Protest of Swedish domain name rules grows

Protest of Swedish domain name rules grows

Summary: Pirate Bay said it is supporting protestors to Sweden's plans to scrutinize all domain name registrations that use "bank" in their name.The Swedish authorities want to prevent people from being duped by phishing scams.


Pirate Bay said it is supporting protestors to Sweden's plans to scrutinize all domain name registrations that use "bank" in their name.

The Swedish authorities want to prevent people from being duped by phishing scams. The rules would only apply to Swedish .SE extensions but protestors say that the practice could create a precedent that other countries will follow and apply to many other names in domain registrations.

The popular Pirate Bay has become a major supporter of the protestors and is collecting signatures. The protest list was started by Binero, a domain registrar.

"To diverge from the democratic country norm of problem resolution post rather than pre registration, and to do it for a common word and name like “Bank” is dangerous. It makes it legally and logically plausible for many groups to lobby for scrutinizing an unforeseeable number of other words and names pre registration as well," said Binero CEO Anders Aleborg.

"All countries have the same problem and lobby groups like our big banks. There is a big risk that this form of net censorship might spread if Sweden does it."

It would seem that all Swedish banks already own their domain names so any new domain registrations with the word bank in them would probably be registered for nefarious reasons.

Phishing scams are a big problem and it would seem this is a sensible measure that would protect people from being duped. It's not clear what other names these types of regulations could also be applied against.

Topics: Banking, Browser, Security

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  • Nice intent, bad idea

    What happens when someone's personal, or company's name is Bank, Banker, Banks or some variation on the word?

    What if I'm trying to start an environmental management site for sustainable fishing called, "The Georges Banks"? Or my new bar and grill, "The Iowa River Bank"?
    • Read the Article!

      The article clearly states: "Sweden?s plans to scrutinize all domain name registrations that use ?bank? in their name."
      Your objection is nonsense. The article is about the government checking up front to see if the name will be part of a scam or a normal name with the word "bank" in it. "Food Bank" would not be a problem but "" would be if it wasn't submitted by Chase Bank.
      • Your explanation doesn't cut it...

        If trying to prevent "" is the reason for regulating the use of "bank", it leaves a huge loophole. What about "" or ""?
  • Crazy idea

    If only legitimate banks can have the word "bank" in their name, what happens if your company is something like "Meadowbank"?

    Will only brothels be allowed to have "sex" in their domain names - thus excluding a number of British counties - Sussex, Essex, Middlesex and even schools e.g. Hugh Sexey Middle School (in Somerset)?

    Before someone takes me to task over this, about 12 years ago when my kids went to Sexey's, they were turned down for a licence to operate a temporary radio station in their charity week because they wanted to call it "Sexey Radio".

    Also, in the UK, you cannot have personalised car registrations if someone deems them offensive. A friend of mine was refused OLG1T... :-)
  • And what about

    blood banks, sperm banks, the West Bank, etc?
    Beat a Dead Horse
    • And what about...

      Red Bank, Bankroll, mountebank, riverbank, outerbank, people with the last name of bank or banks and all the non-English equivalents!
      How about intentional misspellings like duetschebank, or chasebnk, or comercebank, or names with bamk or banc?
      There would be so many rules, you's be better off leaving the name [b]BLANK![/b]
      why not add only for financial institutions, like .gov or .edu?
  • great intent, GREAT idea

    If only all regulatory agencies required web presence to be validated by business presence you wouldn't have the proliferation of domain squaters (sp??) out there who do nothing but siphon a living off of something they have no use for!
    • We're Sorry, but

      Your user name has been rejected as you have no affiliation with soccer, football or rugby; there are not 4 of you; and you are obviously not an entertainment site. please choose a new name.
      • HAHA!!! Net neutrality is an importand issue...

        I'm glad to see the FCC back this up with their
        recent mandates. While I don't really agree
        with requiring companies to run their
        businesses certain ways (comcast can no longer
        legally discriminate bandwidth, i.e. slowdown
        your filesharing) but I REALLY agree with
        requiring companies to be transparent as to the
        method they use for gauging bandwidth. (my
        comcast 5mb never ran above 3mb, even at 4am in
        the mornin, at 8pm it ran at like 300k, I've
        heard they've gotten a little better, but a
        person should get what they pay for.)
  • Overreacting

    What their government said they going to do is try and identify the domains that appear to be banks but are not. That's the intent.

    All of the extremism in these posts is simply fear-mongering, trying to raise the spectre of Big Brother.

    Businesses operating under false pretenses, for example an investment firm that launders money for drug cartels, should all be investigated. While there may be some loss of privacy during the inspection, it is more than offset by the reduced risk to honest (but naive) citizens.
    • Not an over-reaction

      Perhaps, in Swedish there is only one possible use of "bank". In English, there are too many legimate uses of that word to even make it practical to try to investigate all those domains, unless we're to say that it is OK to make legimate users wait weeks or months for approval. Personally, I shouldn't be inconvenienced just because some people are too naive to take basic precautions. If they're that stupid, this won't save them. They'll just fall for a Nigerian scam and still wind up losing their money.

      If fraud is truly a problem, then a better suggestion has already been made on this forum: issue banks their own TLD of ".bank" and regulate its use, just as .gov, .mil and .edu are regulated.