Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA)

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When the Domain Name System (DNS) was invented, it became the central part of the Internet, providing a way to match names (a website you are seeking) to numbers (the address for the website). Anything connected to the Internet - laptops, tablets, mobile phones and websites - has an Internet Protocol (IP) address made up of numbers. Your favorite website might have an IP address like

It is obviously not easy for human beings to remember all IP Addresses of all gadgets connected on the Internet. It is easier for people to recognize and remember domain names such as DNS matches domain names with IP addresses, thereby enabling humans to use memorable domain names on the Internet while computers Internet can use IP addresses.

With the widespread use of the DNS, vulnerabilities have since been discovered. The vulnerabilities could allow attackers to hijack the process of locating a file or a website on the Internet. The purpose of the attack could be to take control of the session to send the user to the hijacker's own deceptive website for the theft of account names and passwords.

The identified vulnerabilities brought about the introduction of the DNS Security Technology called DNS Security Extensions (DNSSEC) to secure this part of the Internet's infrastructure.

Domain Name System Security Extension (DNSSEC) adds security to the Domain Name System.
The original design of the Domain Name System (DNS) did not include security; instead it was designed to be a scalable distributed system. In summary, the Domain Name System Security Extensions (DNSSEC) attempts to add security to the domain name system, while maintaining backwards compatibility.

DNSSEC was designed to protect Internet resolvers (clients) from forged DNS data, such as the one created by DNS cache poisoning. It is a set of extensions to DNS, which provide to DNS clients (resolvers).

The DNSSEC deployment/implementation at Top Level Domains (TLDs) worldwide is at different levels. In general, the implementation level in most African ccTLDs is at the experimental level whilst the root zones have been signed at most ccTLDS in North America, Europe and Asia. Latin American ccTLDS are better positioned than African ccTLDs.

Nigeria is now ripe to sign the .ng root, and there are plans to do that in the course of the year.

Capacity Development Survey by ICANN Global Stakeholder Engagement

The Global Stakeholder Engagement (GSE) team of ICANN has launched a short Stakeholder Capacity Development Survey, to prioritize the delivery of capacity development services. The survey will run from 8th to 22th January 2019, with the aim of publishing the results and analysis in late February 2019. With the result of the survey, ICANN's regional engagement teams will assess regional priorities and facilitate ongoing discussions with the community.  These will inform future regional work plans and engagement strategies.

Capacity development has become a key piece of the ICANN organisation’s engagement in the regions. Based on preliminary data collected from the regional engagement teams, it is clear that requests for technical and leadership training, as well as general knowledge of ICANN and its mission, are increasing. By assessing the priorities of various community groups and regions, ICANN will be able to ensure that resources and engagement efforts are focused in a way that meets the needs of the community.

The responses from the survey will determine how and where different capacity development services to address community needs will be provided and measured. Also it is expected that the results will affect future engagement plans and budget exercises when planning for activities, online learning ( and in-person capacity development resource requests.

This short survey was initially released as a pilot in two of ICANN's engagement regions (Africa and Eastern Europe/Central Asia) in advance of ICANN63 in Barcelona, Spain.

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IT Projects Clearance Process at NITDA

On the 9th of January 2019, a press release was issued by the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) informing Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), Government owned companies, other government establishments and the general public that its efforts at streamlining as well as fast-tracking the process of the IT Projects Clearing House mandate has been fully automated.

The automation of the process enhances transparency, accountability, efficiency and effectiveness in the process of obtaining clearance. The MDAs, Government owned companies and other Federal Public Institutions are expected to submit their projects via the IT Projects Clearance portal:

NITDA, in line with its mandate to regulate the practice of Information Technology (IT) in the public sector, had issued statements in November 2016 calling on Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) and other establishments of the Federal Government to submit their Projects to be executed for IT clearance before commencement.

The clearance process is designed to achieve the following among others:

  • track Government spending in IT and ensure synergy in National investments;
  • ensure the availability of accurate statistics on Government’s IT assets and Investments to help government make informed IT decisions;
  • prevent mismanagement of public funds and development of projects in silos where significant resources can be integrated to save costs, promote shared services, interoperability and improve efficiency; and
  • ensure that the technology being implemented is up to date and suitable for the country from the security and environmental point of view.

The IT Projects Clearance regulation is designed to ensure that IT projects are properly conceptualized and executed in line with global best practices. Furthermore, it is designed to support Mr President’s fight against corruption by curbing the wastages and mismanagement of public funds on frivolous IT projects. The unanimous verdict of MDAs and other Federal Public Institutions that have gone through the process is that in addition to compliance with Federal Government directives, it is worthwhile and value adding. Furthermore, the process has facilitated a saving of over N13.0 Billion to the Federal Government.

By the same press release, NITDA advised all MDAs, all Government owned companies and other Federal Public Institutions to comply with the directive to submit all their IT projects for clearance as non-compliance constitutes a breach of the Agency’s regulations and is considered a criminal offence, punishable under the NITDA Act 2007.

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A Window for Physical and Virtual Presence

Recently the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), in one of its press releases, highlighted ways in which its Business Incentive Strategy has paved way for more business registrations.

A window was created for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) to formalise their businesses and register with the commission. Registering would enable the MSMEs have access to the corporate CAC world, with all attendant benefits. As an incentive, the Commission also reduced the cost of registering business names has reduced.

This CAC advocacy is in line with NIRA’s vision for Nigerian businesses to take advantage of Digital inclusion. NiRA continues to advocate that as businesses register their names at the CAC, they should also register their .ng domain name for their online presence.

Let me quickly bring back a few of these advocacies.

  1. “Help us grow the numbers of .ng Domain Names” - From the President of NIRA
  2. “The Relevance and Importance of .ng Domain Names” by Chukwuemeka Fred Agbata Jnr, available at
  3. “Why Register .NG Domain Names”, by Web4Africa available at

Join us to push .ng as the preferred brand, and to encourage as many businesses to take advantage of the CAC window, to cement their business footprint both physically and virtually online. This is the best time to act.

I remain your President, 


Rev’d Sunday Folayan

President, NIRA Executive Board

NextGen@ICANN Application Round for ICANN65

Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) launched the application round for those interested in participating at the ICANN65 Policy Meeting in Marrakech, Morocco through the NextGen Program. The Meeting will take place from 24th to 27th June 2019. The application round will remain open until the 11th January 2019. Successful candidates will be announced on the ICANN website on the 8th February 2019. For more information. Click Here