cybersecurity risk

Why Newly Registered Domains May Be Your Biggest Cybersecurity Risks

Most businesses are familiar with cybersecurity risks such as phishing attacks and the potential for instigating malware from opening emails. The battle against malicious actors on the internet often seems like a never-ending problem and comes from many different directions.

Recent research by the Palo Alto Network, for example, has found that Newly Registered Domains or NRDs are an area of high risk and one which businesses should be aware of. 

What Are NRDs?

Newly Registered Domains are sites that have recently appeared. In many cases are short-lived. Businesses will use them to promote a new product or service, host a conference or event, complement a marketing campaign as well as creating something for brand development or a new parent company.

What’s The Problem?

The major issue, the research found, is that as much as 70% of NRDs could well be malicious and contain malware. They present a cybersecurity risk to businesses and customers alike. 

According to the research, the malware risk is most associated with top-level domain names that use a country code, the current most dangerous being .to (Tonga). The reason for this is that there are less checks in setting up a domain name for this region. Malware, however, can be associated with almost any TLD, including .com.

Cybersecurity risks from these pages include everything from phishing attacks to C2 control hosting and PUP/adware distribution. 

How to Avoid Cybersecurity Attacks from NRDs

Businesses need to be aware of the potential risks of visiting NRDs and have the appropriate cybersecurity measures in place. These include strong DNS security and threat protection as well as URL filtering. 

Working with your IT service provider is important, not just for improving general security but ensuring that specific cybersecurity risks like NRDs are addressed and the appropriate protections put in place.