Bidzos, Founder, Chairman, CEO

Pat Kane, SVP and GM of Naming Services
Keith Drazek, Director of Policy
Shane Tews, Global Public Policy, Senior Washington Rep.
Chuck Gomes, VP of Policy and Compliance
Scott Schnell, SVP of Marketing
George Kilguss III SVP and Chief Financial Officer.
Sarah Langstone, Dir. of Product Management
Joe Waldron, VP of Core Naming Services
Dave Stewart, Sr. Mgr. For New Product Development

nTLDStats
TLDs: 13
Registrations: 11,399

More Info: nTLDStats

Verisign is an Internet infrastructure service provider. It is s based in Reston, VA and was founded in 1995. Verisign has offices in Virginia, California, Washington D.C., India, Brazil, China, Australia, Switzerland, and the UK.

Its registry services include operating the authoritative directory for the following TLDs:

Verisign runs 2 of the world's 13 root servers: a.root-servers.net and j.root-servers.net, which are considered national IT assets by the U.S. Federal government.[3] Verisign's average daily Domain Name System (DNS) query load for the first quarter of 2012 was 66 billion, with a peak of 74 billion; this represents a daily average increase of 4 percent over the previous quarter, while the peak decreased 37 percent.[4]

Verisign was also well-known for its authentication services, which included business authentication services such as implementing and operating secure networks, utilizing SSL protocol, encrypting transactions and communications, and user authentication services such as, identity protection , fraud detection, and public key infrastructure.[5] Those services were sold to Symantec in 2010.[6] Prior to selling those services, Verisign had 3,000,000 certificates in operation, making it the largest Certificate Authority behind the encryption and authentication on the Internet.[7]

In October, 2011, Verisign's registry management for .com domains passed the 100 million mark.[8] In quarter 1 2012, its figures showed that it held more than 50% of all registrations for all TLDs.[9] By the end of quarter 2 of 2012, Verisign had 240 million domain names over all of the TLDs it operates, with .com and .net holding 49% of the TLD market share, a drop of 2% from quarter 1.[10]

Products and Services

Verisign provides its services through two divisions, its Internet Services division and the Security Service Division. The Internet Services division includes Naming & Directory Services such as domain name registration for .com and .net, and DNS-related and RFID services.

In January, 2012, Verisign raised the wholesale prices of .com and .net registration by 7%, increasing the price from $7.34 to $7.85. Registrars generally passed the price increase on to customers, and some used it to raise their own prices beyond the 7% increase, with some increasing prices by 10 and 12 percent.[11]

In its 2012 10-K report, Verisign identified ARI Registry Services, Neustar, Afilias, and Nominet as its primary competitors.[12]

Relationship with ICANN

Verisign existed before ICANN, and thus with the establishment of the Internet's oversight body, Verisign was in a place of sustained recognition as the registry of many of the Internet's most important TLDs. While it has given up some of its original TLD oversight, it continues to manage the Internet's most well-known extension, .com, and others.

Sponsorship

Verisign is consistently one of the largest sponsors of ICANN's meetings; they sponsored at the Platinum level or above for all 2011 meetings.[13][14][15] Some commentators attributed the ability of ICANN to secure former U.S. President, Bill Clinton, to speak at ICANN 40 was the especially high level at which Verisign sponsored that meeting.[16][17]

Site Finder Service

Verisign launched Site Finder service in September, 2003, which redirected endusers to its Site Finder search engine after the user attempted to access an unregistered address. ICANN published a report against this policy stating "Verisign violated architectural principles, codes of conduct and good practice," and ICANN declared Site Finder in violation of Verisign's contracts for running the master address lists for .com[18] ICANN then asked Verisign to suspend its Site Finder service.[19] In October, a hearing took place place in Washington, D.C. to review technical issues with the U.S. Department of Commerce, which authorizes Verisign to operate the DNS for .com and .net; VeriSign subsequently shut down the service.

In February, 2004, Verisign sued ICANN claiming it had unlawfully been prevented from adding new features to .com and .net.[20]. In August, 2004, the claim was moved from federal to California state court.[21] Eventually, in late 2005, Verisign and ICANN announced a proposed settlement introducing terms for new registry services in the .com registry. The documents of these agreements are publicly available at ICANN's official website and can be viewed here.

.com Renewals

The dropping of the aforemetioned litigation between Verisign and ICANN seems to have cleared the way for the renewal of the .com registry agreement from 2005 through 2012.[22] The agreement and its appendices can be viewed via the ICANN site, here.

In August, 2012, 3 of ICANN's Constituencies (ALAC, GNSO Business Constituency, GNSO Intellectual Property Constituency) sent a letter to ICANN complaining that the organization held its renewal talks with Verisign behind closed doors and the result is that there are no Thick Whois requirements for the .com TLD.[23]

.net Renewals

Also, in other domain name negotiations with ICANN, Verisign traded the .org TLD in return for continued rights over .com. In mid 2005, when Verisign's contract for operation with .net expired, Verisign and 5 other companies bid for it. Verisign was supported by renowned IT companies like Microsoft, IBM, Sun Microsystems, and MCI. On June 8, 2005, ICANN announced that Verisign had been approved to operate .net until 2011.[24] These agreements have presumptive right of renewal clauses that encourage the registry operators to invest in critical Internet infrastructure. Verisign was subsequently approved to operate the .net registry through 2017.[25]

New gTLDs

In December, 2011, weeks before the opening of ICANN's new gTLD program, the Chinese national registry, CNNIC, announced that it was applying for the IDN equivalents of .company, and .network.[26] This move was seen as potentially problematic given Verisign's own plans to seek the IDN equivalents of their .com and .net TLDs; Verisign had previously said that they intended to apply for multiple transliterated versions of .com and .net.[27] Verisign's Pat Kane later added, in January, 2012, that the company was planning on applying for "about 12" new gTLDs, and noted that most of these were going to be foreign language transliterations of .com.[28] Expected languages included Japanese, Hangul, Chinese, Cyrillic, Arabic, and Hebrew.[29] At that time it was also noted that Verisign had already been chosen to provide registry services for several .brand initiatives.[30]

During its first quarter earnings report, on April 26, 2012, it was confirmed that Verisign would be applying for 14 new gTLDs, 12 of which are foreign language transliterations of .com and .net. They also announced that they had been contracted by 220 new gTLD applicants to provide technical backend services.[31][32] They were the 4th most popular registry services provider, and had been contracted by a total of 12% of applicants.[33]

Security Breach

As per routine for public companies, Verisign filed a quarterly 10-Q with the SEC in October, 2011. The form includes a section asking about any security issues that could compromise the company, and in this instance Verisign disclosed a 2010 hack into limited parts of their computers and servers. While the disclosure suddenly got a lot of attention months later, one commentator argued that it was merely a "minor network breach".[34] Verisign has since reaffirmed that the DNS was not compromised.[35]

Selling Authentication Services Business to Symantec

Verisign's previous logo, a check mark and the tag "VeriSign Secured" is one of the most trusted marks of secured website. Even though providing Internet security was an initial objective of the company, over time Verisign shifted its priority to website management and its domain registration business.

Verisign began by selling some of its services piecemeal. Finally, in May 2010, Verisign sold the entire division to Symantec for 1.28 million.[36] Because of this deal, Symantec now has the right to VeriSign's authentication logo and the "VeriSign Secured" tag for SSL certification. Verisign's Security Services included managing services such as firewalls, intrusion detection and prevention, vulnerability protection, etc. It also provided global security consulting, email security, authentication and digital certificate/SSL validation, and Extended Validation (High Assurance) SSL Certificates.

BulkRegister Accusations

In May 2002, BulkRegister sued Verisign for domain slamming.[37] BulkRegister claimed Verisign "engaged in unfair practices" with a recent marketing campaign that attempted to get domain owners to use Verisign to renew their existing policy. In 2003, Verisign was found not to have broken the law and as a result did not need to pay any fine. However, Verisign was barred from suggesting domain renewal or expiration prospects.[38]

Waiting List Service (WLS)

On December 30, 2001, Verisign proposed the implementation of the Waiting List Service (WLS) to ICANN's DNSO. Based on its proposal, the WLS will provide registrants the opportunity to reserve their preferred domain names that are currently registered by other subscribers. Registrars will directly reserve and transact with Verisign to reserve the domain name under the WLS. A domain name will only be transferred to an individual who made the reservation if the original owner submitted a request to delete the domain name. Verisign proposed a $35 fee for the service.[39]

Verisign revised its WLS proposals twice in response to public comments and discussions with registrars and other organizations, on January 28, 2002, and March 20, 2002, respectively.[40] [41] On August 23, 2002, ICANN approved the renegotiation of Verisign's .com and .net registry agreement to incorporate the proper amendments for the implementation of the WLS for 12-month trial periods despite objections. The final subscription fee was $24.[42]

On January 26, 2004, ICANN General Counsel and Secretary John Jeffrey sent Verisign the Conclusion of the Negotiation regarding ICANN's conditions prior to the implementation of the WLS wherein a special provision stated that the amendments made to the .com and .net registry needed approval from U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC).[43] The implementation of the WLS was delayed due to Verisign's failure to seek approval from the DOC and to make necessary changes to its .net registry agreement.[44]

Verisign filed a legal case against ICANN on February 26, 2004. The company accused ICANN of seriously abusing its technical coordination function by requiring Verisign to stop its Site Finder Service to the .com and .net domain name space. The company also noted the delay of the implementation of the WLS and the inclusion of new procedures not required by the 2001 .com and .net registry agreements, such as the price reduction for the WLS service. According to Verisign, the conditions benefited the different ICANN constituencies but were unfavorable to the company. Furthermore, Verisign pointed out that ICANN denied the company the ability to profit by delaying the WLS while other companies were able to offer similar services to Internet users.[45]

United States District Court Judge Howard Matz dismissed the lawsuit on August 26, 2004. According to the judge, Verisign failed to provide sufficient evidence to prove its anti-trust complaint against ICANN.[46] Verisign, elevated the case to the Superior Court of California in Los Angeles.[47] Verisign and ICANN settled the lawsuit on February 28, 2006. The settlement permanently killed the WLS.[48]

Infrastructure Research Grant Program

The Infrastructure Research Program was launched by Verisign in 2010 as part of the 25th anniversary celebration of the .com TLD. The company awarded a total of $300,000 to four compelling infrastructure research projects. Each project were given $75,000 each and it was concluded in October, 2011. In January, 2012, the company announced that it will award two new $200,000 infrastructure research grants. The two research projects that will be chosen must be compelling and the topic must concentrate on internet access and infrastructural challenges faced by users worldwide particularly in developing countries. Experts in technology and policy development who have great contributions in the growth of the internet industry will judge research project proposals.[49]

History

  • 1995, RSA pioneered two-factor authentication and encryption and Verisign was founded as a 'spin-off' of the RSA security technology to act as a certificate authority.[50]
  • June, 1995, Verisign announced partnerships with Apple Computer Inc. and Netscape Communications Corp. to implement VeriSign's Digital IDs in their software products.[51]
  • January, 1996, Verisign introduced the first online digital certificate issue system at the RSA Data Security Conference in San Francisco.[53] Verisign also announced an agreement with Terisa Systems to develop a new and complete Internet security solutions.[54]
  • January, 1996, Secure Email was launched. Verisign lunched Code Signing with Microsoft in March, 1996. In August, 1996, Microsoft and Verisign announced the availability of client authentication technology for Microsoft IE users by using Verisign Digital IDs. [55]
  • 1997, the First Internet Commerce Transactions Linking Europe, Asia, and the United States was conducted by Verifone and Verisign.[56] The United States Department of Commerce approved VeriSign's plans to issue new Verisign Global Server IDs in June, 1997, which allowed 128-bit encryption.[57]
  • 1997, VeriSign filed to raise $40 million for its public stock.[58] On January 10, 1998, VeriSign went public.[59]
  • July, 1997, Verisign is acquired by SecureIT, a network security service company.[60]
  • October, 1998, Verisign released a fully integrated PKI platform, OnSite 4.0.[61]
  • November, 1998, Verisign offered Y2K testing certs for free.
  • December, 1998, Verisign introduced digital certificate service for Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) servers and gateways.[62]
  • March, 2000, Verisign acquired Network Solutions for $21 billion USD, which was the largest Internet purchase to date.[63][64]
  • May, 2005, Verisign introduced a new 2048 bit VeriSign Class 3 Secure Server CA which was used to sign Secure Site Certificates obtained from thier website for IIS web servers.[66]
  • November, 2005, Verisign's payment gateway business, Paypal, was sold to eBay for approximately $370 million.[67].
  • December, 2006, Verisign introduced Extended Validation SSL Certificates, standard practices for certificate validation and display approved by a group of leading SSL Certificate Authorities and browser vendors.[68]
  • November, 2007, Verisign announced plans to divest in its slower growing units and invest more in website naming and Internet security services.[69] Report shown these steps had cuthalf of its employeers.
  • 2008, Verisign sold its global Digital Brand Management Services business for US$50 million to MelbourneIT.[70]
  • May, 2010, Verisign sold the entire Authentication Services division to Symantec for 1.28 million.[73] Because of this deal, Symantec now has the right to Verisign's old logo and the "VeriSign Secured" tag for SSL certification.
  • August, 2010, Verisign announced that it would move its headquarters from Mountain View, California to Reston, Virginia within the coming year. The move was explained given that 95% of the company's business is based on the East coast.[74]
  • July, 2011, Mark McLaughlin resigned from his position as CEO. He worked with Verisign since 2000, and had been CEO since 2009. Following Mr. McLaughlin's departure, Founder, Chairman, and former CEO Jim Bidzos resumed his duties as CEO.[75] Another prominent executive, CFO Brian Robins, resigned in September, 2011. This happened as Verisign's stocks suffered and rumors of a buyout started circulating.[76]
  • October, 2011, Verisign submitted its plan for a new Verisign Anti-Abuse Domain Use Policy for approval by ICANN. The policy would allow Verisign to scan domains in the .com, .net, and .name namespaces for malware, as well as to create a suspension system for sites knowingly hosting malware. These scans would be conducted quarterly, and a registrar would be able to opt out.[77] The policy would also allow Verisign to shut down websites at the request of law enforcement officials, and possibly for trademark interests.[78] The policy was deemed controversial, with concern about government involvement in the Internet, as well as concern from domain registrars regarding the blurring of lines between registries and registrars.[79] Two days after releasing the proposal, Verisign withdrew the request.[80]
  • October, 2011, Verisign's registry management for .com domains passed the 100 million mark.[82]
  • In March 2012, ICANN renewed Verisign's contract to run the registry for the .com TLD.[83]

Acquisitions

  • 1999 - Verisign aquires Thawte Consulting and Signio.[84]
  • October, 2000 - Verisign aquires GreatDomains.com.
  • December, 2001 - eNIC Corporation and the .cc registry.
  • 2002 - HO Systems
  • 2003 - Guardent
  • 2004 - Unimobile and Jamba
  • January, 2005 - Verisign buys wireless photo messaging firm LightSurf for about $270 million.[85]
  • May, 2005 - Verisign buys Lightbridge, an ecommerce company;[86] and also purchases R4 Global Solutions.[87]
  • July, 2005 - Verisign aquires security intelligence specialist iDefense for $40 Million.[88].
  • March, 2006 - Verisign anounced acquisition of Kontiki for $62 million.[89]
  • May, 2006 - Acquisition of GeoTrust Inc., for $125 million.[90]
  • November, 2006 - inCode Wireless.[91]

References

  1. Fact Sheet, VerisignInc.com
  2. Fact Sheet, VerisignInc.com
  3. Fact Sheet, VerisignInc.com
  4. Internet Grows to More than 233 million Domain names In The First Quarter, MarketWatch.com
  5. Yahoo! Finance
  6. Reuters
  7. Verisign, En.Wikipedia.org
  8. Com Passed 100 million mark in October
  9. Verisign Sites Pretty at 39 Registered Half of All Domain Names, Trefis.com
  10. Verisign’s Dropping .com And .net Is A Troubling Trend, trefis.com
  11. REgistrars Increasing Prices more than the Verisign Price Increase, ElliotsBlog.com
  12. 10k Filing, Investor.Verisign.com
  13. Dakar42.ICANN.org
  14. Singapore41.ICANN.org
  15. SVSF40.ICANN.org
  16. Verisign Drops 150,000 on ICANN Singapore, DomainIncite.com
  17. Bill Clinto to Address ICANN San Francisco Meeting, TLDmagazing.com
  18. "Out-law.com
  19. Out-law.com
  20. CNet News
  21. ICANN.org
  22. Verisign ICANN deal, TheRegister.co.uk
  23. Constituencies Blast ICANNs Closed Door Verisign Com Contract Renewal, DomainNameWire.com
  24. [1]
  25. ICANN Renews Verisign .net Contract, InternetNews.com
  26. Tech.Sina.com
  27. Verisign Wants Com and Net, ManagingIP.com
  28. 2011 Results Earnings Call Transcript, SeekingAlpha.com
  29. Verisign Plans to Apply for About 12 New Top Level Domain Names, DomainNameWire.com
  30. Verisign to Apply for a Dozen New gTLDs, DomainIncite.com
  31. Breaking: Verisign has 220 new gTLD clients, domainincite.com
  32. VeriSign is backend for 220 new TLD applicants and applies for 14 itself, domainnamewire.com
  33. The Registry Back end Market Numbers are In, DomainIncite.com
  34. World notices Verisign Said 3 months ago They Had Security Breach, CircleID.com
  35. Press Release, VerisignINC.com
  36. Reuters
  37. Internet News
  38. The Register.co.uk
  39. Domain Name Wait Listing Service
  40. WLS Revision January 28, 2001
  41. WLS Revision March 20, 2002
  42. 2002-08-23 - VeriSign WLS Proposal
  43. Conclusion of WLS Negotiations
  44. International Chamber of Commerce International Court of Arbitration ICANN vs. Verisign
  45. Verisign Vs. ICANN
  46. U.S. Federal District Court Dismisses VeriSign's Anti-Trust Claim Against ICANN with Prejudice
  47. Verisign Re-files lawsuit against ICANN
  48. Settlement Agreement
  49. Verisign to Award New Infrastructure Research Grants
  50. RSA
  51. bnet
  52. AllBusiness.com
  53. Reference for Business
  54. High Beam
  55. Microsft.com
  56. Highbeam.com
  57. University of Columbia
  58. Cnet.com
  59. Finding Universe
  60. The Free Library
  61. The Free Library
  62. Wap Forum.org
  63. Corporate History, NetworkSolutions.com
  64. Verisign Deals, Money.CNN
  65. Info World
  66. VeriSign
  67. Paypal-Media.com
  68. VeriSign.com
  69. reuters
  70. The Web Host Industry Review
  71. Domain Tools.blog
  72. IT Knowledge Exchange
  73. Reuters
  74. Verisign Shifts Headquarters to Viriginia, BizJournals.com
  75. Verisign CEO resigns, The WHIR
  76. VeriSign CFO quits, DomainIncite.com
  77. Domain Name Wire: VeriSign Proposes Takedown Procedures and Malware Scanning for .Com
  78. CircleID: Of Canaries and Coal Mines: Verisign's Proposal and Sudden Withdrawal of Domain Anti-Abuse Policy
  79. Domain Incite: Registrars not happy with VeriSign abuse plans
  80. Domain Name Wire: VeriSign Withdraws Request for Domain Takedown
  81. Afilias to Apply for Chinese .info, DomainIncite.com
  82. Com Passed 100 million mark in October
  83. .com Registry Agreement Renewal, icann.org
  84. ZDNnet
  85. CNet
  86. News Blaze.com
  87. Pharmamanufacturing.com
  88. Silicon.com
  89. ZDNet.com
  90. Net Craft.com
  91. Compliance and Privacy
  92. CNNMoney