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ICANN Board Approves Historic F-Root Agreement | First formalization of mutual responsibilities between ISC, F-root server operator, and ICANN

23 January 2008

MARINA DEL REY, Calif.: The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers has formally approved the Mutual Responsibilities Agreement with the Internet Systems Consortium (ISC), the operators of F-Root.

"The security and stability of the domain name system are at the heart of ICANN’s core mission, and the formal approval of this agreement is a key component in meeting that mission," said Dr Paul Twomey, ICANN’s President and CEO. "One of ICANN’s responsibilities under the Joint Project Agreement with the U.S. Government is to work to formalize relationships with root server operators, so this is a real milestone."

"I’m pleased that ISC could take this first step with ICANN to formalize mutual expectations," said Paul Vixie, ISC’s President. "By memorializing and publishing the details of our long-standing commitment to ensure that the F-root nameserver is available 24x7 to the entire Internet community, we hope for a wider understanding of the key operational and stability issues of most concern to the root operator community and the Internet community as a whole."

ICANN and ISC announced they had reached this agreement at the start of January 2008. That announcement is available here [http://icann.org/announcements/announcement-04jan08.htm] and a copy of the MRA is available here: http://icann.org/froot/ICANN-ISC-MRA-26dec07.pdf [PDF, 21K].

Effective root server operations are an essential component in providing a stable and secure, globally interoperable Internet. ISC is one of 12 global root server operators that provide a key element of the underlying domain name system infrastructure of the Internet. Essentially, root servers provide an authoritative directory ensuring Internet services that are accessed with names, for example the URL www.icann.org or email to info@isc.org, are translated from human readable names into network addresses that a computer can find. The root server system overall answers well over 100,000 queries per second, providing the first step in determining the requested network address.

About ISC:

Internet Systems Consortium (ISC) is a non-profit 501(c)(3), public benefit corporation with a long history of developing and maintaining the production quality BIND and DHCP Open Source software. ISC has increased its focus to include enhancing the stability of the global DNS directly through reliable F-root name server operations and ongoing operation of a DNS crisis coordination center, ISCs OARC for DNS. ISC is also engaged in further protocol development efforts, particularly in the areas of DNS evolution and facilitating the transition to IPv6. ISC is supported by the donations of generous sponsors, program membership fees and specific fees for services. For program or donation information, please visit our website at http://www.isc.org.

Media Contact: Laura Hendriksen, 650-423-1309, laura_hendriksen@isc.org

Technical Contact : Joao Damas, joao_damas@isc.org

 About ICANN:

ICANN is responsible for the global coordination of the Internet's system of unique identifiers like domain names (like .org, .museum and country codes like .uk) and the addresses used in a variety of Internet protocols that help computers reach each other over the Internet. Careful management of these resources is vital to the Internet's operation, so ICANN's global stakeholders meet regularly to develop policies that ensure the Internet's ongoing security and stability. ICANN is an internationally organized, public benefit non-profit company. For more information please visit: www.icann.org .

Media Contacts:

Jason Keenan
Media Adviser, ICANN
Ph: +1 310 382 4004
E: jason.keenan@icann.org

International: Andrew Robertson
Edelman (London)
Ph: +44 7921 588 770
E: andrew.robertson@edelman.com