It all makes sense now…

It all makes sense now… When Neustar decided to launch two new TLD’s (Top Level Domain) .Biz and .US they seemed like odd choices. They also wanted to limit the usage of .Biz to businesses which does make sense.

For those of you not keeping score at home… Originally the main tld’s – .com, .net and .org – were intended to serve sites based on type. Commercial, Network Operator like ISPs and Non-Profits were supposed to each have their own space which they did until around 1995 when the commercialization of the web really took off. When things started getting competitive for VeriSign, then Network solutions, in around 1996-7 the walls came down and sites used whatever

names they wanted to based on what was available and made sense for their purpose. But I digress…

It seems all along Neustar had a longer term horizon than the average eye gave them credit for… As a spinoff of Lockheed Martin, Neustar won a potentially lucrative contract which became available through the Telecommunications Act of 1996. Our government forced AT&T to maintain a backup database of phone records elsewhere and, you guessed it, Neustar is the place. The trick for them will be to properly monetize what they have. When Network Solutions tried this a few years back with something called The Dot Com Directory. It failed miserably. Neustar needs to find a way to do what they want – match customer database records for companies and sell the accurate and cleansed data back.

The Dark Side of Digital Identity. From a Forbes profile of Neustar’s Jeffrey Ganek: “Ganek’s little-known database [of North American telephone numbers] could be a treasure trove of data as Microsoft and big rivals race to gain control of consumers’ digital identities for Web commerce and services. Neustar could mine the information, repackage it and sell it to businesses that want easier ways to reach consumers. …Ganek thinks he can easily double revenue if he can persuade telcos to let him mine their data and run a digital identity database.” [icann.Blog]

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