The latest news from and about SWITCH

Here you will find a summary of the media releases from SWITCH. Please note that the use of any of this content (even just as excerpts) is only permitted provided SWITCH is expressly acknowledged as the source.


Important information for clients

We have received an increasing number of reports from SWITCH clients recently that registrars and Internet service providers are urging them to transfer their domain names immediately, in some cases using aggressive tactics. Clients are apparently being told that they might lose domain names that are not transferred. Please rest assured that you do not need to take any action whatsoever until SWITCH asks you in writing to carry out the transfer.

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Christmas rush: cybercriminals love Advent too

Christmas is a lucrative period for legitimate businesses, but it also brings rich pickings for online criminals. The Swiss Internet Security Alliance (SISA) warns Internet users to take care and explains what to watch for when buying goods online and how you can protect yourself. A healthy sense of mistrust and the right software can help to fend off spam, phishing and other types of deception.

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High-end connection for rapid large-volume data transfer

The Swiss National Supercomputing Centre (CSCS) has become Switzerland's first service provider for the scientific community to offer a high-performance, 100 gigabit per second network connection. Now, up to five times as much data can be transmitted in the same length of time, significantly speeding up the transfer of data between users and the computing centre.

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New legal basis for .ch Internet addresses

The SWITCH foundation will stop selling .ch domain names as of the beginning of January 2015 and successively hand over the related client support to its business partners, the registrars. The basis for this change is the new Ordinance on Internet Domains (ODI), which was passed by the Federal Council today. SWITCH will in future focus on operating the .ch domain name directory and on ensuring that the Swiss Internet remains secure and stable.

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Swiss economy makes online security its priority

Joining forces to confront cybercrime. With this in mind, Internet providers, banks and other partners have founded the Swiss Internet Security Alliance (SISA). SISA has launched a security check which allows users to verify and optimize their devices. Swiss online services are seen as secure and trustworthy. In order to be able to live up to this reputation in the future, leading representatives of the Swiss economy have founded the Swiss Internet Security Alliance (SISA). This cross-sector partnership underscores its members' commitment to security for their services and their customers.

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SWITCH Junior Web Award: The new generation of web designers

The website competition for schools, now in its ninth year, kicks off today. SWITCH wants school students from all over Switzerland and the Principality of Liechtenstein to design their own website together with their teacher. The success story of the Junior Web Award began in 2007, when the SWITCH foundation launched the competition to mark its 20th anniversary. As the pioneer of the Swiss Internet, the foundation wants to promote the latest generation's World Wide Web know-how.

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Separation of functions regarding registration of .ch Internet addresses

The SWITCH foundation is currently tasked by the Federal Office of Communications (OFCOM) with performing a dual role for .ch domain names. In its role as the registry, it is responsible for maintaining the domain name database. At the same time, until March 2015 it also has the role of registrar, which involves selling .ch domain names directly to end customers. This dual role will come to an end next year, and the functions will be separated.

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SWITCHaai: CERN joins AAI Federation

CERN is now using SWITCHaai to simplify access to online services. SWITCH's standardised authentication process allows certain CERN members of personnel to use the online services of affiliated research institutions and universities more easily. The Authentication and Authorisation Infrastructure (AAI) connects researchers around the world with a single login.

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SWITCH Junior Web Award honours 12 projects by classes at Swiss schools

SWITCH is today naming the best websites put together by young people in Switzerland. For the eighth year in a row, a jury has scrutinised web projects by classes at primary and secondary schools to gauge how their design and content enhance the user experience. Some 131 projects were judged this year, and the winners’ hard work will be rewarded with a lot of recognition and some great prizes.

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SWITCH welcomes separation of functions regarding registration of .ch Internet addresses

The public consultation on the new Ordinance on Internet Domains (OID) runs from 12th February 2014 to 17th April 2014. The Ordinance stipulates, among other things, that end customers will no longer be able to register their .ch Internet addresses directly with SWITCH in future and must instead register them via a registrar. SWITCH welcomes this new regulation.

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Slight fall in number of malware cases: trend towards new techniques

Some 2,700 Swiss websites were cleaned of malware in 2013. While this represents a slight fall compared with 2012, SWITCH stresses that malware continues to pose a threat to Internet users and will give rise to new challenges in 2014. Almost 10 million new types of malware were discovered worldwide in 2013. According to the Threat Landscape 2013 report by the European Union Agency for Network and Information Security (ENISA), "drive-by downloads" are the biggest current cyber-threat. Malware includes viruses, spyware, worms and Trojans. Hackers gain access to a website using stolen or decrypted passwords. Simply calling up an infected site can result in harmful software being installed.

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Young people in Switzerland willingly disclose personal information online

Privacy on the Internet is yesterday’s news – at least as far as today’s young people are concerned. This is made clear by the findings of the SWITCH Junior Web Barometer 2013 survey, in which 510 school students answered in-depth questions about their online behaviour. Regardless of the ongoing debates on data security and identity protection on the Internet, the younger generation willingly discloses personal information online. Just over 80% of 13 to 20-year-olds and an increasing proportion of the six to 12 age group can be found by anyone on the Internet with their real name or a photo. Date of birth, favourite hobbies and current relationship status are also shared openly with the networked community. Why? Because it is "cool", reply children, teenagers and young adults.

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SWITCH’s statement on Registrar Alliance

The cooperative Registrar Alliance announced on 15 January 2014 that it will be applying for registry status for the .ch top-level domain (TLD). Registrar Alliance is a group comprising several Swiss registrars. SWITCH has been the registry for the .ch TLD for over 25 years and ensures the security and stability of the Swiss Internet. As an independent non-profit foundation and partner of the Swiss universities, SWITCH puts a great deal of technical expertise as well as unique know-how and experience into accomplishing this task, which is a huge responsibility. The SWITCH foundation is convinced that it is best placed to perform the registry function.

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Opening times between Christmas and New Year 2013/2014

SWITCH's offices will be closed from 24 December 2013 to 3 January 2014.

The "Internet Domains" Contact Center remains open on Monday, 23 December and Monday 30 December until 16:00 h, as usual on other days, with the exception of 24 to 26 December and 31 December to 2 January 2014.

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Domain name prices to fall

Continued steady growth in the number of domain names being registered means that SWITCH is in a position to cut the price of a domain name to CHF 15.50 with effect from 1 February 2014. As a partner of the universities, SWITCH brought the Internet to Switzerland more than 25 years ago. Today, the non-profit organisation with 100 employees at its headquarters in Zurich develops Internet services for lecturers, researchers and students, as well as for commercial customers. It acts as the registry for all .ch and .li domain names, ensuring the security and stability of the Swiss Internet.

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