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Identifier Technology Health Indicators (ITHI)

New: ITHI Workshop, Madrid, 12 May, 10am-12pm

During the ITHI workshop we will look at the 2 subject areas of "registration accuracy" and "domain name abuse" as presented in the ICANN58 ITHI meeting in Copenhagen. We will present some preliminary methodologies that illustrate ways of measuring these metrics and show some sample data collected using those methodologies.

Materials from this event is available here.

ITHI session, ICANN57, Hyderabad: "Defining Health"

Following the workshop in September at ICANN office in Washington DC and the joint workshop with M3AAWG in Paris in October, ICANN is organizing an ITHI session at ICANN57 in Hyderabad. The session is scheduled Monday, November 7th, at 5pm in room G.03/04

Here are the slides that will be presented, proposing a definition of health [PDF, 2.21 MB].

New: ITHI Workshop, Washington D.C., September 7th

ICANN is organizing an ITHI technical workshop on September 7th, 2-5pm, at the ICANN office in Washington, DC. The focus will be technical metrics related to DNS operations.

Presentation topics for the workshop will include:

  • tracking the number of abuse per registry/registrar
  • comparing the cost of DNS based attacks vs the cost of defending against such attacks

More topics will be added later.

Space will be limited, if you'd like to participate, please RSVP to and propose a topic you would like to present. Also, please note, due to the technical nature of the workshop and anticipated white board sessions, there will be no provision for remote participation.

A report on the workshop will be presented at the ICANN 57 meeting.

ITHI Kick-off in Marrakech

During an open session at ICANN55 in Marrakech, ICANN unveiled a new initiative called Identifier Technology Health Indicators, or ITHI. This initiative is driven by Alain Durand, from ICANN's Office of the Chief Technology Officer (OCTO), under the leadership of ICANN’s CTO, David Conrad.

The scope of this ITHI initiative is all the Internet unique identifiers that ICANN helps coordinate, as outlined in the framework of the ICANN 2016-2020 Strategic Plan, Section 2.1 to “foster and coordinate a healthy, secure, stable, and resilient identifier ecosystem.”

The goal of ITHI is to develop metrics to measure the health of the Internet's unique identifier system that ICANN helps coordinate. As soon as those metrics will be defined, ICANN will measure and track them over a substantive period of time to see the evolution of the “State of the Identifier Technology”.

The ITHI initiative will be broken into two major phases:

  1. In Phase 1, ICANN will engage with the various operational communities (Domain Names, Numbering Resources and Protocol Parameters) to define an initial set of metrics related to identifier technologies health indicators. This phase is expected to be short-term, lasting roughly one year. Following SSAC 077 recommendation, this work will begin by working in collaboration with each operational community to take an in-depth look at the strategic risk they are facing related to identifier technologies.
  2. In Phase 2, ICANN will further refine those metrics with the various operational communities and publish regular report on the measurements associated with those metrics. This phase is expected to be a long-term, ongoing project.

ICANN has set-up a mailing list to host discussions about this initiative.

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ICANN55 Kick-Off Slides

View the presentation [PDF, 776 KB]

Domain Name System
Internationalized Domain Name ,IDN,"IDNs are domain names that include characters used in the local representation of languages that are not written with the twenty-six letters of the basic Latin alphabet ""a-z"". An IDN can contain Latin letters with diacritical marks, as required by many European languages, or may consist of characters from non-Latin scripts such as Arabic or Chinese. Many languages also use other types of digits than the European ""0-9"". The basic Latin alphabet together with the European-Arabic digits are, for the purpose of domain names, termed ""ASCII characters"" (ASCII = American Standard Code for Information Interchange). These are also included in the broader range of ""Unicode characters"" that provides the basis for IDNs. The ""hostname rule"" requires that all domain names of the type under consideration here are stored in the DNS using only the ASCII characters listed above, with the one further addition of the hyphen ""-"". The Unicode form of an IDN therefore requires special encoding before it is entered into the DNS. The following terminology is used when distinguishing between these forms: A domain name consists of a series of ""labels"" (separated by ""dots""). The ASCII form of an IDN label is termed an ""A-label"". All operations defined in the DNS protocol use A-labels exclusively. The Unicode form, which a user expects to be displayed, is termed a ""U-label"". The difference may be illustrated with the Hindi word for ""test"" — परीका — appearing here as a U-label would (in the Devanagari script). A special form of ""ASCII compatible encoding"" (abbreviated ACE) is applied to this to produce the corresponding A-label: xn--11b5bs1di. A domain name that only includes ASCII letters, digits, and hyphens is termed an ""LDH label"". Although the definitions of A-labels and LDH-labels overlap, a name consisting exclusively of LDH labels, such as"""" is not an IDN."