August 19, 2015
ICANN has been given another year of oversight of the Internet's Domain Name System (DNS) - and possibly longer if needed.
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) has been responsible for managing and coordinating the Domain Name System (DNS) for a long time - that was meant to end next month when its current contract expired.
However, the task of privatising the DNS has proved to be a massive one and it may take until September 2016 for the necessary processes to have been completed.
US Congress was informed last week the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) would extend its IANA (Internet Assigned Numbers Authority) contract with ICANN for one year to September 30, 2016.
"Beyond 2016, we have options to extend the contract for up to three additional years if needed," said Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information (Commerce) and NTIA Administrator, Lawrence E. Strickling.
quot;This one-year extension will provide the community with the time it needs to finish its work."
NTIA has also asked Verisign and ICANN to prepare and submit proposal outlining the best way to remove NTIA’s administrative role associated with root zone management; something the two were not originally tasked with.
"These developments will help ensure that the IANA transition will be done in a manner that preserves the security and stability of the DNS," said Mr. Strickling.
The US having so much control over DNS has been a point of concern for some for quite a while. However, in 2014 the Obama administration announced a transfer of ICANN's DNS power to a group of international stakeholders; which itself has caused concern that this could lead the way to influence by what may be considered undesirable parties.
The Domain Name System is located on millions of servers around the world, but behaves like a single database - learn more about DNS.
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