Wednesday, November 01, 2017

Trump’s Connections to Russia – They Are Just a Ping Away

Trump’s Connections to Russia – They Are Just a Ping Away

"Why is the Trump Organization continuing to allow hidden subdomains to run to servers hosted in Russia?"

Fascinating. This has nothing to do with politics. It's about the Trump organization, and involves a bunch of subdomains established back in 2013, before Trump was running. But it does create an engaging puzzle.

First, some simple definitions may be useful. A domain is something like www.trump.com, which can (usually) be abbreviated trump.com when typed into a browser. A SUB-domain is something like jobs.trump.com or m.trump.com (a typical variant for mobile browsers) or hotels.trump.com. A sub-domain can be on a different server from its parent domain. I use many sub-domains myself, since they require no additional expense. If you own trump.com, you have to pay more to own trump.net, but you don't have to pay more to own donald.trump.com.

Questions:

1. Why do these subdomains exist? There are hundreds of them, and we're not talking about sensible things like reservations.trumphotels.com, but pure gibberish: (a) each subdomain is named with a seemingly random string of letters, presumably to prevent ordinary users from stumbling on them by mistake; (b) unlike typical legit subdomains, none of them host any web content.

2. Given that they exist, why are they hosted in St. Petersburg, Russia?

Frankly, I have no guesses in response to those questions.

It is mystifyin'!

4 comments:

  1. Well Scoop, being an absolute layman when it comes to the world of high finance or business, but having a fairly good grounding in common sense (which in itself is relatively UNcommon), my guess would be that they are holding those sub-domains for use later when they will be needed and can be renamed but that they have no use for right now. Forward thinking, so to speak. As for why they are hosted in Russia? Why not? I use many websites that are hosted outside the US. One is in Australia, on is in Sweden and yet another is in Germany. Maybe those countries are cheaper as hosts? Not everything that can be made to look evil really is.

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  2. You can't re-name a sub-domain, although you can create as many new ones as you want at any time. One you own boo.com, you are always free to create 1.boo.com or aardvark.boo.com or whatever. There is no need to reserve them. There does not appear to be any reason for those sub-domains to exist, especially if they (1) consist of nonsense combinations of letters; (2) are hosted in a completely different place from the main domains. If it was better to host domains there, they would also host the MAIN domains there.

    I'm not saying anything is evil. It's just completely baffling. It is possible they were hacked, but even in that case I can't see the point.

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  3. Incompetence with an unlimited budget?

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