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NASSCOM And ICANN Collaborate On Internet Innovation Research

India’s National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) and Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) today announced a joint collaboration on research and engagement activities that will foster innovation in internet identifier technologies. NASSCOM’s Centre of Excellence for the Internet of Things (NASSCOM CoE-IOT) and ICANN have established a partnership center, known as the Internet Identifier Innovation Center, which will drive collaborative activities as laid out in a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed by both parties in June 2018.

The project team is comprised of ICANN technical experts, NASSCOM’s COE-IOT team, the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Hyderabad team and participants from India’s Education and Research Network (ERNET).

Commenting on the partnership, David Conrad, ICANN Chief Technology Officer, said, “We are excited about this collaboration, as NASSCOM CoE-IOT has an extensive network within the industry and academia. This is ICANN’s first partnership center focused on technical research, and we anticipate that it will contribute to ICANN’s technical remit in ensuring the stable and secure operation of the Internet’s unique identifier systems.

“This collaboration provides a structure for us to jointly identify research projects, particularly in new technologies related to the Internet’s system of unique identifiers. The teams began research on the Domain Name System (DNS) and Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) in the context of the Internet of Things (IoT) last year. This first research project focuses on testing the use of the DNS to update IoT firmware, studying how the proposed technology could scale outside a lab environment. This work is nearing completion and will contribute to a proposal in the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) documenting the mechanism,” Conrad continued.

Besides being major information technology and telecommunications powerhouse, India has a fast-growing Internet ecosystem, with close to 560 million Internet users 1 today and exponential growth expected. India also leads the world in IPv6 adoption, with 56.8 percent of all IPv6 connections2. These provide a robust ecosystem to test new technologies.

Speaking on the collaboration, Debjani Ghosh, President, NASSCOM, said, “This is the first collaboration of its kind and with our combined resources, we hope to witness significant innovation and development in the DNS and Internet space to support billions of IoT devices in the coming years. As a country, India can further strengthen its potential as an innovation hub through more investments in research and strategic collaborations. It is our global initiatives and partnerships that will pave the road ahead and create an ecosystem that nurtures co-creation and innovative systems. We are confident that we will usher in a new wave of innovation and intelligence in the country with this association.”

The Internet Identifier Innovation Center will also conduct engagement activities such as:

  • Raising awareness of the research projects and promoting partnerships within the Indian technical community

  • Providing ICANN readouts, community discussions and capacity-development workshops to strengthen active participation in ICANN’s policy-making processes

  • Facilitating participation of ICANN and NASSCOM members in outreach activities to further strengthen engagement with the wider community and providing support for the multistakeholder governance model of the Internet

A key pillar in ICANN’s International Office Strategy is to establish strategic relationships that support specific stakeholder needs and ensure that ICANN is active in matters that impact ICANN’s mission. ICANN has established partnership centers in Egypt, Korea, and Paraguay to reach more stakeholders around the world. The Internet Identifier Innovation Center is the latest addition.

About NASSCOM The National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) is the premier trade body and chamber of commerce of the IT-BPM industries in India and comprises of over 2800-member companies including both Indian and multinational organizations that have a presence in India. Guided by the vision of the country to adopt and integrate digital technologies, NASSCOM believes in enabling a digital transformation in the country through technology. NASSCOM aims to position the country as a global hub for innovation and co-creation by imbibing the ideology of ‘Think Digital, Think India’, to drive focus towards emerging technologies, digitally skilling talent and ensuring the pace of transformation in the country meets the global standard. NASSCOM’s membership base constitutes over 95% of the industry revenues in India and employs over 4 million professionals.

About NASSCOM COE-IOT NASSCOM COE-IOT, a Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) initiative with Education and Research Network (ERNET) and state governments, is providing data-driven decision making, enhancing academic capacities, supporting imperative skills and cultivating talent development. The COE-IOT aims to serve as a platform for intelligence-sharing and technology collaboration between stakeholders, to build collective capabilities for the industry and country in the cutting-edge areas of IoT and artificial intelligence. It provides high-end technology, field expertise, and curated programs to augment capabilities across academia, enterprises, government, innovators and advanced start-ups.

About ICANN ICANN’s mission is to help ensure a stable, secure, and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you have to type an address – a name or a number – into your computer or other devices. That address must be unique, so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation and a community with participants from all over the world.