US At Risk To Lose Control Of Internet

The Obama administration is decided to give up control of certain Internet functions on October 1 to a non-profit organization, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).

US Surrenders Internet Control

According to USA Today, the non-profit running the database will become autonomous and accountable to international stakeholders after the U.S. contract with the organization in charge of all Internet domain names expires. The U.S. Commerce Department's National Telecommunications and Information Administration has held the 18-year-old contract for ICANN but on Sept. 30 when it comes to an end is not scheduled to be renewed.

According to Net Right Daily, this issue of Internet giveaway has united various Republican politicians such as presidential candidate Donald Trump and Senator Ted Cruz. But it is unclear if the Republicans will be able to unite sufficiently in order to stop the transfer of control.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell stripped out the language issue from the continuing resolution. According to a report published on the website heritage.org, a vote to stop the debate on the current language issue failed on Sept. 27. However, this does not fix the ICANN issue.

This problem is that Obama administration's decision threatens the integrity of the Internet. According to the website iana.org, in case that President Obama will give up the pversight of the Internet to a multinational body, this measure would effectively end unilateral American control over these functions.

This could be the last chance to save the open and free Internet in the form it exists today. According to Accuracy in Media, a letter was sent to Chairman of the Joints Chiefs of Staff Joseph Dunford Jr. and Defense Secretary Ashton Carter by a group of prominent national security professionals, in opposition to the transfer. The letter states that the prospect that the U.S. might transfer control of the internet to future adversaries is of immediate concern. This could facilitate cyberwarfare against the U.S., particularly in time of conflict.

This transition of control over the Internet address book could mainly affect the status of Internet domain names, including .gov and .mil. Both are of these domain names are considered vital national assets.

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