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Vulnerabilities / Threats

Vietnam Is Riskiest Country Domain, Study Says

Bad guys say good morning, Vietnam, good night, Singapore

The world’s most heavily trafficked Web domain -- .com -- is also now the riskiest, according to McAfee’s fourth annual "Mapping the Mal Web report," released yesterday.

In an analysis of more than 27 million websites designed to identify the most dangerous, McAfee found that 56 percent of the riskiest sites came from the top-level domain of .com. The riskiest country domain is Vietnam (.VN).

The report also found that 6.2 percent of the 27 million websites analyzed pose a security risk -- up from 5.8 percent last year.

"This report underscores how quickly cybercriminals change tactics to lure in the most victims and avoid being caught," said Paula Greve, director of research for McAfee Labs. "Last year, Vietnam’s .VN was a relatively safe domain, and this year it jumped to the third most dangerous. Cybercriminals target regions where registering sites is cheap and convenient, and pose the least risk of being caught. A domain that’s safe one year can be dangerous the next."

Vietnam skyrocketed to third place in the study -- up from 39th last year -- just behind .com and .info. In fact, 58 percent of the country’s registered sites are ranked as risky. By contrast, .SG (Singapore) became safer this year, dropping to the 81st most risky domain from 10th in the third annual report. Singapore’s registration process now requires appropriate documentation when seeking to register any .SG site, which helped to improve its safety levels, according to the Singapore Network Information Center.

The .travel and .edu domains are the safest, with less than 0.05 percent of sites infected. Japan was the safest country domain, for the second straight year, with about 0.1 percent of sites infected.

Have a comment on this story? Please click "Discuss" below. If you'd like to contact Dark Reading's editors directly, send us a message. Tim Wilson is Editor in Chief and co-founder of Dark Reading.com, UBM Tech's online community for information security professionals. He is responsible for managing the site, assigning and editing content, and writing breaking news stories. Wilson has been recognized as one ... View Full Bio

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