11 February 2005

Working Group on Internet Governance to Discuss Policy Issues and Priorities, Internet Security, Access for All

(Reissued as received.)

GENEVA, 10 February (UN Information Service) -- The Working Group on Internet Governance (WGIG) will meet at the United Nations Office at Geneva from 14 to 16 February to discuss issues such as domain names administration and Internet Protocol (IP) addresses, administration of the Internet Root Server system, telecommunications infrastructure, broadband access, and competition policy, liberalization, privatization and regulations.

Other issues under discussion include spam, cybersecurity and cybercrime, security of network and information systems, affordable and universal access, consumer and user protection and privacy, and social dimensions and inclusion.

A plenary meeting of the Working Group on the morning of 14 February will be open to all observers. This will be followed by open consultations on 15 and 16 February.

The Working Group will present a preliminary report to the second Preparatory Committee meeting of the Tunis phase of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), to be held in Geneva from 17 to 25 February. The Preparatory Committee will evaluate progress made on the Summit’s Plan of Action, which was agreed to by 175 countries at the Geneva phase of the Summit last December, and focus on preparations for the second phase, which will take place in Tunis from 16 to 18 November.

The 40 members of the Working Group, appointed by Secretary-General Kofi Annan last November, serve in their personal capacity and come from all the world’s regions, as well as from different sectors -- governments, the private sector and civil society. The Group’s Chairman, Nitin Desai, is Special Adviser to the Secretary-General for the World Summit on the Information Society.

The Working Group is releasing draft issue papers reflecting the results of its preliminary findings. These papers will provide a basis for the ongoing work of the Group. Governments and interested parties are invited to provide the Working Group Secretariat with input and comments. More information is available online at www.wgig.org/working-papers.html.

The Working Group was established at the request of the United Nations Member States at the first phase of the World Summit last December. The final report of the Working Group is expected to be submitted to the Secretary-General in July, to be considered at the Tunis Summit in November.

Complete information about the Group’s purpose, meetings, list of members and documents can be found online at www.wgig.org.

For more information, please contact Markus Kummer, Executive Coordinator, Secretariat of the Working Group, e-mail: mkummer@unog.ch, tel.: +41(0) 22 917 54 88.

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