Many registrars have gotten complacent about reforming the Whois-Privacy relationship. After all, they can sell additional privacy protection to their subscribers for an extra $5-10. Seems like a perfect "market oriented" interim solution, as the so-called "bottom up" policy development process of ICANN figures out how to provide tiered access.
Not so fast. The US Government is making it clear that when the bottom up policy development process starts going in a direction it has already decided it doesn't want, then measures will be taken. And as evidence, Enom has sent a message out to its resellers that .US has made a dramatic change in their policy.
"The United States Department of Commerce's National Telecommunications and Information Administration ("NTIA") has recently completed its review of "proxy" or anonymous domain registration services by .us Accredited Registrars. At the conclusion of this review, NTIA directed NeuStar to phase out the offering of such services by Registrars or by any of its partners or resellers and to ensure that complete and accurate WHOIS data is provided for any existing registrations in .us."
"Although we disagree with this policy, [ERnom continues] we will comply and will require our resellers and sub-resellers to make the necessary changes. Therefore, we will prohibit the offering of eNom's ID Protect or similar services to .US registrations. This policy takes effect immediately and ONLY applies to .US registrations.
The service will continue to be provided for existing .US ID protect customers until their ID protect expiration date or January 26, 2006, whichever comes first."
This development is important not only for its implications for Whois policy, but also for its implications for ICANN's autonomy and its relationship to the US Government - something people in WSIS and WGIG ought to be taking a close look at. More about that later.
|Cybersquatting||Policy & Regulation|
|DNS Security||Registry Services|
|IP Addressing||White Space|
Minds + Machines