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Few IPv4 Addresses Remain Available

Less than 10 percent of available IPvr addresses remain unallocated, according to the Number Resource Organization, which oversees the allocation of all Internet number resources. This small pool of existing IP addresses marks a critical moment in IPv4 address exhaustion, ultimately impacting the future network operations of all businesses and organizations around the globe.

“This is a key milestone in the growth and development of the global Internet,” said Axel Pawlik, chairman of the NRO. “With less than 10 percent of the entire IPv4 address range still available for allocation to RIRs, it is vital that the Internet community take considered and determined action to ensure the global adoption of IPv6. The limited IPv4 addresses will not allow us enough resources to achieve the ambitions we all hold for global Internet access. The deployment of IPv6 is a key infrastructure development that will enable the network to support the billions of people and devices that will connect in the coming years.”

Internet Protocol is a set of technical rules that defines how devices communicate over a network. There are currently two versions of IP, IPv4 and IPv6. IPv6 includes a modern numbering system that provides a much larger address pool than IPv4. With so few IPv4 addresses remaining, the NRO is urging all Internet stakeholders to take immediate action by planning for the necessary investments required to deploy IPv6.

The NRO, alongside each individual RIR, has actively promoted IPv6 deployment for several years through grassroots outreach, speaking engagements, conferences and media outreach. To date, their combined efforts have yielded positive results in the call to action for the adoption of IPv6.

Given the less than 10 percent milestone, the NRO is continuing its call for Internet stakeholders – including governments, vendors, enterprises, telecoms operators, and end users – to fulfill their roles in IPv6 adoption, specifically encouraging the following actions:

  • The business sector should provide IPv6-capable services and platforms, including web hosting and equipment, ensuring accessibility for IPv6 users.
  • Software and hardware vendors should implement IPv6 support in their products to guarantee they are available at production standard when needed.
  • Governments should lead the way by making their own content and services available over IPv6 and encouraging IPv6 deployment efforts in their countries. IPv6 requirements in government procurement policies are critical at this time.
  • Civil society, including organizations and end users, should request that all services they receive from their ISPs and vendors are IPv6-ready, to build demand and ensure competitive availability of IPv6 services in coming years.

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