Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA)

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Domain Names Registration Statistics for July, August and September 2016

Domain Name Registrations and Renewals at the Registry have steadily increased on month per month basis and year per year basis. The increase can of course be attributed to the hard work of the NiRA Accredited Registrars. The domain names registered and renewed in September 2016 (4,915) is more than twice the registration in September 2014 (2370) and far more than the registration in September 2015.

 

Successful IANA Transition, Implications for Nigeria’s ICT Development

Without much fanfare, the United States Government stood down from providing oversight to the management of Internet resources (also called IANA functions), on 1st October 2016.

Hitherto, the oversight was done via a contract between the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the body responsible for the coordination and management of Internet Resources, and the US Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA).

The road to the symbolic event started in 2014, when ICANN was asked to convene a global multi-stakeholder community that will provide the needed oversight when the NTIA contract expires. You can read more about this transition in the News section of this Newsletter.

That the global Internet community was able to pull this off, is testimony to the globalization of the Internet and the level of inclusiveness that ICANN has been able to achieve. Your Association, NIRA is one of the many global institutions participating in the Internet Governance ecosystem. We salute all the visionaries and those who worked tirelessly in the various committees and institutions to achieve this symbolic milestone. Congratulations to all.

As a true Multi-stakeholder entity in Nigeria, NIRA’s setup, composition and governance is proof that the Multistakeholder model works, and will continue to assure a global, inclusive, pervasive, scalable and reliable Internet.

Locally, we must now turn to confront the various impediments working against the average Nigerian getting online and being productive. The Internet is no longer a luxury, rather a tool for basic existence, so we must be proactive.

Government services must be readily available and accessible to all, at no cost. We should start immediately, with essential services. For example, Nigerians should not pay for Internet Access to file their Tax returns online, register births and deaths, apply for a Government ID online or give critical and important Information to the Police. We must look at how to educate our teeming youths using the Internet as a supplementary classroom, because they are the bedrock of a productive economy.

People must find content in their own languages. NIRA is working with other Institutions such as the Office of National Content (ONC), Nigeria Internet Group (NIG) and the Internet Exchange Point of Nigeria (IXPN) in re-energizing the Local Internet Content Forum (LICF) to strategize on how to keep Nigeria’s content local, and conserve scarce Foreign Exchange resources as the nation adjusts to the current realities.

We should ensure that the physically challenged are not left behind. We must address the scourge of cybercrime, especially the advance fee fraud that has tainted Nigeria’s image Internationally. We all, must continue to assist the Government in developing, promoting and enforcing policies that will make many Nigerians anchor the emerging knowledge economy. That is when we can truly enjoy the dividends of the symbolic but significant IANA transition.

Come along, Lets do it!

 

Your President,

Rev’d Sunday Folayan

INTERNET CENSORSHIP

The world’s technological advancement especially in the aspect of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) has been so rapid and innovative.  Internet accessibility has been integrated into every gadget, making it easy and fast for everybody to access the Internet, contributing and/or consuming available information online. Over the years the Internet has proven to be the best and largest computer network where files/information of any kind can be easily shared and accessed with no restrictions. It has been noted that some people have taken advantage of this privilege in the negative form/direction/manner. These negative acts have forced the introduction of censorship on the Internet.

Internet censorship is the monitoring or control of files, webpages, contents that can be accessed, published, or viewed from/on the Internet. Censorship can be done by the Government, Private Organizations acting on Governmental policies or their own policies or by individuals out of fear of legal or social consequences that might arise from the misuse of the Internet.

Internet censorship can be in various forms. For example, a country might see some social media websites/platforms as a national threat thereby restricting citizens’ access to such sites/platforms. There are also Child Online Protection Act, Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, etc. These are all geared towards online protection of children and the youths.

The Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA), the manager of the Nigerian Internet resource, .ng, has policies, http://www.nira.org.ng/legal/policy, guiding domain name registrations. There are guidelines against registration of domain names, which can be termed offensive to the Nigerian community and the Global community.

In conclusion, whilst the Internet has helped many organizations and individuals attain global recognition, the wrong use of the Internet can also cause harm or infringe on the rights of other individuals/organisations/countries. Internet users are advised to be careful with the kind of content they upload and view because everything that goes over the Internet can be regarded as public content for public consumption and can be accessed by anybody.

The .ng Crusade needs you and Welcome Dr. Pantami

In recent times, Internet penetration has been on the increase with more Businesses getting online, people connecting more with others and the world gradually becoming socially active. Many people are beginning to appreciate the essence of the .ng brand. Many have come to realize that their products and services are best brought to the attention of their primary target audience using the .ng medium. It gives one joy that many more Companies are boldly branding their premises and cars with .ng domain names.

Brand awareness, publicity and protection are some of the benefits of being on .ng. I make bold to say that this is now the time to adopt .ng for your online presence if you have not made the move or the switch as appropriate.

The .ng string is our national resource, a national identity which we must be proud to have, use and advertise. We should support the brand and promote it. By using it, we are conserving our scarce foreign exchange, promoting employment and creating wealth. We are equally assisting Nigeria to find its way out of the current economic recession.

The process to register a .ng domain name or switch to a .ng domain name is easy. It starts by contacting an accredited Registrar of NIRA. The list is at http://www.nira.org.ng/accredited-registrars/all.

Please join us in the drive to bring .ng to the consciousness of Nigerians. There is a growing demand for the .ng brand. Let us key into this, enlighten the public more on the advantages of brandishing our national online identity, as well as promoting and marketing our businesses online.

Let me seize this opportunity to Congratulate and welcome the newly appointed Director-General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami. We wish him God’s guidance and a successful and resourceful tenure. I congratulate the Immediate past Acting DG, Dr. Vincent Olatunji for holding fort successfully, and we wish him the best in his future assignments.

 

Your President,

 

Rev’d Sunday Folayan

.ng OUR UNIQUE NIGERIAN IDENTITY

By Joshua James, a Student of Department of Mathematical Science & IT, B.Sc Computer Science & IT

Federal University, Dutsinma, Katsina State, Nigeria

Introduction

Considering the growth of the Internet in Nigeria and the world in general, many organizations desire to develop their online presence. Therefore, they create and implement websites in pursuit of this. In a recent trip to the Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA), the need for corporate organizations to implement and incorporate the use of the dot NG as part of their domain name was highlighted. In my little research for this article I found out that even Chinese whose names end with .ng are coming to NiRA for a .Ng domain name.

What is a domain name?

domain name is an identification string that defines a realm of administrative autonomy, authority or control within the Internet. Domain names are formed by the rules and procedures of the Domain Name System (DNS). Any name registered in the DNS is a domain name. Domain name can also be thought of as a location where certain information or activities can be found. In general, a domain name represents an Internet Protocol (IP) resource, such as a personal computer used to access the Internet, a server computer hosting a website, or the website itself or any other service communicated via the Internet.

Domain names are organized in subordinate levels (sub domains) of the DNS root domain, which is nameless. The first-level set of domain names are the top-level domains (TLDs), including the generic Top Level Domains (gTLDs), such as the prominent domains .com, .info, .net, .edu, and .org, and the country code Top Level Domains (ccTLDs) of which our .ng falls into.

The .ng ccTLD            

 ng is the acronym assigned to Nigeria by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). As such we can say that .ng is the Flag of Nigeria & its unique identity on the cyberspace. Furthermore, the birth of NiRA by NITDA has helped to put the Nigerian “FLAG” on the Internet. Every true Nigerian business in the Government sector or in private sector is expected to switch their domain names to the .ng and fly the flag of Nigeria in cyberspace.

The benefits

The benefits are many and include:

  • Security: increases the confidence of people doing business with you as a Nigerian organization.
  • Reduction of capital flight.
  • Opportunity to brand online your products, services, brand, etc
  • Revenue generation.
  • Promoting local content and creating employment opportunities for entrepreneurs.
  • Gives room for simplicity: Allows you to maintain a short and easy way to remember domain names.
  • Higher Ranking on Search Engines i.e. Google.com.ng
  • Develop Nigeria's ICT infrastructure.

In Conclusion

In a nutshell, Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA) has renewed its bid to ensure more Nigerians and organizations register and host their online presence on the .ng domain platform, which is our unique identity in the cyberspace. Are you proud of being called a Nigerian?  Increase our global presence in the cyberspace by using the .ng domain name. Let us enforce the “get your .ng domain name” campaign so as to advertise our uniqueness. 

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