ICANN’s Africa Engagement Office Opening Nairobi, Kenya
Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA) was at the opening of ICANN’s first Engagement Office in Africa. NiRA delegates were in attendance at the ICANN 55 meeting in Marrakech, Morocco, when the announcement was made by the ICANN Board Chair, Steve Crocker. He broke the news of the opening of ICANN’s first African Office in Nairobi, Kenya. While making his opening remarks, Dr. Crocker said: “I’m proud to announce that ICANN’s first engagement center in Africa will open in Nairobi, Kenya.”
The Kenya office – called ICANN Engagement Centre – was formally opened on Tuesday 24th May 2016, in Nairobi. The opening of the Nairobi office comes after 6 years when the country played host to ICANN37 meeting in March 2010.
ICANN’s Nairobi office will act as the organisation’s foothold in Africa and be focused on championing Institutional engagement with Stakeholders, including Governments, Civil societies, Technical and Academic Institutions. NiRA applauds the decision and has observed ICANN’s intent on becoming increasingly international in terms of its outlook, policies and the composition of its community. We at NiRA believe that the opening of this local office in Africa should create a more level playing ground for Africans.
Congratulations ICANN, Congratulations Kenya!!
Whois Records & Whois Look Ups
Being able to contact a domain name owner (or website administrator) is important for a variety of reasons. It isn’t always easy and quite often, it necessitates a bit of Internet savvy and research. Fortunately, WHOIS, the connection between domain name ownership and the web browsing community, is a free tool that is commonly used to determine the owner of a particular domain name. The NiRA WHOIS can be accessed via the link http://www.nira.org.ng/index.php/nira-support/whois
As a worldwide database, WHOIS stores domain name ownership in the form of contact records. It’s regulated by The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), and it stores contact information for a domain name’s registrant (the person who purchased a domain) and registrar (the company that registered the domain name on the registrant’s behalf).
Information in a Whois Record
Other information includes dates that a domain was created, the name servers associated with a domain and the domain name’s expiration date. If any of that information changes between the time the domain was created and will expire, that information is appended to a record as an update. A registrant’s company name, contact information, phone number, mailing address, and email address are a part of the Whois record for each domain name.
What WHOIS is For
Over the years, people have consulted WHOIS for a variety of reasons. Its original purpose was to maintain the security and integrity of the Internet. Today, people frequently use it to identify the people behind cyber-crimes, like illegal distribution of copyrighted material, copyright and trademark violations, spamming and malicious virus distribution. These types of activities make WHOIS an indispensable tool more than ever before. For domain investors, WHOIS records are often used to contact domain owners to buy or sell domain names.
Accurate WHOIS information is required to be kept by domain name Registrars. In the case where the WHOIS records are invalid, a person or business may report an invalid WHOIS record to ICANN using a form on the ICANN website. Many domain registrars also have means to report invalid WHOIS listings. From NiRA website, if the Registrar fails to maintain accurate WHOIS record, it means that information of Registrants are inaccurate and would be misleading.
Domain registries and registrars offer a tool for people to perform WHOIS searches or WHOIS lookups, and the results give contact information for the registrant as well as technical and administrative contacts. Third party paid services like Domain Tools
offer historical WHOIS records, and a service called Whoisology allows people to search for domains
Many registrants prefer to have their domain names registered privately. This means that they are paying the domain registrar to use the contact information for a privacy service, usually affiliated with the domain registrar. The cost for privacy depends on the domain registrar, but it isn’t very expensive. In the case of a court order or a subpoena, the privacy may be removed. Domain registrars could have different policies regarding the release of private WHOIS records. NiRA WHOIS maintains basic information of the Registrants for security reasons. Registrars are encouraged to maintain accurate basic data of the Registrants.