November 21, 2017

IBM, Packet Clearing House and Global Cyber Alliance launch Quad9 DNS

The DNS service, located at 9.9.9.9, seeks to improve user privacy & security by blocking malware & phishing attempts.

In the past week, IBM Security and the Global Cyber Alliance have joined hands and launched the new Quad9 Domain Name System (DNS) service. Quad9 claim that their free service will allow consumers and businesses to safeguard their online privacy as it has been designed to work without storing any personal identifiable information (PII) from its users.

IBM, PCH (Packet Clear Housing) and GCA (Global Cyber Alliance) claim that cybercrime will cost a mammoth $2 trillion by 2019. The launch of this service seems to be well timed since an estimated 27% of consumers in U.S, U.K, France & Germany feel that they are capable of staying ahead of online threats of which only a meager 14% claim to have changed their DNS settings on their computers.

Quad9’s DNS is powered by several services including IBM’s X-Force. When a Quad9 user tries to access a malicious website, the site is immediately checked against IBM X-Force’s database of over 40 billion analysed web pages and images.  The other major intelligence entities IBM has agreed to partner with include Abuse.ch, the Anti-Phishing Working Group, Bambenek Consulting, F-Secure, mnemonic, 360Netlab, Hybrid Analysis GmbH, Proofpoint, RiskIQ, and ThreatSTOP.

Jim Brennan, Vice President, Strategy and Offering Management, IBM Security said:

Leveraging threat intelligence is a critical way to stay ahead of cybercriminals. Consumers and small businesses traditionally didn’t have free, direct access to the intelligence used by security firms to protect big businesses. With Quad9, we’re putting that data to work for the industry in an open way and further enriching those insights via the community of users.

“Anyone, anywhere can use it” said Phil Rettinger, president & COO of GCA, explaining that this will be used to track the spread of requests associated with malicious domains.

As of launch, the service has sought its way in the form of clusters in 70 different locations around the world with a good 100 sites expected to be up and running by the end of the year. Since the GCA is a not for profit organization, it will need funds to continue its tryst with Internet security on a global level. Industry experts claim that there is a good chance that the GCA will, in time, be absorbed into the Internet infrastructure’s greater ecosystem.

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