5th Middle East DNS Forum

Ankara, Turkey

25 -26 April 2018

Final Report


The Middle East DNS Forum brings together field experts and affected parties to discuss the latest developments in the global domain marketplace and ways to strengthen the DNS industry in the Middle East. The DNS forum offers participants opportunities to:


Network with other stakeholders and industry experts



Discuss business, technical, and policy aspects of the industry


Understanding of ICANN’s role in shaping the future of internet


Learn new approaches to establish and expand online presence



Participants representing various sectors from across the Middle East region and the world will be leading discussions highlighting opportunities in the Middle East Domain Name industry and looking at ways to strengthen the digital presence in the region.


Who Should Attend?

Individuals and organizations interested in the domain industry and related business. Registries, registrars, resellers, web hosting companies, Internet service providers, network operators, brand managers, digital marketers, entrepreneurs, intellectual property professionals, commercial and non-commercial registrants, and end users.

This is an opportunity to:

  • GROW
    Learn about approaches to establishing and growing your online presence
    Hear about recent developments and top trends in the global domain industry from ICANN leadership and industry experts
    Discuss various business, technical and policy aspects of the industry
    Meet with ICANN leadership, policy makers, industry leaders, business owners, and technical experts


Interpretation in Turkish and Arabic will be available throughout the event

Full Agenda | 25-26 April 2018 | Ankara, Turkey


8:00 – 9:00 Registration
9:00 – 10:30 Opening Ceremony Dignitary keynotes from the Information and Communications Technology Authority (local host) and ICANN.

Master of Ceremony | Baher Esmat | VP, Global Stakeholder Engagement, Middle East, ICANN

Omer Fatih Sayan | Chairman, BTK

Nick Tomasso | Managing Director – Middle East and Africa – Istanbul, ICANN

Sally Costerton | Senior Advisor to President and SVP, Global Stakeholder Engagement, ICANN

10:30 – 11:00 Coffee Break
11:00 – 12:30 The Domain Name Industry: A Global Perspective Highlighting latest trends in the domain name industry in light of the 1200+ New generic Top-Level Domains (gTLDs) introduced over the past few years.

Moderator | Mert Saka | Manager, Registry Services and Engagement, ICANN

Panel | How the TLD Space Looks Like

  • Mohammad Zeidan | General Manager, Neustar MENA
  • Raedene McGary| Head of Policy, CentralNIC
  • Mukesh Chulani | Senior Manager, Registrar Services, ICANN
12:30 – 13:00 Short Talks Convener | Baher Esmat | VP, Global Stakeholder Engagement, Middle East, ICANN

Talk | The DNS Entrepreneurship Center (DNS-EC)

  • Hadia ElMiniawi | Director, DNS-EC

Talk | ICANN’s Nominating Committee

  • Nadira Alaraj | NomCom Member
13:00 – 14:00 Lunch
14:00 – 15:30 Efforts for Improved Security and Stability of the Domain Name System (DNS) A keynote on the role of ICANN’s Security, Stability and Resiliency (SSR) team in engaging with global security community on issues pertaining to DNS abuse and misuse. This will be followed by different talks on DNSSEC deployment and the Root Key Signing Key (KSK) rollover.

Moderator | Luna Madi | Communications Director, EMEA, ICANN

Keynote | The Now and Future of Cyber investigations

  • Dave Piscitello | VP, Security and ICT Coordination, ICANN

Panel | DNS Security Extensions (DNSSEC)

  • Patrick Jones | Senior Director, Global Stakeholder Engagement, ICANN
  • Attila Ozgit | Director, NIC.TR
  • Chamseddine Riahi | DNS Engineer, ATI (.TN)
  • Mohamed Abou Abed | DNS Expert
15:30 – 16:00 Coffee Break
16:00 – 17:15 Geographic Top-Level Domains: Sharing Some Experiences City TLD operators sharing their experiences.

Moderator | Mert Saka | Manager, Registry Services and Engagement, ICANN


  • Abdurrahman TIG | General Manager, Medya A.S. (.istanbul/.ist)
  • Maxim Alzoba | Special Projects Manager, FAITID (.MOSCOW/.MOCKBA)
  • Ronald Schwaerzler | CEO, Domain Worx (.wien/.koeln/.cologne)
17:30 – 19:00 Cocktail Reception


8:00 – 9:00 Registration
9:00 – 10:30 Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs): What is Still Missing for Full Adoption This session will explore the world of Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs); mainly where they stand at, and what should be done for their universal acceptance. It will also explore the world of IDNs in Applications, and shed light on an end-user perspective of what still can and must be done

Convener | Baher Esmat | VP, Global Stakeholder Engagement, Middle East, ICANN

Talk | The 2017 IDN World Report

Giovanni Seppia | Manager, External Relations, EURid

Talk | Update on ICANN’s IDN Work, UASG, and the TF-AIDN

Fahd Batayneh | Manager, Global Stakeholder Engagement, Middle East, ICANN

Talk | IDNs in Applications

Raed Alfayez | General Manager, Internet Services, Communications and Information Technology Commission (CITC)

10:30 – 11:00 Coffee Break
11:00 – 12:30 Middle East country code Top Level Domain (ccTLD) Market Trends This session will talk about ccTLD Best Practices. It will provide insights from both the wider Asia-Pacific region, and some regional ccTLD players who have implemented new best practices. The session will also explore how such best practices can help promote the local country code

Moderator | Hadia Elminiawi | Director, DNS-EC

Talk | ccTLD Best Practices from the Asia Pacific Region

  • Leonid Todorov | General Manager, APTLD

Panel | ccTLD Experiences from the region

  • Wafa Dahmani | Chief Engineer, Tunisia Internet (ATI)
  • Banu Acartürk | Director, Administration and Finance, NIC.TR
  • Bashar Al Abdulhadi | Founder and CTO, KuwaitNET
  • Munir Badr | Founder and General Manager, AEServer
12:30 – 13:00 Short Talks Convener | Baher Esmat | VP, Global Stakeholder Engagement, Middle East, ICANN

Registrants Rights in the Domain Name Space

Su Sonia Herring | NCUC Member

13:00 – 14:00 Lunch
14:00 – 15:30 Data Protection Regulations in Turkey Bringing perspectives from Turkish stakeholders on data protection regulations in Turkey with input from ICANN on the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and how it is affecting the domain name industry

Moderator | Faruk Bilir | President, Turkish Data Protection Authority

Talk | GDPR in the Context of Domain Name WHOIS

  • Nigel Hickson | VP, IGO Engagement, ICANN


  • Leyla Keser Barbar | Director, IT Law Institute, Istanbul Bilgi University
  • Cem Kubilay | Microsoft
  • Cengiz Paşaoğlu | Board Member, Turkish Personal Data Protection Authority
15:30 – 16:00 Closing Session Convener | Baher Esmat | VP, Global Stakeholder Engagement, Middle East, ICANN

Closing remarks by ICANN and Local Host

We would like to express our gratitude to members of the Middle East DNS Forum Program Committee (PC) for working on the agenda, and for their valuable contributions along the way.

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Luna Madi
Communications Director, EMEA
Istanbul, Turkey
Tel: +90 533 0313505
Email: luna.madi@icann.org

Buket Coskuner
Global Communications Coordinator
Istanbul, Turkey
Tel: +90 533 4876254
Email: buket.coskuner@icann.org

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ICANN’s mission is to help ensure a stable, secure and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet, you need to type an address into your computer or other device – a name or a number. That address must be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN helps coordinate and support these unique identifiers across the world. ICANN was formed in 1998 as a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation and a community with participants from all over the world.