ICANN has allocated $1 million to help protect internet access in war-torn Ukraine.
Its board of directors at the weekend voted to set aside the “initial sum” of money “to provide financial assistance to support access to Internet infrastructure in emergency situations.”
There’s an expectation that the cash will be spent “on support for maintaining Internet access for users within Ukraine”, where the Russian invasion is described as “tragic and profoundly troubling”, over the next few months, the board said.
It’s not clear yet exactly how the money will be spent, though something related to the keeping the DNS up and running would seem to be the most probable. The resolution calls for the CEO to develop a process to figure it out.
Ukraine’s ccTLD manager, Hostmaster, moved its servers into other European countries shortly after the invasion, and signed up to Cloudlflare’s DDoS protection service. It’s not clear whether it had to spend money on these moves.
ICANN’s million will come from its regular operating budget, not the stash it has set aside from its new gTLD auctions. The auction money will probably be spent on similar things eventually, but the process for allocating that is still being worked out in a committee.
ICANN also said this week that it is, as I and others suggested, exercising section 220.127.116.11 of its Registrar Accreditation Agreement to declare the invasion an “extenuating circumstance”, meaning Ukrainians who are unable to renew their domain name registrations before they expire may not lose them.
Registrars now have the option to keep these domains registered after their usual expiration date and ICANN will not send its Compliance enforcers after them.
“We encourage registrars and registries to support this action and take these circumstances into consideration when reviewing impacted registrants’ renewal delinquencies in affected regions,” ICANN said.
It’s the first time ICANN has exercised this power in connection with a human-made disaster. It previously invoked 18.104.22.168 in response to Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico and worldwide in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The post ICANN offers $1 million to Ukraine projects, supports Ukrainian registrants first appeared on Domain Incite.
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