Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA)

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.NG Domain Name Report for December 2018

What is DNS Tunneling?

DNS Tunneling is a method of cyber-attack that encodes the data of other programs or protocols in DNS queries and responses. DNS tunneling often includes data payloads that can be added to an attacked DNS server and used to control a remote server and applications.

For DNS tunneling to take place, a hacker must gain access to your internal server, which will only be possible through a connection to an external network. The hacker will also typically need to create a domain and server which they control. This domain and server would act as the authority to execute DNS tunneling as well as a warehouse for executable malware. All of this pose a risk to any organisation.

A 2016 Infoblox Security Assessment Report found that 40 percent—nearly half—of files tested by Infoblox show evidence of DNS tunneling. Cybercriminals know that DNS is a well-established and trusted protocol, and have figured out that many organizations do not examine their DNS traffic for malicious activity. DNS tunneling enables these cybercriminals to insert malware or pass stolen information into DNS queries, creating a covert communication channel that bypasses most firewalls. While there are quasi-legitimate uses of DNS tunneling, many instances of tunneling are malicious. There are also several off-the-shelf tunneling toolkits readily available on the Internet, so hackers don’t always need technical sophistication to mount DNS tunneling attacks. At the same time, DNS tunneling is often part of very sophisticated attacks, including those sponsored or directly managed by nation states. For example, the recently uncovered Project Sauron—a particularly advanced threat that is considered likely to have been sponsored by a government—uses DNS tunneling for data exfiltration.


2019 is here, Happy New Year!

Let me welcome you to the year 2019. It sure promises to be a very exciting year for us all.

According to a report by Verisign, available at

“The third quarter of 2018 closed with approximately 342.4 million domain name registrations across all top-level domains (TLDs), an increase of approximately 2.6 million domain name registrations, or 0.8 percent, compared to the second quarter of 2018. Domain name registrations have grown by approximately 11.7 million, or 3.5 percent, year over year.

Total country-code TLD (ccTLD) domain name registrations were approximately 149.3 million at the end of the third quarter of 2018, a decrease of approximately 0.5 million domain name registrations, or 0.3 percent, compared to the second quarter of 2018. ccTLDs increased by approximately 4.6 million domain name registrations, or 3.2 percent, year over year”

Whereas the global growth of ccTLD domains is 3.2% year over year, NIRA has seen a growth rate of not less than 30% year over year. This is ten times more than the global figures. A clear testimony to the work the various stakeholders have been doing to grow the numbers. Let us not relent.

On our part, we will continue to work hard to position the Association as well as the Registry in the year 2019. We hope to complete the work on the review of the NIRA Constitution, and also carry out key Infrastructure upgrade, to keep the Registry optimal.

As my tenure gradually comes to an end in the second quarter of this year 2019, I count on your support and continued engagement on matters that relate to NiRA and the prosperity of our dear country, Nigeria.

I want to wish all a very prosperous 2019 and may all our dreams for NiRA come true this year.


I remain your President, 


Rev’d Sunday Folayan

President, NIRA Executive Board

AFRINIC Board calls for volunteers to ASO AC and Governance Committee

The African Network Information Centre (AFRINIC) Board makes appointments to its various bodies from time to time. On the 24th of October 2018, the Board called for volunteers who wish to be considered for appointment by the Board to various AFRINIC bodies. A reminder was sent out recently by AFRINIC.

The calls for volunteers for consideration were  for appointment to the following bodies:

  • Number Resource Organisation (NRO) Number Council (NC)/ Address Supporting Organisation Address Council (ASO AC).The purpose of the NRO NC / ASO AC is to review and develop recommendations on Internet Protocol (IP) address policy and to advise the ICANN Board. For more information, see <>. One of the three AFRINIC representatives in the NRO NC is appointed by the AFRINIC Board, and the Board intends to appoint one community volunteer for a one-year term, from 1 January 2019 to 31 December 2019.
  • Governance Committee. The AFRINIC Governance Committee advises the AFRINIC Board, AFRINIC Membership and the community on matters of corporate governance. For more information, see <>. Two of the five voting members of the Governance Committee are appointed by the Board, and one of those seats has a term that expires on 31 December 2018. The Board intends to fill the seat by appointing a community volunteer for a two-year term from 1 January 2019 to 31 December 2020.

Volunteers are invited to send a brief biography, and their reasons for seeking appointment, to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., by 14th December 2018. Existing appointees are eligible to volunteer for re-appointment.




The Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA) team was in attendance at the just concluded 86th Telecom Consumer Parliament (TCP) hosted by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) at Shehu Musa Yar’adua Centre, Abuja, Nigeria on Thursday 13th December, 2018 with the theme “Overcoming Challenges of Call Masking/Refilling: Task Ahead for the Telecom Industry”.

Mrs. Felicia Onwuegbuchulam, NCC Director Consumer Affairs Bureau delivered the welcome address and stated that the 86th Parliament provided an avenue for face to face encounter with the public and Stakeholders in the telecom industry.

Mr. Sunday Dare, the Executive Commissioner Stakeholders Management who represented Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, EVC NCC, noted that the Nigerian telecom industry loses about $60 billion dollars annually to call masking. Call Masking is described as a phenomenon whereby an international call is masked to appear as a local call on any GSM network in Nigeria. The EVC called on the public to report cases of call masking to NCC, promising that appropriate measures would be taken.

Barrister Ayoola Oke, a telecom consultant, made a presentation titled “Overcoming Challenges of Call Masking/ Refiling: Task ahead for the Telecom Industry”. He explained Call Masking/Refiling and highlighted the impact to the telecoms industry and the consumers. He noted that call masking had reduced by 21 percent as at August, 2018. Also, SIM Boxing Traffic has reduced by 25 percent as at September, 2018.

There was a panel of discussion among the Operators and NCC (the regulator), with input from various stakeholders of the industry, aimed at proffering solutions to the challenges being faced. The following resolutions were adopted to serve as counter- measures to Call Masking/ Refiling and SIM Boxing.

  • The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) as the regulator and the Service Providers should continue to provide awareness of Call Masking and the challenges it poses.
  • Users should report issues relating to Call Masking to Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC)
  • The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) should investigate incidents, identify the perpetrators and take appropriate regulatory measures towards curbing the menace
  • The Service Providers and Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) should adopt more stringent measures to curb Call Masking/ Refiling
  • The regulator, Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) should follow up on service providers to ensure compliance in the implementation of the resolutions

At the event, Nigerians were informed that Nigeria has exceeded the 30% broadband target and has recorded 30.9% penetration target thus far. Also we were informed that NCC has recorded a base of 109 Million Internet  Subscribers and 59 Million broadband service subscribers.