It may be a dubious distinction along the lines of being the most crime-addled city in the United States or having the longest rap sheet in your high school’s graduating class, but Hong Kong has earned the title of “Most Dangerous Domain” according to a new report by McAfee. In the company’s second annual Mapping the Mal Web report, .hk took top honors with an impressive 19.2 percent of its sites posing a security threat to users.
That title formally belonged to the South Pacific island of Tokelau, which, despite having only 1,500 inhabitants, ended up acquiring a hefty hacker following by giving its domains away for free with banners. China was the closest runner up in this year’s report, with 11 percent of all sites posing a risk to surfers.
As for the safest domain, last year’s winner, Ireland’s .is domain slid over and handed the crown to Finland’s .fi domain, which hosts 99.5 percent harmless sites. Japan’s .jp claimed second safest.
McAfee conducted their research by analyzing 9.9 million heavily trafficked Web sites across 265 different countries (along with generic domain names like .com and .info.) The company looked for adware, spyware, viruses, spam, excessive pop-ups, browser exploits and other red flags in determining which sites constituted a danger to surfers.