DENIC represents the German Network Information Center. The service administers the German Top Level Domains, recognizable by the ending “de”. DENIC eG is a non-profit society consisting of Internet providers and IT companies. The head office is located in Frankfurt am Main. Through the service DENICdirect, Internet addresses can be registered directly with DENIC. This makes the registry an exception, since country code domain addresses are usually only issued through its members.
Each country has a central registry, the so-called NIC, the “Network Information Center”. In Germany, DENIC eG is responsible for the registration, allocation and administration of German Top Level Domains. In addition to the Top Level Domains, it also administers Second Level Domains. Furthermore, the service operates, among other things, ENUM, Telephone Number Mapping and the name server (DNS) for German domains. Worldwide, 17 nameservers are operated, for example in Amsterdam, Frankfurt am Main, London, Stockholm or Vienna. DENIC provides Whois queries and other information services and offers a hotline as support for domain holders. The basis of the organization and its tasks is a document from 1994, which defines the requirements for the operation and administration of a Top Level Domain. The standards stated therein are binding for all country code registries.
How secure is DENIC
As the central administrative body for German Internet addresses, DENIC bears a high degree of responsibility. High demands are placed above all on the availability, but also on the security of the servers it operates; failures would have dramatic consequences. In order to guarantee security at all times, the registration system operates with a high degree of redundancy. Two independent data centers ensure that a total failure cannot occur. Synchronization between the centers is ensured via a SAN, a “Storage Area Network”, and a multi-level firewall ensures that external access to the data within the data centers is almost impossible. An entire IT department monitors the trouble-free operation of all services, on the one hand by employees and on the other hand by automated tools.
DENIC is organized as a cooperative, which allows for an open structure, and the responsibilities as well as the resources are distributed decentrally. It is possible for other companies to join at any time. Furthermore, there is constant contact and exchange with organizations around the Internet, both in Germany and abroad. Experts from law, economy and science support decision making and quality assurance within DENIC.
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