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NTIA Report Update

In a report issued earlier this month, the U.S. National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) found that the “proposal developed by the global Internet multistakeholder community meets the criteria NTIA outlined in March 2014 when it stated its intent to transition the U.S. Government’s stewardship role for the Internet domain name system (DNS) technical functions, known as the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) functions.”

One of many elements of NTIA’s review process was to evaluate the proposal against the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations (COSO) of the Treadway Commission Internal Control Framework Assessment. The use of the COSO framework was in alignment with the U.S. Government Accountability Office recommendation of how NTIA could enhance its review.

NTIA’s COSO Assessment was favorable, with no items flagged as red. Of the 70 areas assessed only eleven received a yellow rating relating to four areas:

  • PTI governance (5 items)
  • PTI Audit Committee (1 item)
  • ICANN’s new investigatory process (2 items)
  • PTI Operations (3 items)

Although NTIA does not require that any of the recommendations flagged as yellow be resolved as a pre-condition for the completion of the transition, we are confident that there is a clear path forward to address every item. We reviewed each of the items against NTIA’s recommended action, and implementation notes have been developed where further work is needed. NTIA’s recommendations and ICANN’s plans to address them can be found here

Of the eleven items that were rated yellow:

  • Two have already been addressed and do not require any further action
  • Six are already accounted for in the transition work plan and we anticipate completion by the time of transition
  • Three are expected to be completed post transition either as part of scheduled implementation work, or as part of normal operational planning

We appreciate NTIA’s thorough review of the community-developed proposal. We will work with the community and NTIA to ensure that the plans to address these items will meet the expectations of NTIA and the ICANN community.


    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."