The Coalition for Digital Africa and the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) have announced that Cairo, Egypt, will be the second location for the deployment of the ICANN Managed Root Server (IMRS) installation in Africa. This is part of a Coalition initiative launched in 2022, which is slated to be deployed in September.
The first IMRS deployment was made operational in Nairobi, Kenya in November 2022. As a result, most Africa-based Internet DNS root queries are now resolved in Africa. The IMRS in Nairobi, Kenya handles 40 percent of all IMRS DNS root queries for the continent. Prior to the installation, 35 to 40 percent of the DNS query traffic was traveling outside of Africa for resolution.
The two IMRS installations increase the resiliency of the global Root Server System for Internet users across the continent. IMRS installations add root server capacity to support an expected exponential increase in Internet adoption across Africa. The IMRS installations assist in keeping Africa-sourced root Domain Name System (DNS) queries answered within the region and reduce dependence on networks and servers in other parts of the world. This resiliency improves the Internet experience for users across Africa.
The root servers also boost national and regional Internet resiliency by helping root server traffic stay local. Egypt's National Telecommunications Regulatory Authority is collaborating with ICANN in the installation of the IMRS in Cairo, Egypt.
The IMRS installations will reduce the impact of potential cyberattacks on Africa, should the global Root Server System be attacked. Distributed denial-of-service (DDOS) cyberattacks work by overwhelming servers with a flood of queries. With two separate IMRS deployment locations in Africa, and higher bandwidth and data processing capacity, the risk of the Internet being impacted because of a DDOS cyberattack is significantly reduced.
Conceived by ICANN, the Coalition for Digital Africa is an alliance of like-minded organizations committed to building a robust and secure Internet infrastructure to bring more Africans online. More information is available at www.coalitionfordigitalafrica.africa.