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SSAC2 Review: Assessment Report Published for Community Input

Join the Public Meeting at ICANN62 and Upcoming Webinar

LOS ANGELES – 21 June 2018 – Analysis Group, the independent examiner performing the second review of ICANN's Security and Stability Advisory Committee (SSAC), has published its assessment report.

Read the report [PDF, 761 KB].

Your comments on the report are encouraged and can be sent to until 23:59 UTC on 20 July 2018.

Analysis Group will present the assessment report and host a community discussion at ICANN62 in Panama City on Wednesday, 27 June at 14:15 – 15:15 UTC (9:15 – 10:15 EST). The community is invited to attend the presentation and contribute to the feedback process. More details, including remote attendance information, can be found here.


In addition to the session at ICANN62, Analysis Group will host a webinar on Thursday, 12 July at 20:00 UTC, during which participants will have the opportunity to provide initial feedback and ask questions. To request dial-in information for the webinar, please send an email to

About the Assessment Report

The goal of the assessment report is to achieve maximum agreement between the wider ICANN community and the independent examiner as to which areas of the SSAC work well and which may benefit from improvements. No recommendations are included in the assessment report. Recommendations will be included in the final report, expected to be published in November 2018.

Read the executive summary [PDF, 85 KB]. (Note: The executive summary will be translated into Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian and Spanish in due course. Translated versions of the executive summary will be posted here as soon as they are available.)

Background to the SSAC2 Review

A periodic review of the SSAC is mandated by ICANN Bylaws Section 4.4. The purpose of the review is to determine whether the SSAC has a continuing purpose in the ICANN structure and, if so, whether any change in structure or operations is desirable to improve its effectiveness. The review will also determine if the SSAC is accountable to its constituencies, stakeholder groups, organizations, and other stakeholders. Analysis Group began its work on the review in February 2018.

As with all Organizational Reviews, the SSAC2 Review is following a two-phased approach, in which the independent examiner first completes its assessment and then makes recommendations to address the findings noted during the assessment. This approach contributes to more useful and relevant recommendations by providing an opportunity for the community and the independent examiner to discuss what works and what needs improvement before the independent examiner develops recommendations to address the observed situations. Learn more about the SSAC2 Review.


ICANN's mission is to help ensure a stable, secure and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you need to type an address – a name or a number – into your computer or other device. That address must be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation with a community of participants from all over the world.

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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."