I recently wrote a couple of blogs where I named five top level domains the IWF had found contained the lion’s share of all csam reported to or found by them in 2018. It included three Country Code Top Level Domains (ccTLDs): Colombia (.co), Russia (.ru) and Tonga (.to). ccTLDs are important because, ultimately, the Government in each country determines which company or entity gets the contract to administer the domain.
After these blogs appeared someone at the IWF contacted me and drew my attention to an article that appeared around the same time as my first blog. I’m sorry I hadn’t seen it beforehand because, in some ways, it tells an even more important story.
When the IWF drew the attention of the .co Registry to what had been happening on their domain the owners were completely shocked and disgusted. But instead of just saying they were shocked and disgusted they got busy.
You can read a fuller version of the story here but the long and the short of it is in their weekly report on 10th May, 2019 the IWF were able to say there were no domains in the .co space that were carrying csam. A big, fat zero.
It turns out there were only ever 44 unique sub-domains within .co responsible for the illegal traffic in child sex abuse material but of course behind that small number of sub-domains could lie a very big one in terms of the quantity of abusive images of children being distributed.
So hats off to the Colombian Registry and well done to them and the IWF for the work they did to bring this about. Colombia is now part of a small but growing list of Registries who take seriously their responsibilities for the protection of children.
I look forward to reporting back about Tonga and Russia. I also look forward to reporting back on how other Top Level Domains copy this marvellous example from Latin America.
Is it too much to hope that even ICANN will stir itself?