Whose Turn is it to Watch the Seized Black Friday Domains?
Someone at the Department of Justice (DOJ) let a number of seized domain names, including AbsolutePoker.com and UltimateBet.com, expire causing the Department to lose control of them for an unknown period of time.
The cyber blunder represents a big black eye for the DOJ and a small victory for anyone who has run afoul of the massive government agency.
The lapse came to light earlier this week when web watchers noticed that someone had replaced the standard, “This domain has been seized…,” message with an advertising feed that’s long been associated with malware downloads.
According to a report on TorrentFreak.com, one of the redirects from the seized sites directs end-users to a site offering $1 iPhones. Not surprisingly, there are no cheap iPhones on the other side, just malware.
Though DOJ agents quickly regained control of the seized domains, the story created a feeding frenzy of criticism from the agency’s critics, including Kim Dotcom, former owner of MegaUpload.com.
In an interview with TorrentFreak, Dotcom blasted the DOJ’s lack of tech savvy and poured venom on DOJ Cybercrime Unit Boss, Jay Prabhu, saying:
With U.S. Assistant Attorney Jay Prabhu the DOJ in Virginia employs a guy who doesn’t know the difference between civil & criminal law. And after this recent abuse of our seized Mega domains I wonder how this guy was appointed Chief of the Cybercrime Unit when he can’t even do the basics like safeguard the domains he has seized. Jay Prabhu keeps embarrassing the U.S. government. I would send him back to law school and give him a crash course in ‘how the Internet works.’
Now that the DOJ has reclaimed control of the lost Black Friday domains and, presumably, sent Prabhu to “How the Internet Works,” the rest of us can focus on real mystery here, who the hell is visiting Absolute.com? After all, the site’s been in the DOJ’s hands for more than four years.