Ketil Froyn's blog

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Fri, 01 Jan 2010

IDNA failure of URL shorteners

After reading mashable's article on idn phishing today, I started playing with IDNs and a "fake" version of That turned out to be quite interesting.

Firstly, problem with different, but same looking characters, is an issue that many have been aware of for years and years. But since ICANN are fast tracking the IDN ccTLD process, this could start affecting domains on some ccTLDs in 2010.

But while I was playing around with the domain www.pаypа (those as are not what they appear to be), I spotted some failures of IDNA in some very popular applications. Check out these shortened URLs:

Interestingly, all of the above fail. I guess they all need to learn about IDNA and PunyCode.

It was also interesting to note that Facebook actually converted the link to punycode, as: Not bad!

posted at: 16:34 | path: /2010/01 | permanent link to this entry