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Protection of IGO and INGO Identifiers in All gTLDs

Implementation Project Status

Updated 4 October 2018

Protection of IGO/INGO Identifiers in All gTLDs Implementation Project Status: Implement (INGO Claims System); Support and Review (Reserved Names)
  • Final policy published on 16 January 2018
  • An Implementation Review Team (IRT) comprised of community members and led by GDD met regularly during the course of the implementation to discuss and agree on timelines and steps for implementation


  • Board Approval: April 2014
  • Public Comment: July 2017
  • Announcement of Implementation: January 2018
  • Effective Dates: August 2018 for Reserved Names and 12-months from the release of the INGO claims system specification for INGOs


Issues emerged during the development of the New gTLD Program regarding whether certain international (non-) governmental organizations (IGOs/INGOs) such as the Red Cross/Red Crescent Movement (RCRC) and International Olympic Committee (IOC) should receive special protection for their names in top- and second-level domains in new gTLDs. To explore the issue in detail, the ICANN Board requested policy advice from the GNSO Council and Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC) on whether special protections should be afforded to the RCRC, IOC and/or IGOs in general.

In October 2012, the GNSO formally initiated a Policy Development Process (PDP) to make recommendations on these issues. The Board adopted the recommendations of the PDP Working Group’s Final Report on 30 April 2014. Their Resolution included a request for additional time to consider Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC) advice on IGO/INGO issues.


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."