Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers

ICANN Welcomes Positive Report from U.S. General Accounting Office

7 July 2000

(July 7, 2000) The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) welcomed today's release of a report by the United States General Accounting Office that confirms the legality and propriety of ICANN's formation and its relationship with the U.S. Department of Commerce.

"After an exhaustive study and careful legal analysis, the GAO has concluded that ICANN's project partnership with the U.S. government rests on a strong and secure legal foundation," said ICANN President and CEO Mike Roberts. "We welcome its findings, which are consistent with the actions ICANN has taken over the past year and a half."

"It's nice to see some independent, authoritative validation of ICANN's sound legal footing," said Esther Dyson, chairman of ICANN's board of directors. "The challenge for all those involved in the ICANN process is to build on that foundation. ICANN is a platform for the Net's diverse communities fo work together to develop policies for themselves in a structure that is stable, open, transparent, and consensus-based."

The General Accounting Office is the investigative arm of the U.S. Congress.

Also today, ICANN released its second status report to the U.S. Department of Commerce, available on the ICANN website at
<>. The status report outlines ICANN's progress toward meeting the goals defined in the joint memorandum of understanding between the Department of Commerce and ICANN, and spells out the next steps to complete the transition to private-sector technical management of the Internet's naming and numbering systems.


The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is a technical coordination body for the Internet. Created in October 1998 by a broad coalition of the Internet's business, technical, academic, and user communities, ICANN is assuming responsibility for a set of technical functions previously performed under U.S. government contract by IANA and other groups.

Specifically, ICANN coordinates the assignment of the following identifiers that must be globally unique for the Internet to function:

  • Internet domain names
  • IP address numbers
  • protocol parameter and port numbers

In addition, ICANN coordinates the stable operation of the Internet's root server system.

As a non-profit, private-sector corporation, ICANN is dedicated to preserving the operational stability of the Internet; to promoting competition; to achieving broad representation of global Internet communities; and to developing policy through private-sector, bottom-up, consensus-based means. ICANN welcomes the participation of any interested Internet user, business, or organization. See

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