Intensive action was taken last month in our country to block websites that sell counterfeit products. Furthermore, coordinated action by international police services on 30 November dismantled a worldwide platform used to disseminate cybercrime.
Belgium is taking appropriate steps to block rogue websites and has removed 3209 domain names this year already, 720 at the request of the government (in particular the FPS Economy and the Federal Computer Crime Unit) and 2489 at our own initiative.
The number of blocked domain names in our country and elsewhere in Europe is a multiple of that of previous years. According to Europol, this has been achieved thanks to good cooperation between the authorities, the business world and the various national police services.
International cooperation against Avalanche
The large scale police action of 30 November, for instance, was carried out simultaneously in 27 countries, including the Netherlands, Belgium, the United Kingdom and the United States. After more than four years of intensive research, the German Police, the American government, the FBI, Europol, Eurojust and Interpol managed to dismantle an international criminal platform called Avalanche.
Cyber criminals had used Avalanche since 2009 to acquire financial data from victims via malware,and and then conduct transactions. At least 500,000 computers worldwide were infected and controlled by Avalanche. The financial loss is estimated at hundreds of millions of euros.
More than 800,000 domain names were blocked in the joint action. Five people were arrested, 37 buildings searched and 39 servers were seized. Another 221 servers were taken offline. Victims of Avalanche were identified in more than 180 countries.
DNS Belgium screens domain names daily
DNS Belgium has been checking the data of newly registered domain names since June 2010. All newly registered domain names are screened manually every day.
We perform this screening first of all in order to detect clear cases of phishing. At the same time, we ascertain the accuracy of thedata of the newly registered domain names, i.e. we check whether the registrants have entered any meaningless characters or clearly false data when registering a domain name.
Find out more about the verification of WHOIS data.