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Board Data and Consumer Protection Working Group Report on Recommendations

7 December 2010

On 5 August 2010 the Board asked the Board Governance Committee to assist in the formation of a Board Data and Consumer Protection Working Group (DCP-WG) to identify issues relating to the use of registry data and where registrant protection might be further explored or proposed policies might be introduced.  The DCP-WG was formally established on 25 September 2010 to address data and consumer protection issues.

The DCP-WG provides this report on its conclusions and recommendations.  The report will be provided to the Board for consideration at its 10 December 2010 meeting in Cartagena, Colombia.

DCP-WG Conclusions and Recommendations

Searchable Whois, Referred to the DCP-WG on 25 September 2010:

Searchable Whois: Refer to the Board Data Consumer Protection Working Group to study issues and provide information to the Board relating to access and privacy to develop recommendations for possible inclusion in the forthcoming version of the applicant guidebook.

DCP-WG Response:

The DCP-WG advises the Board that making searchable whois mandatory is a policy matter that would have to be referred to the GNSO, but we accept it being optional as proposed in current version of the Applicant Guidebook.  We flag that there are consumer and data protection issues that could be raised through a searchable whois system.

DCP-WG Charter Task 1:

Fact Finding: Establishing what consumer protections associated with the collection and use of domain-name related data are currently planned to be included in the proposed new gTLD Registry contract.

DCP-WG Response:

Under the proposed Registry Operator Code of Conduct, at Specification 9 of the Registry Agreement in the current version of the Applicant Guidebook, there are consumer-protection provisions relating to limitations on the use of domain-name related data.  These are currently subject to public comment.

DCP-WG Charter Task 2:

Fact Finding: Reviewing the status of work on determining the domain-name related data collected and the uses to which it is put.

DCP-WG Response:

The DCP-WG has identified that the work mandated by the Board in approving the Council Report to the Board, Policies for Contractual Conditions - Existing Registries (PDP Feb 06) - 2 November 2007, Recommendation 5,1 has not been done.  The DCP-WG recommends that this work be implemented now by staff.

Continuation or Replacement of DCP-WG:

DCP-WG recommends to the Board that the WG be thanked for its work and dissolved.

1Recommendation 5 states: “In order to determine whether there is a need for a new consensus policy on the collection and use of registry data, including traffic data, for purposes other than which is was collected, there is first a need for a properly targeted study by an independent third party on the data collected and the uses to which it is put.”

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