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Internet Identifier System Research and Security, Stability, and Resiliency

Office of the Chief Technology Officer supports improving the Security, Stability, and Resiliency of Internet’s system of unique identifiers; researches issues related to those identifiers; provides capacity building training for DNS, DNSSEC, and Security; participates in technical and security community groups (IETF, regional TLDs, AntiPhishing)


Internet Assigned Numbers Authority Functions

Part of ICANN Operational functions include the maintenance or key Global Registries (Protocol Parameters, Top level IP number Prefixes and Top level Domain name delegation) under the IANA functions, and the Time Zone Database which contains the code and data that represents local time around the globe


Information Systems, Corporate Security, IT and DNS Engineering

Office of the Chief Information Officer monitors and maintains ICANN systems and technical operations, corporate security, and Information Technology. The DNS Engineering Team administers ICANN's DNS network services and the global L-root constellation.


Global Domain Division Technical Services

The Global Domains Division supports gTLD Registries and Registrars under contract with ICANN. This includes contracting for Emergency Backend Registry Operator, Registry and Registrar Data Escrow, operating the CZDS, and Registry Services Evaluation Process. Also supports IDNs, ccTLD Fast Track Process, Root Zone Label Generation Ruleset...


  • ICANN Installs Root Server Cluster in Singapore
    I am pleased to update our community on the installation of an ICANN Managed Root Server (IMRS) cluster in Singapore. This new cluster will help to increase the root server capacity for the Asia Pacific region and bolster the resiliency of the entire Root Server System....

    16 Sep 2020 | By David Conrad, Chief Technology Officer

  • Introducing the Identifier Research, Operations, and Security Function
    In October 2018, ICANN President and CEO Göran Marby announced the decision to place the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) functions under my role as Chief Technology Officer (CTO). Prior to this, my function - the Office of the CTO (OCTO) - was minimally...

    10 Jun 2020 | By David Conrad, ICANN Chief Technology Officer

  • 2019

  • Meeting Our Commitments to Accountability and Transparency: An Information Transparency Initiative Update
    As you’re aware, ICANN has commitments to and requirements for accountability and transparency. Current and easy-to-find information in all six U.N. languages is a vital part of achieving those commitments. is one of the avenues where we demonstrate and meet...

    31 Oct 2019 | By David Conrad, ICANN Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and Sally Newell Cohen, ICANN Senior Vice President, Global Communications

  • Keeping You Informed: An Update on the Information Transparency Initiative
    It's been a few months since we last updated you about the Information Transparency Initiative (ITI). Behind the scenes, the team has been hard at work delivering on the project's primary goal of improving the findability of our content. Registry Agreement Search...

    04 Sep 2019 | By David Conrad, ICANN Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer (CTO), Sally Newell Cohen, ICANN Senior Vice President, Global Communications

  • 2018

  • The Information Transparency Initiative (ITI): Improving Announcement and Blog Findability
    As you know from previous blogs and Public Meeting sessions, ITI is well into its tenth month of work and much progress has been made in that time. As Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer (CIO) Ashwin Rangan wrote about in June 2018, we're rebuilding...

    11 Oct 2018 | By David Conrad, ICANN Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer (CTO)

  • The Information Transparency Initiative (ITI): Making Improvements by Building Strong Foundations
    Today, the ICANN org launched improvements to the existing Acronyms and Terms feature on These changes are a part of ITI's commitment to increase the findability of our public content. Some of the enhancements include: Multilingual search via acronym,...

    24 May 2018 | By David Conrad, ICANN Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer (CTO)

  • The Information Transparency Initiative (ITI) Feedback Site is Now Live
    I'm pleased to announce that today, we launched the ITI feedback site ( As I have written about in previous blogs and discussed at ICANN60 and ICANN61 sessions, this site is intended to provide you, the ICANN community, with the ability to share your...

    23 Apr 2018 | By David Conrad, Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and Senior Vice-President

  • The Information Transparency Initiative (ITI) and the Open Data Initiative (ODI): Similarities, Differences, and What These Projects Mean for You.
    You've heard and read about the Information Transparency Initiative (ITI) and the Open Data Initiative (ODI), but you may be unsure of the difference between the two projects. ITI and ODI share a similar goal – to make it easier for the ICANN community to access...

    05 Mar 2018 | By Duncan Burns, Senior VP, Global Communication, ICANN; and David Conrad, Senior VP and Chief Technology Officer, ICANN

  • An Information Transparency Initiative Update: The Content Audit and ICANN Taxonomy
    As you may recall from our September 2017 blog, the Information Transparency Initiative's (ITI) primary goals are: improving content findability in all six U.N. languages, creating content governance, and building new technical infrastructures to enforce...

    31 Jan 2018 | By Duncan Burns and David Conrad

  • 2017

  • Creating Content Governance and Rebuilding the Infrastructure of ICANN’s Public Sites
    It probably comes as no surprise to many of you who use that our content can be difficult to find. It's an issue we have grappled with for a long time that needs a permanent fix. On 23 September 2017, at the ICANN Board meeting in Montevideo, Uruguay, the...

    26 Sep 2017 | By Duncan Burns, Senior Vice President, Global Communications & Managing Director, Washington, D.C. Office; David Conrad, Senior Vice President & Chief Technology Officer

  • M3AAWG Appoints Dr. John Levine Liaison to ICANN
    The Messaging, Malware and Mobile Anti Abuse Working Group (M3AAWG) recently appointed Dr. John Levine Liaison to ICANN. The ICANN organization welcomes this appointment and thanks M3AAWG's Board of Directors for this decision. This appointment will allow the portion of...

    28 Apr 2017 | By David Conrad

  • 2016

  • KSK Rollover Operations Begin
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    Today, ICANN created a new root zone key signing key (KSK). This new cryptographic public/private key pair was made during the quarterly Root KSK Ceremony at our secure key management facility in Culpeper, Virginia. With this key generation, the initial operational phase...

    27 Oct 2016 | By David Conrad

  • DNSSEC: Rolling the Root Zone Key Signing Key
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    ICANN today posted plans to update or "roll" the Root Zone Key Signing Key (KSK), marking another significant step in our ongoing efforts aimed at improving the security of the Domain Name System (DNS). The KSK rollover plans were developed by the Root Zone Management...

    22 Jul 2016 | By David Conrad, ICANN Chief Technology Officer

  • Changing the Keys to the Domain Name System (DNS) Root Zone
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    Ensuring the Integrity of the top level of the DNS Through Security Best Practices In July 2010, ICANN, Verisign, and NTIA added a level of protection to the Internet's top DNS layer using a technology known as DNSSEC, which stands for Domain Name System Security...

    09 May 2016 | By David Conrad

  • Expectations of Service Level Expectations
    Introduction Recently, ICANN staff has been working to meet the community requirements related to establishing metrics for the performance of the "Post Transition IANA" as it processes root zone management requests. For those not following the development of the Service...

    07 Mar 2016 | By David Conrad

  • The Registration Operations Workshop: Join Us in Buenos Aires
    The next Registration Operations Workshop, the fourth of these events, will take place just before IETF-95 on Sunday, April 3, 2016, at the Hilton Hotel in Buenos Aires. The Registration Operations Workshop series is now being co-sponsored by Verisign and ICANN and...

    02 Mar 2016 | By David Conrad

  • 2015

  • New IANA Functions Resource Published
    ICANN is pleased to announce a new resource for the community: The IANA Functions: An Introduction to the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) Functions [PDF, 2.17 MB]. As an overview of how the IANA Functions are currently executed, the 20-page booklet includes an...

    20 Jun 2015 | By Elise Gerich, Vice President, IANA & Technical Operations; David Conrad, Chief Technology Officer

  • 2008

  • Ghosts of Root Servers Past
    As noticed by some in the Internet network operations community, at the beginning of May an odd event occurred as ICANN ended DNS service on the IP address formerly associated with L.ROOT-SERVERS.NET (“L-root”). Specifically, as ICANN turned off the DNS service at the...

    19 May 2008 | By David Conrad

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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."