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IPv6 Transition,  Gov’t Priority
Economy, Business And Markets

IPv6 Transition, Gov’t Priority

To maintain communication with the rest of the world, Iran has no other choice but to move on to Internet Protocol version 6 – the latest version of the IP, said the telecom minister on Sunday.

Addressing professionals of the Internet industry at a conference on “IPv6 transition”, which was held at the site of the ministry of communications and information technology, Mahmoud Va’ezi said that his administration is determined to help prevent a technology gap between Iran and other countries, IRNA reported.  

The government is at the same time trying its best to further develop the needed infrastructure for IPv3 and IPv4, according to Va’ezi.

The conference addressed issues such as implementation of IPv6 in the National Information Network (NIN) – also known as Internet-e Paak or the “Pure” Internet. NIN is described as an independent countrywide network whose content is compatible with Islamic values.

Va’ezi said it is 10 years now since the implementation of the network has been placed on the agenda of the government.

“The NIN development is one of the main priorities of the eleventh cabinet,” said the minister, announcing that a conceptual model for the network is already being implemented.

Va’ezi also said that operators and infrastructure companies should consider this fact when buying their needed equipment, asking them to interact with a special committee, which has been developed for this aim in the Information Technology Organization.

The equipment needs to be compatible with NIN as well as with IPv6, noted the minister.

“By 2030, more than 20 billion of the gadgets and appliances used by humans will be connected to the Internet,” said the minister, concluding that “we should prepare the grounds for moving on safely to the upcoming era.”

Other issues discussed in the conference included the role of Information Technology Organization of Iran in IPv6 transition, the necessity of moving on to IPv6, and human resources development in related fields.

Although the main decision maker in this regard is the government, the plan’s implementation requires collective action, said the minister.  

IPv6, which is intended to replace IPv4, is the communications protocol that provides an identification and location system for computers on networks and routers’ traffic across the Internet. It has been developed by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) to deal with the long-anticipated problem of IPv4 address exhaustion.

On the “smart filtering” issue, Vaezi noted that the plan has been defined to be implemented in three phases.

“The first phase will be implemented in a month, while the second phase will start in the next three months and the third phase will be conducted in next six months,” he asserted.    

The ministry announced a few months ago that it would introduce a new mechanism, called smart filtering, to block “inappropriate” material or websites. The action is part of the new government effort to manage Internet filtering. It supposedly only keeps out sites considered immoral by the government.

Elsewhere in the conference, deputy telecom minister referred to the coincidence of the emergence of IPv6 and “Internet of Things” (IoT) -- the interconnectedness of uniquely identifiable embedded computing devices within the existing Internet infrastructure.

“The coincidence has brought about drastic revolutions to the Internet, forming ‘big data’, which has turned to be a revolutionary concept in cyberspace,” said Nasrollah Jahangard.  

Jahangard, who is also the head of the IT Organization, announced that the technical preliminaries for the transition have been prepared, adding that some pilot projects have also been implemented so far.

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