The US has confirmed it is finally ready to cede power of the internet’s naming system, ending the almost 20-year process to hand over a crucial part of the internet’s governance.
The Domain Naming System, DNS, is one of the internet’s most important components.
It pairs the easy-to-remember web addresses - like bbc.com - with their relevant servers. Without DNS, you’d only be able to access websites by typing in its IP address, a series of numbers such as “126.96.36.199”.
More by circumstance than intention, the US has always had ultimate say over how the DNS is controlled - but not for much longer.
It will give up its power fully to Icann - the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers - a non-profit organisation.
The terms of the change were agreed upon in 2014, but it wasn’t until now that the US said it was finally satisfied that Icann was ready to make the change.