A successful year and steady progress on our strategic objectives A message from CIRA’s board chair
The end of fiscal year 2018 (FY18) is the halfway mark in CIRA’s current corporate strategic plan 2017-2020. This reflection point allows us to track progress against the strategy launched two years ago.
The board is pleased with the results achieved in FY18. CIRA’s strategic plan is focused in three areas or pillars: operate, innovate and donate. The FY18 report to members highlights accomplishments and information within each pillar for the year running April 1, 2017 to March 31, 2018.
CIRA’s strategic pillars are interdependent and mutually reinforcing. Operate activities provide revenue to fund donate efforts, innovate activities increase the security of CIRA’s operations and both support the common goal of building a better online Canada.
The first strategic pillar is operate. It focuses on efficiency and excellence in fulfilling CIRA’s core mandate to ensure a safe, secure and reliable .CA for all Canadians. FY18 has been the best year on record for .CA domain growth and now with more than 2.7 million domains under management, CIRA is successfully rejecting the downward curve in domain growth experienced by many CIRA’s peers in other countries.
While the global market for country code top-level domains (ccTLDs) grew by 1.7 per cent in FY18, .CA grew by 5.4 per cent. The board is pleased with this performance and will continue to encourage steady growth in and use of .CA domain names in the year ahead through targeted marketing and awareness programs and investments in tools to build capacity.
Innovate is a second strategic pillar, aimed at generating ideas for products and services that can extend or diversify CIRA’s lines of business. These new products and services take advantage of the superb technology talent at CIRA and especially in CIRA Labs, CIRA’s innovation centre. These new products and services are primarily aimed at increasing the security of online interactions or are an extension of existing CIRA infrastructure platforms and services.
Examples include D-Zone Anycast DNS, a comprehensive Canadian secondary domain name system (DNS) service and D-Zone DNS Firewall, a new cybersecurity service protecting Canadian organizations from malware and ransomware. Launched in FY18 Firewall is one of CIRA’s most successful new products.
A further example is Fury, CIRA’s new registry platform that houses .KIWI and .SX. By the end of next fiscal year, FY19, .CA will operate on Fury as well and we expect that this versatile platform will appeal to others in the TLD community.
An ongoing board focus with management is to ensure that any new products and services are consistent with CIRA’s mandate of being a world class registry for .CA and benefit our stakeholders, or strengthen CIRA’s capacities or the .CA brand. Risk mitigation is a related focus.
CIRA’s third strategic pillar is donate, which includes the contributions and investments CIRA makes in Canada’s internet to make it stronger, safer and more accessible for all Canadians.
The Community Investment Program Fund invests $1 million in grants each year for organizations doing good things for and through the internet. Canadian not-for-profits, charities and academic institutions across the country have applied for a Community Investment grant and as of the end of FY18, CIRA had invested in 130 projects reaching over 400,000 Canadians. Now in its fifth year, the Community Investment Program Fund is the flagship of CIRA’s donate efforts. The board is especially grateful for the efforts each year of our independent directors to make this program successful.
In addition to the granting program, the board encourages CIRA to contribute to Canada’s internet in other ways. Support of internet exchange points in Canada have strengthened the resilience of our domestic infrastructure. The Global Internet & Jurisdiction conference, held in Ottawa in early 2018 brought together stakeholders from around the world to develop policy standards and operational solutions related to the cross-border nature of the internet. CIRA helped coordinate the event and CEO Byron Holland participated in the discussions, illustrating the value that CIRA brings to critical internet governance topics both domestically and globally.
CIRA is well positioned midway in its four year strategic plan and continues to make good progress in building a better online Canada while delivering on its prime responsibilities as the registry for .CA domain names.
On behalf of the board, I wish thank CIRA staff, CEO Byron Holland and its leaders, and all CIRA Members for your continued commitment to CIRA and its work.
I’m proud of the year we’ve just had and I’m confident we can continue to effectively move forward into the final two years of our corporate strategic plan and our goal to build a better online Canada.
Helen McDonald, Chair
Canadian Internet Registration Authority, Board of Directors