Report on the Redelegation of the .PT domain representing Portugal to Associação DNS.PT
8 August 2013
This report is being provided under the contract for performance of the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) function between the United States Government and the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). Under that contract, ICANN performs the “IANA functions”, which include receiving delegation and redelegation requests concerning TLDs, investigating the circumstances pertinent to those requests, making its recommendations, and reporting actions undertaken in connection with processing such requests.
The “PT” ISO 3166-1 code is designated for use to represent Portugal.
Chronology of events
The currently designated manager for the .PT top-level domain is Fundação para a Computação Científica Nacional (“FCCN”), as described in the IANA Root Zone Database.
On 11 December 2012, the Council of Ministers for Portugal decided to restructure FCCN’s mission and assignments into the existing governmental organization Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia, I.P. (FCT).
On 28 December 2012, the legislation “Decreto Lei No. 266-G/2012” was promulgated by the President of Portugal. This legislation also references the integration of FCCN in to FCT.
The .PT top-level domain registry was not considered as part of the FCCN functions to be integrated into FCT. Since 14 January 2013, FCCN held meetings and made presentations to the Minister of Science and Education, local registrars, consumer associations and telecommunications regulators for the establishment of a new entity who would be taking over the responsibility of .PT management.
On 14 February 2013, the Council of Ministers decided that the management, operation and maintenance of the .PT registry should to be assigned to a private association. On 11 March 2013, the final decision to establish a new private entity was taken in a meeting in the Presidency of the Council of Ministers.
On 10 April 2013, the legislation “Decreto Lei No. 55/2013” was promulgated by the President. The legislation directed FCT to take over the mission and responsibilities of the FCCN, except for the management, operation and maintenance of the .PT top-level domain. A new entity — an association — was to be created to take over the responsibility of .PT with FCT to act as one of its founders.
On 9 May 2013, the new entity Associação DNS.PT was created to “manage, operate and maintain the top-level domain registration corresponding to Portugal, .pt” among others. Its founding members included entities from the government, public and business sectors in the country.
On 14 May 2013, Associação DNS.PT commenced a request to ICANN for redelegation of the .PT top-level domain.
Proposed Sponsoring Organisation and Contacts
The proposed sponsoring organisation is Associação DNS.PT, a private non-profit institution established in Portugal.
The proposed administrative contact is Luisa Lopes Gueifão, Chairman of Associação DNS.PT. The administrative contact is understood to be based in Portugal.
The proposed technical contact is Assis Neves Guerreiro, Technical Director, Associação DNS.PT.
The proposed administrative and technical contacts are the existing contacts, but with their affiliation updated to the new organization.
Evaluation of the Request
The top-level domain is eligible for continued delegation under ICANN policy, as it is the assigned ISO 3166-1 two-letter code representing Portugal.
Support for the application to redelegate the domain was provided by Raúl Capaz Coelho, the Secretary-General of the Ministry of Education and Science. Additional statements in support of this redelegation were provided from two local registrars Amen Portugal and Flesk Telecom Lda.
The application is consistent with known applicable local laws in Portugal.
The proposed sponsoring organisation undertakes responsibility to operate the domain in a fair and equitable manner.
Based in country
The proposed sponsoring organisation is constituted in Portugal. The proposed administrative contact is understood to be resident in Portugal. The registry is to be operated in the country.
The request is deemed uncontested, with the currently listed sponsoring organisation consenting to the transfer.
Based on the information submitted, ICANN staff has not identified any stability issues that would warrant a transfer plan given the substantive operation is not changing. All staffing, policies, registry platform, and the physical address of the organisation are to remain unchanged.
The application has provided satisfactory details on the technical and operational infrastructure and expertise that will be used to operate the .PT domain. Proposed policies for management of the domain have also been tendered.
ICANN is tasked with coordinating the Domain Name System root zone as part of a set of functions governed by a contract with the U.S. Government. This includes accepting and evaluating requests for delegation and redelegation of top-level domains.
A subset of top-level domains are designated for the local Internet communities in countries to operate in a way that best suits their local needs. These are known as country-code top-level domains (ccTLDs), and are assigned by ICANN to responsible trustees (known as “Sponsoring Organisations”) that meet a number of public-interest criteria for eligibility. These criteria largely relate to the level of support the trustee has from its local Internet community, its capacity to ensure stable operation of the domain, and its applicability under any relevant local laws.
Through ICANN’s IANA department, requests are received for delegating new ccTLDs, and redelegating or revoking existing ccTLDs. An investigation is performed on the circumstances pertinent to those requests, and, when appropriate, the requests are implemented and a recommendation for delegation or redelegation is made to the U.S. National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA).
Purpose of evaluations
The evaluation of eligibility for ccTLDs, and of evaluating responsible trustees charged with operating them, is guided by a number of principles. The objective of the assessment is that the action enhances the secure and stable operation of the Internet’s unique identifier systems.
In considering requests to delegate or redelegate ccTLDs, input is sought regarding the proposed new Sponsoring Organisation, as well as from persons and organisations that may be significantly affected by the change, particularly those within the nation or territory to which the ccTLD is designated.
The assessment is focussed on the capacity for the proposed sponsoring organisation to meet the following criteria:
- The domain should be operated within the country, including having its sponsoring organisation and administrative contact based in the country.
- The domain should be operated in a way that is fair and equitable to all groups in the local Internet community.
- Significantly interested parties in the domain should agree that the prospective trustee is the appropriate party to be responsible for the domain, with the desires of the national government taken very seriously.
- The domain must be operated competently, both technically and operationally. Management of the domain should adhere to relevant technical standards and community best practices.
- Risks to the stability of the Internet addressing system must be adequately considered and addressed, particularly with regard to how existing identifiers will continue to function.
Method of evaluation
To assess these criteria, information is requested from the applicant regarding the proposed sponsoring organisation and method of operation. In summary, a request template is sought specifying the exact details of the delegation being sought in the root zone. In addition, various documentation is sought describing: the views of the local internet community on the application; the competencies and skills of the trustee to operate the domain; the legal authenticity, status and character of the proposed trustee; and the nature of government support fort he proposal. The view of any current trustee is obtained, and in the event of a redelegation, the transfer plan from the previous sponsoring organisation to the new sponsoring organisation is also assessed with a view to ensuring ongoing stable operation of the domain.
After receiving this documentation and input, it is analysed in relation to existing root zone management procedures, seeking input from parties both related to as well as independent of the proposed sponsoring organisation should the information provided in the original application be deficient. The applicant is given the opportunity to cure any deficiencies before a final assessment is made.
Once all the documentation has been received, various technical checks are performed on the proposed sponsoring organisation’s DNS infrastructure to ensure name servers are properly configured and are able to respond to queries correctly. Should any anomalies be detected, ICANN staff will work with the applicant to address the issues.
Assuming all issues are resolved, an assessment is compiled providing all relevant details regarding the proposed sponsoring organisation and its suitability to operate the relevant top-level domain.