A proposed overhaul of the ‘.nz’ domain system

Last month, InternetNZ, which administers the .nz domain name system, released an Options Report, Re-imagining the future of .nz, which has been put together by an independent policy advisory panel. It has subsequently sought public submissions on the Report, which follows a year-long review of the policies that govern the .nz domain name system.

The domain name system is a key component of the Internet.  It helps people to access the Internet resources they want.  The .nz domain is the country code top level domain assigned to New Zealand.  It represents New Zealand on the Internet.

The Report is in two parts.  In the first part, it is proposed that the seven guiding principles that currently govern the administration of .nz either be replaced, modified, or changed into operating principles.  As a result, there are five guiding principles proposed.  These new guiding principles emphasise security, trust, accessibility, innovation and participation by Māori.

The second part of the Report looks at issues related to .nz, such as privacy, security and harmful use of the Internet.  Recommendations include incentivising or mandating security practices, and creating security policies that are technology neutral.  It also provides a roadmap for how the panel considers InternetNZ should be collaborating with tangata whenua to achieve positive outcomes.

The Report also notes that the current policies may not comply with the new Privacy Act.  The panel recommends that steps be taken such as only taking essential information from registrants, and ensuring they are aware of how their information can be accessed.

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