Business fears government internet takeover


Business fears government internet takeover

Cliff Saran
Plans by government representatives to take control of technical co-ordination of the internet have been condemned by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC).

On Tuesday 15 July government representatives at the United Nations World Summit on the Information Society will debate a draft text calling for a new inter-government body set up to run the internet.

Maria Farrell, e-business, IT and telecoms commission at the ICC, said, "Inter-government control would be a disaster because technical co-ordination of the internet needs to be flexible and responsive to all stakeholders."

Farrell said there was also a risk that an inter-governmental organisation could get involved in legal and political wrangling.

Addressing a meeting of e-business users and internet service providers this week, the head of the ICC e-business, IT and telecoms commission, Talal Abu-Ghazaleh, said, "Without all stakeholders' full and equal involvement in the technical co-ordination of the internet, there is a real risk the internet will degrade and fail to reach its full potential as a global communications and business medium."

Management of the internet is the responsibility of Icann, a private organisation. It manages internet domain names and the route domain name servers, which provide every domain server on the internet with the IP address for a website. Without the management and development of this core service, users would be unable to connect to the internet.

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