Many news sites report that the Internet could be floundering all over the world for the next 48 hours. However, this is false information based on exaggerated facts.
The news, which has spread widely in India, was reportedly first reported by Russia Today, a Russian news media close to the Kremlin.
It is derived from information from the Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the organization responsible for IP addressing and the administration of top-level domain names.
This important player in the operation of the global Internet was to proceed on Thursday to update the encryption keys used to protect the system of domain names (DNS). The latter identifies each device connected to the Internet by assigning it an IP address. In the case of Internet sites, the DNS associates the IP address with the URL (the one that begins with www) of the site. It acts in a way like a gigantic address book. This is called the operation of translating the URL into the “resolve a domain name” IP address.
ICANN warned the public on September 17 that it was going to proceed to change the encryption keys on October 11, 2018. This update was successfully completed Thursday around noon, confirmed ICANN on Twitter and on its website.
— ICANN (@ICANN) October 11, 2018
Not a problem in more than 99% of cases
Connection problems were well and truly anticipated, but not in the proportion reported by many media outlets around the world.
“After the start of [the update] […], a very small percentage of Internet users should have problems resolving some domain names,” ICANN wrote in a report . Data analysis suggests that over 99% of users will not […] be affected by [the update]. ”
The problems affecting the remaining 1% of users come from poor preparation by their Internet Service Providers (ISPs). They can be corrected by the ISPs concerned in the following hours.
Users who have the misfortune to be part of the 1% of people affected will begin to have problems connecting to the Internet by Saturday noon, warns ICANN.
Marie Bram started working for Spruce Tribune in 2017. Marie grew up in a small town in northern Manitoba. But moved to Ontario for university. Before joining Spruce Tribune, Marie briefly worked as a freelance journalist for CBC News. She covers politics and the economy.