U.S. Aims to Defuse Tension Over Control of Internet
Some Nations Push for New Supervisory Body
The U.S. has agreed to give up supervision of the Internet policy-making body that controls domain names, hoping to satisfy countries that want more international control over the Internet. This week, Washington will find out if its actions have eased global tensions over its cyberspying activities.
World representatives are arriving in Brazil for Net Mundial, a two-day meeting about Internet governance that starts Wednesday in São Paulo. The meeting comes amid fallout over spying by the U.S. National Security Agency that has renewed concerns over the U.S. government’s credibility and over longtime U.S. oversight of the Internet.
Revelations that the NSA targeted foreign leaders, including Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, have soured U.S. diplomatic relations and opened American technology and telecom companies up to increased scrutiny abroad. The U.S., where the Internet started, is now under increasing pressure to share its supervisory duties.
At the top of the agenda will be negotiations for a plan on how the Internet will be overseen globally in the future. The U.S. Commerce Department said last month that it would give up its supervision of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, or Icann. The move would decrease the U.S.’s role as the caretaker of the system of handing out domain names and Web addresses. Read more from WSJ