named - MacOS
named can be considered to be the
bind service for Mac, which all comes down to being a DNS server.
A DNS server makes requests to other DNS servers on the internet if it needs to turn a domain name into an IP address, and it doesn't know about that domain name.
A solution to this is caching, which stores addresses and hostnames, so your server doesn't have to make all requests at the corresponding servers.
This means that for every domain that has to be resolved, and isn't known to the cache, a connection (TCP) will be made, or a packet will be sent and received (UDP) by another server.
Visiting a single website with all the JS frameworks and possibly (but rarely) externally hosted images, can result in multiple DNS requests.
There are a lot of programs that have to connect to a server for licensing issues, feeds, ... which also have name resolution.
Some software is known to use
getHostByName() as a connection test to big sites, or their own DNS servers, because it will check internet connection and UDP is a super fast.
(For Example: Huawei's EMUI(Android) makes a DNS Request to Baidu when booting)
But it's not all good
Before panicking, consider what I wrote above, and verify your configurations to see that connections are legit. You could also use whois to check if the connections are actually towards and from legitimate DNS servers.
If they're not all good, or you keep getting high traffic outside office hours etc, consider the fact that misconfiguration of DNS servers and firewall rules can lead to UDP flood attacks and the like.
Another totally paranoid thing to consider after all above failed is that someone activated malware on your system that hides as the
named service, but that is completely out of consideration before being absolutely certain about firewall and configuration.