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Regional internet registry

(also RIR)

Regional internet registry definition

A regional internet registry is an organization that performs a crucial role in managing and distributing internet resources, such as IP addresses and AS numbers, within a specific geographic region.

Regional internet registries act as intermediaries between internet service providers (ISPs), enterprises, and organizations that need IP addresses for their networks. They ensure a fair and efficient allocation of these resources while following global Internet standards and policies.

Each regional internet registry operates independently on a regional basis, where each region typically has its designated regional internet registry. They cooperate globally, whereas the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) delegates the allocation of IP addresses to the RIRs.

See also: exit node, ISP

The 5 regional internet registries

  • The American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN) serves the US, Canada, and parts of the Caribbean.
  • The Réseaux IP Européens Network Coordination Centre (RIPE NCC) serves Europe, the Middle East, and parts of Central Asia.
  • The Asia-Pacific Network Information Centre (APNIC) serves Asia and the Pacific region.
  • The Latin America and Caribbean Network Information Centre (LACNIC) serves Latin America and other parts of the Caribbean.
  • The African Network Information Centre (AFRINIC) serves Africa.

These regional internet registries manage IP address blocks and ensure equitable distribution among their respective regions.

Regional internet registries possess the following characteristics:

  • They operate as non-profit, member-based organizations.
  • A board of directors elected by members governs the RIR.
  • They employ a staff of technical experts, including network engineers, policy analysts, and other specialists.
  • They receive funding through fees paid by organizations registering IP addresses and AS numbers.