Who wants to be the .gov gatekeeper?

Shutterstock image.

WHAT: Manage the growing .gov domain.

WHY: The current federal guidance for registering websites in the .gov domain dates back to 2003. The General Services Administration, which is in charge of the registration process, is looking for a bit of a tech refresh.

In a recent request for information, GSA announced that it eventually hopes to establish a secure website for managing requests for .gov addresses and administering the zone file that makes sure each address maps to the appropriate node on the Internet.

The .gov domain is for federal agencies, states, cities and towns in the U.S., as well as recognized American Indian tribes. Part of the registration process is to make sure that competing requests for the same domain name are administered without conflict or overlap.

The registrar is also in charge of providing Domain Name System security extensions, digital certificate validation and other security services, including reporting on attempted breaches and other incidents to the U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team.

Currently 5,000 to 6,000 websites operate in the dot.gov domain, and the RFI states that growth is expected to be about 5 percent annually.

The registration contract is currently held by VeriSign, which took over for Native Technologies in 2011. The RFI also comes as the U.S. government is in the process of ceding control over root zone management for the Internet to a nongovernmental group, which is playing out in global meetings of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. The .gov, .mil and .edu domains are not affected by this transition.

Click here to read the full RFI.

Posted by Adam Mazmanian on Mar 17, 2015 at 9:21 AM


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