In 2017, the ZA Central Registry NPC (ZACR) in collaboration with the ZA Domain Name Authority (ZADNA), launched Domain Name Security (DNSSEC) to provide members within the domain name value chain with an assurance that a .ZA domain name address could be trusted.
In the past, concerns have been raised around the lack of adequate security measures related to the .ZA domain name system.
Specifically, in April 2019 it was reported that “South Africa’s .ZA domain is a security disaster waiting to happen”, based on the premise that the .ZA name space did not offer Registry Lock as a risk mitigation measure against domain name hijacking.
Now, following a process of policy development and approvals from the local and international domain name authorities of ZADNA and ICANN respectively, the ZACR is offering this further layer of protection for the EPP-based domain names under its management.
“Registry Lock is a function that can now be activated at the Registry level to prevent the unauthorised transfer of domain names for the following domain name extensions: co.za net.za org.za web.za as well as the four gTLDs of .africa .capetown .durban and .joburg,’ says ZACR CEO, Lucky Masilela.
“The process is quite seamless, as it requires our channel partners (EPP-accredited Registrars) to provide the Registry with a passphrase via a telephonic validation process to enable changes, such as, updates, transfers and deletes to be processed on a selected domain name.
“Manual intervention, although not perfect, has the current benefit of not being easily manipulated like fully automated systems.”
Domain name holders are encouraged to take advantage of this service by contacting their EPP-accredited Registrar (www.registry.net.za or www.registry.africa) to protect their domains from growing cyber threats and business interruption.