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Request for Proposal: EBERO Services

LOS ANGELES – 17 October 2018 – Today, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) announced it is seeking one or more partners to provide Emergency Back-End Registry Operator (EBERO) services. The ICANN organization's EBERO program is intended to ensure protection of registrants in the event of a registry failure. Ensuring the successful transfer of a failing generic top-level (TLD) aligns with the ICANN org's objective to support a healthy, stable, and resilient unique identifier ecosystem and is consistent with its mission and bylaws.

There are currently three EBERO service providers who have partnered with the ICANN org to provide 24/7 on-call, emergency services in the event of a gTLD registry operator failure.

Since the original Request for Information (RFI) in 2011, the industry has significantly matured. The ICANN org seeks to align the requirements of an EBERO service provider with its understanding of the market for emergency back-end registry support services. Additionally, as part of its procurement policy to periodically review vendor contracts, the ICANN org is conducting an open RFP. This means that in addition to prospective new providers, the existing EBERO service providers will also be required to submit proposals in order to be eligible to continue as an EBERO service provider.

The primary objective of this RFP is to identify one or more providers suitable to support the ICANN org's ability to respond to and coordinate the emergency recovery of a gTLD registry. The ICANN org intends to identify one or more providers in regions where the largest number of New gTLD Program registries are currently based —Asia Pacific, European, and North American regions. Additional considerations include sharing a mutual responsibility to Internet users in their desire to ensuring the stability of the Internet.

For a complete overview and timeline for the RFP, please click here [PDF, 97 KB].

Indications of interest must be emailed to: EBEROServices-rfp@icann.org by 23:59 UTC on 05 November 2018. Complete proposals must be electronically submitted by 16:00 UTC on 3 December 2018 using the ICANN org sourcing (RFP) tool, access to which will be granted after receipt of an indication of interest to the email address above.

About ICANN

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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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""icann.org"" is not an IDN."