Price for Web Host­ing Ser­vices in Be­larus

A fee for reg­is­ter­ing in­for­ma­tion net­works, sys­tems, and re­sources has been in­tro­duced in Be­larus

Economy of Belarus - - CONTENTS -

A fee for reg­is­ter­ing in­for­ma­tion net­works, sys­tems, and re­sources has been in­tro­duced in Be­larus

As of 9 Jan­uary 2015 the reg­is­tra­tion of web­sites in Be­larus costs money. Who will pay 50% of the base amount, why it costs that much, and what it means for web­site own­ers has been ex­plained by the State Su­per­vi­sory Depart­ment for Telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions of the Repub­lic of Be­larus (Bel­GIE).

The nov­elty that sent waves all over the Be­laru­sian on­line com­mu­nity has its own pre­his­tory. In Fe­bru­ary 2010 the Be­laru­sian Pres­i­dent signed De­cree No. 60 on mea­sures to im­prove the us­age of the na­tional seg­ment of the In­ter­net. The de­cree obliged the In­for­ma­tion Tech­nolo­gies and Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Min­istry or an agency au­tho­rized by the min­istry to set up a reg­istry of all the in­for­ma­tion net­works, sys­tems, and re­sources of Be­larus, which are used to sell com­modi­ties and ser­vices in the coun­try. Bel­GIE was then au­tho­rized to do the job.

“We started work­ing on the project in early 2010. Within vir­tu­ally two months we com­pleted the tech­no­log­i­cal part of the project. We were among the first in the coun­try to al­low dig­i­tal doc­u­ments as part of ad­min­is­tra­tive pro­ce­dures. We went through all the nec­es­sary au­dits, re­ceived a per­mit from the Op­er­a­tions and Anal­y­sis Cen­ter un­der the Pres­i­dent of the Repub­lic of Be­larus to of­fer ser­vices us­ing dig­i­tal signatures, in­clud­ing the dis­tri­bu­tion of public dig­i­tal sig­na­ture keys. We gave free dig­i­tal sig­na­ture keys as well as the nec­es­sary soft­ware to In­ter­net ser­vice providers. It greatly ac­cel­er­ated the reg­is­tra­tion process. You can only imag­ine how long the queues would be if our In­ter­net ser­vice providers – about 400 in to­tal – would have to per­son­ally present all the re­quired hard­copy doc­u­ments,” noted Bel­GIE rep­re­sen­ta­tives.

The com­pany spent over Br3 bil­lion in pro­pri­etary funds on de­vel­op­ing the soft­ware and hard­ware, in­clud­ing dig­i­tal sig­na­ture soft­ware and keys. At present – five years af­ter the de­cree came into force – the reg­is­tra­tion of web re­sources is on decline. While in 2010 about 50,000 web­sites were reg­is­tered, th­ese days about 30,000 re­sources are reg­is­tered per an­num.

Vir­tu­ally all the gov­ern­ment agen­cies reg­is­tered their web re­sources back in 2010. At present the num­ber of reg­is­tra­tion ap­pli­ca­tions sub­mit­ted by gov­ern­ment agen­cies stands at about 0.1% of the to­tal num­ber. There­fore, the in­tro­duc­tion of the web­site reg­is­tra­tion fee will not re­quire spend­ing bud­getary funds, Bel­GIE rep­re­sen­ta­tives stressed.

The size of the fee – 50% of the base amount – is not ac­ci­den­tal. “Tech­nolo­gies change, we con­stantly im­prove our soft­ware,

the hard­ware breaks down and has to be re­placed. Be­sides, in ad­di­tion to servers the reg­is­tra­tion process in­volves per­son­nel – ad­min­is­tra­tors, op­er­a­tors that han­dle the ap­pli­ca­tions and have to get paid. All of that needs money but only Bel­GIE cov­ers the costs. Our cal­cu­la­tions sug­gested that half of the base amount will be the most op­ti­mal fee for reg­is­ter­ing an on­line re­source. The sum in­cludes only the real costs the en­ter­prise bears to per­form such an im­por­tant ad­min­is­tra­tive pro­ce­dure,” noted Bel­GIE spe­cial­ists.

In­di­vid­u­als and cor­po­ra­tions should un­der­stand that they will not be billed di­rectly for the web­site reg­is­tra­tion pro­ce­dure. In­ter­net ser­vice providers will be. And they will de­cide whether to shift the costs onto own­ers of web­sites or not. “We as­sume that many In­ter­net ser­vice providers will ex­ploit the ab­sence of the web­site reg­is­tra­tion fee for ad­ver­tis­ing pur­poses. They al­ways have to think about com­pe­ti­tion while the fee prompts read­ily avail­able ad­ver­tis­ing op­tions. In­ter­net ser­vice providers may of­fer free reg­is­tra­tion to web­site own­ers. In other words, the for­mer may find in­ter­nal re­sources to cover the costs as a bonus for the lat­ter. Even if they do not do that, the fee is minis­cule. If the web­site owner in­tends to op­er­ate the web­site for at least one year, then, if paid over the course of 12 months, the fee will be over­shad­owed by host­ing fees,” Bel­GIE rep­re­sen­ta­tives noted.

It is im­por­tant to note that the fee will be col­lected only for the reg­is­tra­tion of new web re­sources. No fee will be charged for re-reg­is­ter­ing the ex­ist­ing web­sites. The reg­is­tra­tion pro­ce­dure will not change. How­ever, ap­pli­ca­tions will be re­viewed as of the date the fee is paid, not the date the ap­pli­ca­tion is sub­mit­ted.

Be­sides, in the near fu­ture the Bel­GIE web­site will im­ple­ment WHOIS func­tion­al­ity. A ded­i­cated web­page will of­fer ac­cess to state reg­is­tra­tion in­for­ma­tion about a web­site. If the web­site is owned by a com­pany, in­for­ma­tion about the com­pany will be avail­able as well. “It will be use­ful both for nat­u­ral per­sons and rep­re­sen­ta­tives of gov­ern­ment agen­cies. At present in or­der to learn who the owner of a web re­source is, you have to con­tact us and wait for an of­fi­cial re­sponse. It may take up to 15 days. Once the new func­tion­al­ity is en­abled, any­one will be able to ac­cess our web­site and get the an­swer within sec­onds,” the source stressed.

The timely in­for­ma­tion de­liv­ery will be fa­cil­i­tated by an­other nov­elty. Web­site own­ers have been in­structed to in­form host­ing providers about changes of web­site reg­is­tra­tion in­for­ma­tion within five days while the host­ing providers are sup­posed to for­ward the in­for­ma­tion to Bel­GIE. Since the ad­min­is­tra­tive pro­ce­dure used for reg­is­ter­ing web re­sources is done elec­tron­i­cally us­ing dig­i­tal signatures, in­for­ma­tion about the reg­is­tered re­sources will be up­dated in a timely man­ner.

While in 2010 about 50,000 web­sites were reg­is­tered, th­ese days about 30,000 re­sources are reg­is­tered per an­num

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