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Security and Stability Advisory Committee (SSAC) Review

The Board took action on 12 June 2022 to defer the Third Review of the Security and Stability Advisory Committee. See the Board resolution here.

SSAC Review Wiki Workspace Page
Find the latest status updates, recordings of past meetings, and opportunities to participate
Introduction to Reviews
Learn more about Reviews, their purpose and process for conducting and opportunities to participate

The Security and Stability Advisory Committee (SSAC) advises the ICANN community and Board on matters relating to the security and integrity of the Internet's naming and address allocation systems. This includes operational, administrative, and registration matters. SSAC engages in ongoing threat assessment and risk analysis of the Internet naming and address allocation services to assess where the principal threats to stability and security lie, and advises the ICANN community accordingly.  For more information on SSAC, click here.

SSAC Organizational Review

The goal of the review, to be undertaken pursuant to such criteria and standards as the Board shall direct, shall be to determine (i) whether that organization, council or committee has a continuing purpose in the ICANN structure, (ii) if so, whether any change in structure or operations is desirable to improve its effectiveness and (iii) whether that organization, council or committee is accountable to its constituencies, stakeholder groups, organizations and other stakeholders.

These periodic reviews shall be conducted no less frequently than every five years, based on feasibility as determined by the Board. Each five-year cycle will be computed from the moment of the reception by the Board of the final report of the relevant review Working Group.

The graphic below illustrates phases and status of each review - a indicates that all activities within a given phase have been completed.  The chart that follows the graphic provides further details of key activities and milestones within each phase – you can view these details by clicking on each of the phases in the graphic.  The table also contains links to relevant documents.

PhaseActivityDescriptionStart DateDocuments
Plan ReviewInitiate ReviewBoard Resolution Initiating the Second Review of the Security and Stability Advisory Committee18 May 2017
RFP for Independent ExaminerAnnouncement of Independent Examiner Request for Proposals7 Jul 2017
Request for Proposal ExtensionExtended Deadline: Request for Proposal for the SSAC Organizational Review1 Aug 2017
Conduct ReviewSelection of Independent ExaminerAnnouncement of selection of Independent Examiner22 Feb 2018
Assessment ReportIndependent Review of the ICANN Security and Stability Advisory Committee: Assessment Report (translations of Executive Summary available)20 Jun 2018
Draft Report posted for Public Comment Draft Final Report posted for Public Comment15 Oct 2018
Final Report Executive SummaryIndependent Review of the ICANN Security and Stability Advisory Committee: Executive Summary 17 Dec 2018
Final ReportIndependent Review of the ICANN Security and Stability Advisory Committee: Final Report17 Dec 2018
Plan ImplementationFeasibility Assessment and Initial Implementation PlanSSAC Review Feasibility Assessment and Initial Implementation Plan13 May 2019
Board Accepts Final Report and Implementation Plan Board accepts Final Report and Feasibility Assessment of the Initial Implementation Plan23 Jun 2019
SSAC2 Review Detailed Implementation PlanDetailed Implementation Plan drafted by the SSAC2 Review Implementation Work Group19 Dec 2019
Implement ImprovementsBoard Accepts Implementation Plan Board accepts the SSAC Review Detailed Implementation Plan12 Mar 2020
Detailed Implementation ReportSSAC2 Review Detailed Implementation Report25 Jun 2020
Detailed Implementation ReportUpdated SSAC Review Detailed Implementation Report24 Aug 2020
Final Implementation ReportSSAC Review Detailed Implementation Report2 Dec 2020
Board Accepts Final Implementation ReportBoard Accepts Final Implementation Report25 Mar 2021
Standard Operating ProceduresDeferral of Third SSAC ReviewDeferral of the Third SSAC Review (SSAC3)12 Jun 2022


Domain Name System
Internationalized Domain Name ,IDN,"IDNs are domain names that include characters used in the local representation of languages that are not written with the twenty-six letters of the basic Latin alphabet ""a-z"". An IDN can contain Latin letters with diacritical marks, as required by many European languages, or may consist of characters from non-Latin scripts such as Arabic or Chinese. Many languages also use other types of digits than the European ""0-9"". The basic Latin alphabet together with the European-Arabic digits are, for the purpose of domain names, termed ""ASCII characters"" (ASCII = American Standard Code for Information Interchange). These are also included in the broader range of ""Unicode characters"" that provides the basis for IDNs. The ""hostname rule"" requires that all domain names of the type under consideration here are stored in the DNS using only the ASCII characters listed above, with the one further addition of the hyphen ""-"". The Unicode form of an IDN therefore requires special encoding before it is entered into the DNS. The following terminology is used when distinguishing between these forms: A domain name consists of a series of ""labels"" (separated by ""dots""). The ASCII form of an IDN label is termed an ""A-label"". All operations defined in the DNS protocol use A-labels exclusively. The Unicode form, which a user expects to be displayed, is termed a ""U-label"". The difference may be illustrated with the Hindi word for ""test"" — परीका — appearing here as a U-label would (in the Devanagari script). A special form of ""ASCII compatible encoding"" (abbreviated ACE) is applied to this to produce the corresponding A-label: xn--11b5bs1di. A domain name that only includes ASCII letters, digits, and hyphens is termed an ""LDH label"". Although the definitions of A-labels and LDH-labels overlap, a name consisting exclusively of LDH labels, such as"""" is not an IDN."