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ICANN CTO Tours Asia To Engage the Technical Community and Regional Stakeholders

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SINGAPORE … Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) Chief Technology Officer (CTO) David Conrad kicks off a four-city Asia tour to engage regional stakeholders and technical community today.

Conrad is visiting China, India, Japan and Singapore over two weeks. He will be meeting regional stakeholders to share information about ICANN's technical role in the domain name ecosystem, and explore potential partnership opportunities in the technical field. He will also visit major technology firms and research institutions to better understand key regional technological developments.

"The mission of my office is to constantly improve knowledge and technical operation of the unique identifiers of the domain name system that ICANN helps to coordinate. This tour is very much in support of that fact-finding and knowledge sharing mission," said David Conrad, ICANN CTO.

"I used to live in Asia and appreciate the creativity and innovation that emerges from this region. I'm hoping to find some 'hidden gems' and opportunities to collaborate in areas such as further improving the security, stability and resiliency of the Internet's global identifier systems," he continued.

During the visit, Conrad will meet with regional ICANN community representatives including government, contracted parties, technical community and academia to discuss topics such as:

  • Domain Name System (DNS) security – the DNS translates names into numbers called Internet Protocol (IP) addresses. ICANN coordinates this addressing system to ensure that all the addresses are unique and we can have one global Internet. DNS security looks at measures to protect the DNS e.g. safeguarding your server.
  • DNS Security Extensions (DNSSEC) – this is a suite of extensions that add security to the DNS protocol by enabling DNS responses to be validated. This technology was developed to protect against vulnerabilities in the DNS that allow an attacker to hijack any step of the DNS lookup process and take over control of a session. Full deployment of DNSSEC will ensure that the end user is connecting to the actual website or service corresponding to a particular domain name.
  • Key Signing Key (KSK) Rollover – ICANN is changing of the "top" pair of cryptographic keys used in DNSSEC protocol to protect the DNS. The KSK rollover will take place on 11 October 2017. All network operators who have enabled DNSSEC validation must update their systems to ensure that services are not interrupted on 11 October.
  • Public Technical Identifiers (PTI) – an affiliate of ICANN, PTI is responsible for the operational aspects of coordinating the Internet's unique identifiers and performs the IANA functions for domain names, number resources and protocol parameters.

"I'm very happy that David is here to engage with the Asia stakeholders. We hope that through this trip, we can increase the region's contribution and participation to ICANN, especially from the technical perspective," said Jia-Rong Low, Vice President and Managing Director, ICANN Asia Pacific.

Office of the CTO (OCTO)

The OCTO supports improving the security, stability and resiliency of the Internet's system of unique identifiers. The team researches issues relating to these identifiers and provides capacity building training for DNS, DNSSEC and Security. OCTO also participates in various international technical and security community groups.

For more information about OCTO, please visit here.
For more information about technology@ICANN, please visit here.
For more information about DNSSEC, please visit here.
For more information about the pending Key Roll, please visit here.
For more information about PTI, please visit here.


Media Contacts

Liana Teo
Head of Communications, APAC
Tel: +65 9765 5500

Fiona Aw
Global Communications Coordinator
Tel: +65 9113 6621


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 into your computer or other device – a name or a number. 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 and a community with participants from all over the world.

For more information, please visit:

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."