December, 2017

now browsing by month

 

Data Protection and Privacy Update – Plans for the New Year

As 2017 comes to an end, it's a good time to assess where we are and where we are going with our work to address potential compliance issues with ICANN agreements with generic top-level domain (gTLD) registries and registrars in light of the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

A Look Back at 2017

We started out by working with an ad hoc group of community volunteers to help us create and populate a matrix of user stories of the personal data that gTLD registries and registrars collect, transmit, or publish pursuant to ICANN agreements or policies. The purpose for collecting this information was to inform discussions about whether there are potential compliance issues under ICANN agreements with registries and registrars because of the new law, and to engage with data protection authorities.

We continued this work by facilitating discussions within the multistakeholder community during ICANN Public Meetings, blogs, and webinars.

Also, we engaged the European law firm Hamilton to provide legal analysis on these issues. This analysis, developed in parts, aims to serve as building blocks for community discussions about how to approach GDPR issues in the domain name space. Ultimately, this data will help us outline a legal framework on which to build possible models for compliance with both the GDPR and ICANN's contracts with gTLD registries and registrars.

  • Part 1 [PDF, 252 KB], published on 16 October 2017, described the potential issues that could arise in relation to the WHOIS service in its current form as a result of the GDPR.
  • Part 2 [PDF, 577 KB], published on 15 December 2017, addressed questions that the ICANN community has raised with a goal of providing a better general understanding of the effects of the GDPR on the domain name space.
  • Part 3 [PDF, 440 KB], published today, elaborates on how the processing of data within the scope of WHOIS could possibly be changed to become compliant with the GDPR. This analysis lays out a legal framework to guide our approach to begin building potential compliance models with the community's input.

Charting a Path for the New Year

As we look to the new year, we are mindful that the May 2018 GDPR enforcement date is fast approaching. It's important to plot out where we're going so that we start the year with the energy and direction that we'll need to get us to our goal.

We've made it a high priority to find a path forward to ensure compliance with the GDPR while maintaining WHOIS to the greatest extent possible. Now, it is time to identify potential models that address both GDPR and ICANN compliance obligations.

We'll need to move quickly, while taking measured steps to develop proposed compliance models. Based on the analysis from Hamilton, it appears likely that we will need to incorporate the advice about using a layered access model as a way forward.

Before 15 January 2018, we want to publish for Public Comment proposed compliance models. As a first step, we'd like to hear your feedback and suggestions about the layered access approach described in Part 3 of the Hamilton legal analysis.

To help us meet this deadline, please submit your feedback before 10 January 2018. As we look to settle on a compliance model by the end of January, the community's continued participation and input will be instrumental in ensuring that we've appropriately shaped the model. Email your comments and suggestions to gdpr@icann.org.

To be clear, your feedback about the layered access approach outlined in the Hamilton memo is not intended to replace the ongoing process we published about how to submit a proposed compliance model in response to the 2 November 2017 Statement from Contractual Compliance. We have received one suggested model and know that many of you have been working to finalize your proposals. Your models will help us shape our proposal and we will continue to publish your submissions on our webpage as we receive them.

We look forward to continuing our engagement with the ICANN community in 2018 as we work together on this important issue. As before, we will continue to provide updates via blogs, webinars, and documents on our Data Protection/Privacy Issues webpage.

ICANN Publishes ICANN60 By the Numbers Report

LOS ANGELES – 20 December 2017 – Today, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) published the ICANN60 By the Numbers report, which includes technical, demographic, and attendance statistics. This report summarizes our findings from ICANN's second Annual General Meeting of the new meeting strategy. This report is part of ICANN's commitment to transparency.

By the Numbers Report highlights include:

  • 1,929 checked-in participants, with 718 listing their region as APAC
  • 23% of attendees participating for the first time
  • 407 sessions held, for a total of 696 hours
  • 84,955 schedule website page views
  • 116.6 terabytes of data as network traffic
  • 13% of network traffic was Interrnet Protocol version 6 (IPv6), a 3% increase from ICANN58 Copenhagen

Our goal is to improve on the statistics we collect, and to look for trends by comparing meeting data over time. Learning about trends gives us greater insights into how we are meeting the needs of attendees, and informs the kinds of changes we need to make.

Click here to download the full ICANN60 by the Numbers Report [PDF, 8.4 MB].

If you have questions, please email: meetings@icann.org.

About ICANN

ICANN's mission is to help ensure a stable, secure, and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you need to type an address – a name or a number – into your computer or other device. That address must be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation with a community of participants from all over the world.

ICANN Seeking Mentor for Global Indigenous Ambassador Program for ICANN61

LOS ANGELES – 20 December 2017 – Today, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) announced a call for a volunteer to serve as a mentor for the Global Indigenous Ambassador Program during ICANN61.

ICANN announced the creation of the Global Indigenous Ambassador Program in June 2017. The program establishes two Indigenous Ambassadors, which will be selected from underrepresented indigenous communities, as well as one mentor. Through the inclusion of a broader and more diverse base of knowledgeable constituents, ICANN will be better equipped to support the next generation of the global Internet community.

ICANN is now accepting applications for anyone interested in serving as a mentor for the two Global Indigenous Ambassadors during ICANN61. Mentors must be familiar with ICANN and At-Large, and have been active in one of the constituencies. Mentors must also meet a number of criteria listed on this webpage and follow the requirements for coaches as described in the ICANN Fellowship handbook.

The selected mentor will receive travel and hotel accommodations, as well as a per diem, for ICANN61 in San Juan, Puerto Rico, which will be held from 10-15 March 2018.

The deadline for submitting applications is 8 January 2018. Applications are available here.

ICANN encourages anyone who is qualified to apply for this special opportunity!

About ICANN

ICANN's mission is to help ensure a stable, secure and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you need to type an address – a name or a number – into your computer or other device. That address must be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation with a community of participants from all over the world.

New Report Presents Syntax and Operability Accuracy of WHOIS Data in gTLDs

LOS ANGELES – 19 December 2017 – Today, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) published the WHOIS Accuracy Reporting System (ARS) Phase 2 Cycle 5 Report. This is a follow-up to previous ARS Reports which have been published semi-annually since December 2015.

Read the Report.

The report explores both the syntax and operability accuracy of WHOIS records in generic top-level domains (gTLDs) as compared to the requirements of the 2009 and 2013 Registrar Accreditation Agreements (RAAs). It also examines the leading types of nonconformance, trends, and comparisons of WHOIS accuracy across gTLD types, ICANN regions, and RAA versions.

The ICANN org developed accuracy tests to answer questions about the syntax (format and content) and operability (e.g., does an email sent to the email address provided in the WHOIS record go through?) of a sample of WHOIS records. Then, using statistical methods, syntax and operability accuracy estimates were provided for the population of domains in gTLDs as a whole, as well as for several subgroups of interest.

Key Findings

The analysis found that:

  • Nearly all WHOIS records contain information that can be used to establish immediate contact: In 98 percent of records, at least one email or phone number meets all operability requirements of the 2009 RAA.
  • Approximately 94 percent of email addresses, 67 percent of telephone numbers, and 98 percent of postal addresses were operable (see Table 1 below for more information).

Table 1: Overall gTLD Operability Accuracy by Contact Mode (95 percent confidence interval)

  Email Telephone Postal Address All Three Accurate
All Three Contacts (Registrant, Technical, Administrative) Accurate 93.8% ± 0.4% 66.9% ± 0.8% 98.4% ± 0.3% 63.4% ± 0.9%
  • In terms of syntax accuracy, approximately 99 percent of email addresses, 90 percent of telephone numbers, and 89 percent of postal addresses were found to meet all the requirements of the 2009 RAA (see Table 2 below for more information).

Table 2: Overall gTLD Syntax Accuracy to 2009 RAA Requirements by Contact Mode (95 percent confidence interval)

  Email Telephone Postal Address All Three Accurate
All Three Contacts (Registrant, Technical, Administrative) Accurate 99.6% ± 0.1% 90.2% ± 0.5% 88.9% ± 0.6% 81.5% ± 0.8%

The report also shows a breakdown of accuracy rates by ICANN region (see Figure 1 below for more information).

Figure 1: Overall gTLD Syntax and Operability Accuracy by ICANN Region

Overall gTLD Syntax and Operability Accuracy by ICANN Region

Next Steps

Results included in the report have been provided to ICANN's Contractual Compliance team, which will assess the types of errors found and follow up with registrars on potentially inaccurate records. If WHOIS inaccuracy and/or format complaints are created from the WHOIS ARS data, ICANN Contractual Compliance will issue tickets in accordance with the Contractual Compliance Approach and Process [PDF, 292 KB]. Compliance provides updates on a quarterly basis, which include updates on WHOIS ARS tickets and can be found here. In response to ICANN community requests, the ICANN org now publishes additional metrics on the WHOIS ARS Contractual Compliance Metrics page here.

The ICANN org will begin work on the next WHOIS ARS report in January 2018, with a targeted publication date of June 2018.

Learn more:

About ICANN

ICANN's mission is to help ensure a stable, secure, and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you have to type an address into your computer - a name or a number – into your computer or other device. That address must be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation with a community of participants from all over the world.

Do You Have a Domain Name? Here’s What You Need to Know.

Part III – Having Issues Transferring Your Domain Name?

One of the primary purposes of ICANN's Transfer Policy is to provide you with the option to freely move your domain name from one registrar to another. In our last blog, we explained how to do this. If you still have problems making a transfer, here is some information on why you might be encountering issues and some additional information on what you might be able to do about it.

The first thing you should know is that there are a few instances when your registrar cannot transfer your domain name, such as if it is the subject of an ongoing Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP), Transfer Dispute Resolution Policy (TDRP) or Uniform Rapid Suspension (URS) proceeding. Your registrar also cannot transfer your domain name if it is subject to a court order. Additionally, as we explained in the last blog, your domain name cannot be transferred if it is subject to a 60-Day Change of Registrant lock.

There might be other reasons your registrar is denying your transfer request. This will depend on the terms and conditions of your registration agreement with the registrar. For example, there is evidence of fraud, your name is not listed as the registrant of record, or if you have an outstanding payment for a previous registration period. Non-payment for a pending or future registration period however is not grounds for denial of transfer.

It is important that you understand the terms and conditions in your registration agreement so that you know what to expect if you decide to make a transfer.

What to Do?

There are some common issues you might run into when transferring a domain name.

You can't transfer the domain name because it is in a 60-day Change of Registrant lock. This rule is in place to prevent unauthorized changes to your contact info for the purposes of making unauthorized transfers, which could result in making the domain name un-recoverable. If you want to opt out of this protection, you can make the request to your registrar prior to making changes to your contact information.

You cannot transfer the domain name because your request falls within 60 days of the initial registration or a previous transfer. This rule is put in place for your protection. Some registrars however may choose to grant exceptions to this rule so you can contact your registrar directly to ask if they'll allow you to initiate a transfer during this period.

You cannot transfer the domain name because it is in 'Registrar Lock' or 'Client Transfer Prohibited' status (sometimes used to protect against unauthorized transfers). You can change these statuses by contacting your registrar. Some registrars may provide you with the option to change these statuses yourself via your control panel. In either case, the registrar must provide you with the AuthInfo code needed to change the status within five calendar days of your request.

You should know that you can always contact your registrar directly for assistance with transferring, even if you registered your domain name through a reseller or another service provider. ICANN is not a registrar and does not transfer domain names. If you do not know who your registrar is you can search here to find out. If after you've contacted the registrar and you are still not successful in your attempt to transfer your domain name, you can submit a formal Transfer Complaint with ICANN.

Click here to read 5 things Every Domain Name Registrant Should Know About ICANN's Transfer Policy

FAQs: Transferring Your Domain Name

More Information on Domain Name Transfers

More Information on Transfer Complaints [PDF, 124 KB]

More Information about Domain Name status codes, such as 'Registrar Lock' or 'Client Transfer Prohibited'

Learn more about ICANN's Transfer Policy (Effective as of 1 December 2016).


The 'Do You Have a Domain Name? Here's What You Need to Know' educational series is part of ICANN's broader efforts to help you better understand the ICANN policies that affect you, your role in the Domain Name System (DNS), and the role of the ICANN organization, registries, and registrars in the DNS ecosystem.

Update on the Root KSK Rollover Project

The ICANN org is today announcing that it will not roll the root zone KSK in the first quarter of 2018.

We have decided that we do not yet have enough information to set a specific date for the rollover. We want to make clear, however, that the ICANN org is committed to rolling the root zone KSK and we will continue to discuss this important process with the community, gather their feedback and give all interested parties advance notice of at least one calendar quarter when we set the date for the rollover.

Furthermore, we are soliciting input from the community to help determine, if possible, appropriate objective criteria to measure the possible negative impact of the root KSK rollover on Internet users, and acceptable values for those criteria before a rollover. This is in accordance with the bottom-up, multi-stakeholder model that has been so successful for ICANN policy development.

On 27 September 2017, the ICANN org announced it was postponing the root zone KSK rollover for at least one quarter, leaving open the possibility the root KSK rollover might occur in the first quarter of 2018. We have since realized that our analysis and preparation will require additional time.

In a previous post, we described our analysis of recursive resolver trust anchor configuration information reported using the protocol defined in RFC 8145, Signaling Trust Anchor Knowledge in DNS Security Extensions (DNSSEC). Our analysis revealed that about 4% of the approximately 12,000 DNSSEC-validating resolvers reporting during the month of September 2017 were configured with only KSK-2010 (the shorthand for the current root KSK) and would have been unable to resolve DNS queries after the rollover occurred.

The ICANN org's decision to postpone the rollover was based on the concern that we did not understand why those resolvers were not properly configured, and we needed time to investigate.

Since then, we have attempted to contact the operators of 500 addresses that had reported a resolver configuration with only KSK-2010 instead of the correct configuration of both KSK-2010 and the new KSK, KSK-2017. Ideally, that investigation would have revealed a set of clear causes for the improper configuration, allowing further communication and actions to be targeted at addressing those specific issues. But in the end, the analysis was not as conclusive as we would have hoped.

In our initial attempt, we received a response from operators of approximately 20% of the 500 addresses. Of those addresses whose operators we could contact, 60% came from address ranges known to host devices with dynamic addresses, such as routers of home broadband users and ephemeral virtual machines, making these resolvers extremely difficult (if not impossible) to track down. About 25% of the addresses corresponded to a resolver forwarding on behalf of another resolver that was reporting only KSK-2010. Since the address of the device reporting the incorrect configuration was not the actual source resolver, it is extremely difficult (if not impossible) to identify the true source address of the resolver that was reporting only KSK-2010.

To proceed with the root KSK rollover, the ICANN org must have confidence that the rollover will not have an unacceptable negative impact on Internet users. The challenge we have encountered since we began to analyze the RFC 8145 trust anchor configuration reports from resolvers is assessing the impact on users.

We can make a number of assumptions: for example, it is unlikely that a recursive resolver running at a dynamic address could support a large number of users since it does not offer a stable address for any devices to send queries to for resolution. But ultimately, determining potential user impact based on the data available to us is difficult and we are therefore soliciting the community's input.

Input and discussion on acceptable criteria for proceeding with the KSK roll will take place on an existing email list that is already being used for discussion of the root KSK rollover. We encourage anyone interested in contributing to join the mailing list by visiting the web page here.

The ICANN org will monitor this mailing list and beginning on 15 January 2018, we will develop a draft plan for proceeding with the root KSK roll based on the input received and discussion on the mailing list. The plan will be published by 31 January 2018 and undergo a formal ICANN public comment process to gather further input. We will hold a session at ICANN61 in San Juan, Puerto Rico, to discuss the plan and hear from the community in person. Our intent is to have a revised plan available for community review and public comment prior to ICANN62 in Panama City, Panama, with a final plan published soon thereafter.

Throughout the process we'll continue to keep the community updated on the root KSK rollover project's progress.

President’s Corner: Finances & Planning for the Next Two Years

One of my personal priorities for my role in ICANN is continuing to improve ICANN org's efforts to be transparent, accountable and accessible. In this spirit, I am sharing something the Executive Team and I have been spending a lot of time lately, and an area of great focus for us in the coming year. By now I hope you have also read the blog by Cherine on this topic.

As I mentioned in the recent Quarterly Stakeholder Call, we saw slower funding in the first quarter of FY18 by $1m versus our approved budget, with lower domain name registrations than planned. So, we believe the FY18 funding could remain flat compared to FY17's funding, instead of the growth budgeted in FY18. We need to make some changes to address that. And, at the same time, we are currently planning for the next two years out – FY19 and FY20. We are also forecasting lower funding for FY19 compared to the approved FY18 budget. As Cherine mentioned, there is also a discussion going on about the Reserve Fund, and we need to factor that into our planning.

As a non-profit it is important that we stay within our budget. That takes some work but I feel confident the ICANN community will support us in this effort. The reality is, ICANN has a significant budget but not an infinite budget. We need to make some changes, and can't do everything we are asked. You as the ICANN community will feel the impact of some of those changes. We have already begun addressing this by focusing on finding efficiencies where possible.

For example, when someone leaves ICANN org, we are taking a close look at the vacancy, the team's needs and other people's availability and skills before deciding if we are going to fill the role. We are also looking at our staff travel practices for ICANN meetings and other ICANN org commitments, reviewing our language services support levels and offering, and trying to consolidate our collateral and the volume of reports. We are looking at what projects we could delay or stop, and reviewing things with a fresh set of eyes – just because we've always done something a certain way, doesn't mean that's the right choice now. These are just a few examples. We are examining a lot of our internal policies and spending levels, and looking closely at how we do things to make sure we do the right thing, in the most efficient way. It is important that we govern our work to our means.

I wanted to share this with you now, to let you know you will occasionally be seeing some changes in how we operate. Some will be bigger than others, and for the ones that impact you, you will be asked to participate in public comment periods, discussions around priorities and strategic planning, and sessions with ICANN org to help us understand what is most important to you. There will be a budget out for public comment mid-January 2018 and I hope you will review and participate actively.

Of course, you are in charge of the final version of the budget. I look forward to the result of your input.

Chairman’s Blog: Year End & Well Wishes

I am writing to you from the 12th annual meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF), in Geneva, Switzerland, where I am here with some of my Board colleagues and members of the ICANN community engaging with the broader Internet governance community. Thematic issues that can impact our technical mandate are being discussed here. These issues include privacy and data protection, jurisdiction, intellectual property, cyber security and many more. We are represented in those discussions, so that our points of view are considered as policies, legislations and priorities are formed around the world.

If you are at the IGF, please join us for an ICANN Open Forum session; you can find more details about our participation here.

In this blog, I want to provide you with an update on some outstanding items and our final Board meeting of the year as December wraps up.

ICANN Reserve Fund

As you may recall from my blog on the Board's Priorities for the year, the Board is concerned about the depletion in the ICANN Reserve Fund.

We recently concluded a public comment period on an updated rationale and target level for the Reserve Fund. While we await the final staff summary report (which should be published shortly), it looks like there is a general consensus from the community that the Reserve Fund should have a target level of a minimum of 12 months of operating expenses. Based on the expected findings of that report, we anticipate discussing a resolution to this end at our next board workshop in early February 2018.

Now that the public comment period has closed, we have begun discussion and debate inside ICANN org and the Board on the options available for replenishing the Reserve Fund. As of the end of September 2017, the Reserve Fund was at the five-month level. We are therefore facing a shortfall of approximately seven months, equivalent to $80 million U.S. dollars (USD), based on our current budget. We plan to release another paper for public comments early next year to solicit community input on how best to replenish the Reserve Fund.

Pressures on the FY19 Budget

Over the past years ICANN's funding has consistently increased, which has enabled ICANN org to respond flexibly to requests to fund projects that are proposed outside the normal budgeting cycle. This flexibility is unlikely to continue, as funding is appearing to stabilize for the foreseeable future at the FY17 level of approximately $135 million USD per fiscal year. For your information, the FY18 funding budget is $143 million USD.

This projected funding level will necessitate making trade-off decisions when developing the FY19 Budget. Furthermore, it will be challenging during the next fiscal year to undertake new projects that have not been planned for in the FY19 Budget, unless and until ICANN org has concluded that available contingency funds can responsibly be allocated for that purpose or has identified corresponding budget savings to offset unplanned spending. Göran expands on this issue in his blog.

We must also look beyond the FY19 Budget. The community, the Board and ICANN org must soon begin discussions about longer-term goals and strategic planning.

Board Resolutions from 13 December Meeting

We held our final Board meeting of 2017 last week, and had a productive session. We passed four resolutions, including appointing Kim Davies to the role of PTI President, and appointing the Board directors to PTI. Congratulations to all on their new positions. We also approved the at-risk component of Göran Marby's compensation for the first six months of FY18, and agreed with Göran on his goals for the second half of FY18. Read the resolutions in greater detail here.

Progress of Board Member Integrity Screening

On 1 November, I posted a blog discussing the issue of Board member integrity screening and outlining the steps we were taking. We requested that four directors and three liaisons be screened, and I am pleased to say all seven screenings have just been completed and are now in the regular process of being reviewed.

With all that being said, on behalf of the Board I wish everyone a happy and healthy year ahead. I hope you have a peaceful holiday season and look forward to 2018.

Data Protection/Privacy Update: Response from Legal Firm Hamilton to Community Questions Now Available

LOS ANGELES – 18 December 2017 –The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers ("ICANN") today published a memo from the Hamilton law firm, which provides responses to questions raised by the community regarding generic top-level domain name (gTLD) registration directory services and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). This memo is the second in a series [PDF, 253 KB] of memoranda that will address these matters. Read the memo here [PDF, 577 KB].

About ICANN

ICANN's mission is to help ensure a stable, secure and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you need to type an address – a name or a number – into your computer or other device. That address must be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation with a community of participants from all over the world.

ICANN Office of the Ombudsman 2017 Annual Report

LOS ANGELES – 18 December 2017 – Herb Waye, ICANN Ombudsman, is pleased to announce the publication of the ICANN Office of the Ombudsman 2017 Annual Report.

View the report.

The report is available in all official ICANN languages. If you have any questions for the Ombudsman, contact him at ombudsman@icann.org.

About ICANN

ICANN's mission is to help ensure a stable, secure, and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you need to type an address – a name or a number – into your computer or other device. That address must be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation with a community of participants from all over the world.

A Look Back at Our Africa Engagement in 2017

As the year comes to an end, we wanted to reflect on milestones achieved with the support of you, our community. Your dedication, relentless effort, and collaboration with us, ensured that the 2017 flagship events and meetings were not only successful, but also seamless.

2017 saw new initiatives that helped increase the capacity and awareness of specific stakeholder groups and promoted their meaningful participation in ICANN and the wider Internet Governance ecosystem. We also developed better collaboration with the regional economic blocks in Africa, participating in ECOWAS, CRASA, SATA, EACO and AUC meetings to further our regional engagement with governments.

Key Highlights of 2017

  • The First Capacity Building Workshop: In January, ICANN held the first high level Government Advisory Committee (GAC)'s workshop. It marked the culmination of our long planning and coordination efforts with various GAC members, the GAC Underserved Regions Working Group and the Government Engagement team. The workshop was the first of its kind and is now a model for other ICANN regions. Göran Marby attended this meeting during his inaugural visit to the region, as President and CEO of ICANN.org.
  • Workshop for the West Africa Telecommunication Regulators Assembly (WATRA): Inspired by the GAC workshop, WATRA requested a similar workshop for its members. It took place on 25 and 26 April. The event was hosted by the Liberian Telecommunication Authority and drew 82 participants. Africa Internet pioneers Prof. Nii Quaynor and Prof. Alex Corenthin were among the speakers.
  • Africa Internet Summit (AIS) –[21 May to 2 June in Nairobi, Kenya]: This year saw a few key sessions.
    • ICANN DAY – This has become a signature day at the AIS, dedicated to introducing the community and newcomers to the current work at ICANN. Current topics covered this year were: KSK Rollover, ICANN registrar accreditation process and an overview of the policy development processes.
    • Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs) Workshop: Organized to raise awareness for Africans to join the IDN working groups and promote African scripts online, such as the successful case of the Ethiopic script. We are pleased to report that new community members joined the Label Generation Rules Panel for the Latin script after this workshop. More will be organized next year.
    • Academic Outreach: We seized the opportunity of having visiting ICANN staff in the region, to further our engagement with academia, please read our recent blog here.
  • ICANN59 in Johannesburg, South Africa: The policy forum witnessed a large turnout from the African community. We look forward to this increasing the number of Africans effectively participating in the new Empowered Community framework. To learn more, read our ICANN59 blog.
  • Africa DNS Market Study: As part of our outreach efforts, to support and develop the regional DNS Industry, we released the first Report on the Africa Domain Name System (DNS) Market in June.
  • The Africa DNs Forum turned Five: This marked an important milestone in our combined efforts with our partners to further the growth of the DNS and Internet industry in Africa. Africa DNS Industry players used the event to praise the African Internet community efforts throughout the years. For more on this, read our blog here.

Going into 2018

We will continue to further advance our engagement and capacity building by:

  • Partnering with existing regional events and platforms, like the Africa Internet Summit and the Africa DNS Forum.
  • Leveraging topical webinars and our existing online platforms such as ICANN learn, to boost our reach and enhance our capacity-building initiatives.
  • Initiating and/or confirming Memorandums of Understanding with the institutions in charge of regulation of the Telecommunications and digital economy in the African region.

At the same time, to help us evaluate our performance and plan ahead, we are asking for your continued input and even greater involvement in ICANN by Africa's technical community.

Once again, we want to thank you - our community, for your dedication and support. We wish you all Happy Holidays.

Merci, Asante Sana, Akpe Kaka, Shukran, Obligado, Nagode, Thank you…

A recap of our 2017 LAC-i-Roadshows

The LAC+i Roadshow, a project of the Latin America and the Caribbean Strategy, travels across the region to do outreach on key topics related to the critical infrastructure of the Domain Name System (DNS). The regional ICANN community holds four roadshows per year for each of the following sub-regions: the Caribbean, the Andean Region, South America and Mexico/Central America.

Download our infographic for a quick overview of our 2017 LAC-i-Roadshows.

A recap of our 2017 LAC-i-Roadshows

Kim Davies Appointed VP, IANA Functions and President, PTI

LOS ANGELES – 15 December 2017 – The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) announced today that Kim Davies, Director of Technical Services, Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA), has been appointed to the position of Vice President, IANA Services and President, PTI.

Public Technical Identifiers (PTI) is responsible for the operational aspects of coordinating the Internet's unique identifiers and maintaining the trust of the community to provide these services in an unbiased, responsible and effective manner.

Following Elise Gerich's departure announcement, the ICANN organization, in conjunction with the PTI Board, conducted an extensive and exhaustive search for a replacement. The opening attracted a wide array of applicants, many of which were well qualified.

As VP of IANA Services, Davies will be reporting to the President of ICANN's Global Domains Division (GDD), Akram Atallah. "Kim was a natural choice for this position. He has a deep and wide understanding of both IANA and PTI, which he has cultivated during his long tenure as Director of Technical Services," said Atallah. "I'd also like to extend our gratitude to Elise, who was pivotal in establishing the IANA Department as an example of reliability and customer service."

In this role, Davies will be responsible for ensuring that the IANA functions are performed in a secure, stable, and efficient manner with a commitment towards operational excellence. As President of PTI, he will also serve as one of the five directors on the PTI Board.

"The IANA team has worked hard to establish themselves as a leader within the technical community," said Davies. "As we move forward, I want us to focus on continuing to optimize our business process and solidifying the community's confidence in our ability to deliver on the services we provide."

Davies will be assuming the role starting 1 January 2018, following Gerich's official departure from the organization.

Davies joined the organization in 2005, serving as Manager of Root Zone Services and Technical Liaison prior to his role as Director of Technical Services. Prior to joining ICANN, he worked as Technical Policy Advisor at the Council of European National Top Level Domain Registries, and has been involved in various facets of the ICANN community since the mid-1990s.

About ICANN

ICANN's mission is to help ensure a stable, secure and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you need to type an address – a name or a number – into your computer or other device. That address must be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation with a community of participants from all over the world.

ICANN Publishes Updated gTLD Marketplace Health Index

LOS ANGELES – 14 December 2017 – The Internet Corporation for Names and Numbers (ICANN) today announced that ICANN published an update to the gTLD Marketplace Health Index (Beta), which presents statistics and trends related to generic top-level domains (gTLDs).

View the Health Index [PDF, 2.65 MB]

The gTLD Marketplace Health Index (Beta) was first published in July 2016. ICANN plans to publish these statistics twice a year to track progress against its goal of supporting the evolution of the domain name marketplace to be robust, stable and trusted. A community Advisory Panel is working with ICANN to refine the Index in preparation for publishing version 1.0.

About ICANN

ICANN's mission is to help ensure a stable, secure and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you need to type an address – a name or a number – into your computer or other device. That address must be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation with a community of participants from all over the world.

ICANN Publishes Report of Public Comments on PTI and Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) Draft FY19 Plans

LOS ANGELES – 14 December 2017 – The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) today published the Report of Public Comments [PDF, 128 KB] on draft FY19 operating and budget plans for Public Technical Identifiers (PTI) and the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA). This detailed report includes responses to each of the 16 individual comments submitted. The report has been structured by comment theme and is accompanied by a sortable spreadsheet, to make it easier to find related comments and responses.

The PTI Board will consider PTI's budget at its January 2018 meeting and the ICANN Board will consider IANA's budget at its February 2018 meeting.

The Draft FY19 PTI and IANA operating plans and budgets documents are published here.

About ICANN

ICANN's mission is to help ensure a stable, secure and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you need to type an address – a name or a number – into your computer or other device. That address must be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation with a community of participants from all over the world.

Proposed Incremental Changes to the ICANN Meetings Strategy

Open Date: 14 December 2017 Close Date: 01 February 2018
Originating Organization: ICANN Meetings
Categories/Tags: Events / Conferences
Brief Overview: This Public Comment seeks community input on proposed incremental changes to the current strategy for ICANN Public Meetings. The proposed changes were developed by community leaders during a call on 17 August 2017 and subsequently detailed in a report for the purposes of this consultation.
Link: https://www.icann.org/public-comments/proposed-changes-meetings-strategy-2017-12-14-en

ICANN Organization Publishes Reports on the Review of the Community Priority Evaluation Process

ICANN Organization Publishes Reports on the Review of the Community Priority Evaluation Process

LOS ANGELES – 13 December 2017 – The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) today published three reports on the review of the Community Priority Evaluation (CPE) process (the CPE Process Review). The CPE Process Review was initiated at the request of the ICANN Board as part of the Board's due diligence in the administration of the CPE process. The CPE Process Review was conducted by FTI Consulting Inc.'s (FTI) Global Risk and Investigations Practice (GRIP) and Technology Practice, and consisted of three parts: (i) reviewing the process by which the ICANN organization interacted with the CPE Provider related to the CPE reports issued by the CPE Provider (Scope 1); (ii) an evaluation of whether the CPE criteria were applied consistently throughout each CPE report (Scope 2); and (iii) a compilation of the reference material relied upon by the CPE Provider to the extent such reference material exists for the eight evaluations which are the subject of pending Reconsideration Requests that were pending at the time that ICANN initiated the CPE Process Review (Scope 3).

FTI concluded that "there is no evidence that the ICANN organization had any undue influence on the CPE Provider with respect to the CPE reports issued by the CPE Provider or engaged in any impropriety in the CPE process" (Scope 1) and that "the CPE Provider consistently applied the criteria set forth in the New gTLD Applicant Guidebook [ ] and the CPE Guidelines throughout each CPE" (Scope 2). (See Scope 1 report [PDF, 159 KB], Pg. 3; Scope 2 report [PDF, 312 KB], Pg. 3.)

For Scope 3, FTI observed that two of the eight relevant CPE reports included a citation in the report for each reference to research. In the remaining six reports, FTI observed instances where the CPE Provider referenced research but did not include the corresponding citations in the reports. Except for one evaluation, FTI observed that the working papers underlying the reports contained material that corresponded with the research referenced in the CPE reports. In one instance, FTI did not find that the working papers underlying the relevant report contained citation that corresponded with the research referenced in the CPE report. However, based on FTI's observations, it is possible that the research being referenced was cited in the CPE Provider's working papers underlying the first evaluation of that application. (See Scope 3 report [PDF, 309 KB], Pg. 4.) The findings will be considered by the Board Accountability Mechanisms Committee (BAMC) when the BAMC reviews the remaining pending Reconsideration Requests as part of the Reconsideration process.

"The Board appreciates the community's patience during this detailed investigation, which has provided greater transparency into the CPE evaluation process," said Cherine Chalaby, Chairman of the ICANN Board. "Further, this CPE Process Review and due diligence has provided additional facts and information that outline and document the ICANN organization's interaction with the CPE Provider."

For more information about the CPE process and the CPE Process Review, please visit https://newgtlds.icann.org/en/applicants/cpe.

Our Communications in Latin America and the Caribbean During 2017

This blog is becoming a tradition! It's interesting to see how far we have come by reading our previous blogs: 2015 LAC Communications highlights and 2016 LAC Communications highlights.

For the third year in a row, as the year comes to an end, we are happy to share our accomplishments with you. This time, we created an infographic so that instead of reading about our progress and milestones, you can visualize them. Download our 2017 LAC Communications infographic – I hope you like it!

Also, be sure to stay tuned for our 2017 LAC Year in Review report, which we will launch soon. This report will highlight more of our work in Latin America and the Caribbean (read the 2016 LAC Year in Review).

Our Communications in Latin America and the Caribbean During 2017

Tec Monterrey and the Fourth LAC DNS Forum

Some say the key to sustainable development is the knowledge economy. A place that exemplifies this idea in the Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) region is Monterrey, Mexico. The city is home to the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education – also known as Tec. This educational leader promotes knowledge, from creation to application, for the whole scientific spectrum. One area is Internet services, and it is not by chance that NIC.mx is proudly located in Monterrey.

On 16 November, we had the privilege to visit Monterrey to run the Fourth LAC Domain Name System (DNS) Forum, hosted by NIC.mx. ICANN supported the forum, along with the Latin American and Caribbean ccTLDs Organization (LACTLD), the Latin American and Caribbean Address Registry (LACNIC), the Internet Society (ISOC), and the Public Interest Registry (PIR). We engaged with the local community by including the forum in the Monterrey's Entrepreneurship Festival incmty.com, a yearly gathering for technology professionals, startups, investors, and researchers.

Our partners organized the agenda around four pillars:

  • DNS ecosystem and market trends
  • Domain name usage best practices
  • DNS security
  • Entrepreneurship in the Internet

This approach was a success, with attendees lining up before each session to get seats, and asking well-informed questions in the discussions.

You can review the program on the LAC DNS Forum's permanent website (yes, great news!), prepared as a courtesy by NIC.mx. Also, take some time to watch our video recordings and download presentations from the YouTube channel.

Many thanks to our Board Members; ICANN’s Global Domains Division (GDD) and Security, Stability, and Resiliency (SSR) team; community members; and business leaders for helping to deliver a memorable LAC DNS Forum. We’d like to extend a special thank you to Monterrey Tec for the warm welcome and for the opportunity to share ideas for an innovative and secure DNS environment. We learned a lot with all of you and look for your participation in the 2018 LAC DNS Forum.

^