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DNSSEC Becomes a Reality Today at ICANN Brussels

Ram Mohan

ISOC, PIR and Afilias team at the signing of isoc.org this morning at ICANN 38: Brussels.
Back row (l to r): Roland LaPlante & Dr. Jim Galvin from Afilias. Front row (l to r): Alexa Raad, PIR CEO, Leslie Daigle, ISOC CITO, and Lynn St.Amour, ISOC CEO.
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Attendees at the public ICANN meeting in Brussels today heard from over two dozen companies that have implemented or are planning to support DNSSEC, the next-generation standard protocol for secured domain names. It is clearer than ever before that DNSSEC is becoming a reality.

The Public Interest Registry announced that as of this morning the .ORG top-level domain, for which Afilias provides the technical infrastructure, has finalized its deployment of DNSSEC. Registrants of .ORG domains will now be able to generate keys and sign their zones via participating registrars. The Internet Society's ISOC.org address became the first to go live in production, signing their name with their sponsoring registrar NamesBeyond. NamesBeyond also became the first registrar to offer complete DNSSEC deployment in production and presented an easy-to-use user interface design.

In her comments, Lynn St. Amour, the President and CEO of the Internet Society said that she was pleased to be the first organization in the .ORG top level domain to deploy DNSSEC. She said that implementing DNSSEC for the .ORG top-level domain was an important step in ensuring that the Internet serves as a trusted channel for communication and collaboration.

Indeed, the deployment of DNSSEC is one of the most important developments in .ORG's 25-year history and their visionary efforts have pushed an entire industry towards adoption.

Go Daddy publicized its commitment to DNSSEC at the ICANN meeting, telling a crowded meeting hall that it will offer a managed DNSSEC service to its customers later this year. An additional 11 registrars have completed operational testing to offer DNSSEC-signed .ORG domains to their customers.

With ICANN due to sign the DNS root next month, the chain of trust on the Internet is almost complete, all the way from the root to the ISP level. Comcast, which spent over two years testing its own DNSSEC validating resolvers prior to deploying earlier this year, announced today that it will also sign some 650 of its own .ORG domains. Jason Livingood from Comcast encouraged other ISPs to begin their own DNSSEC trials and to rollout DNSSEC in their production resolvers.

While many at the ICANN meeting also heard about the technical challenges of implementing DNSSEC at the registrar and registry levels, and the competitive advantages that can come from being an early adopter, the general consensus emerged that DNSSEC is now something which every player in the domain name industry needs to address.

Paul Vixie, the Chairman of Internet Systems Consortium, which develops BIND software told the workshop that the community was near the tipping point with the root, .ORG, .COM and .NET all being signed or going to sign soon.

By Ram Mohan, Executive Vice President & CTO, Afilias. Mr. Mohan brings over 20 years of technology leadership experience to Afilias and the industry.

Related topics: DNS, DNS Security, Domain Names, Registry Services, ICANN, Security, Top-Level Domains

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