Thursday, February 24, 2005

ICANN Transfers Report Due Soon

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At the 17 February GNSO Names Council teleconference, ICANN staffer Kurt Pritz, VP of Business Operations, provided a preview of the upcoming Report from ICANN staff on current complaints raised by Internet users and registrants. Kurt reported that after the 3 months of the transfer policy a draft report is being prepared stating the registrant, registrar and
registry experiences.

The focus of the report:

1. Authentification and verification methods - their success
The transfer policy - complaints
- Failure in making transfers because registrars were locking all names and it was difficult to unlock them
- Opportunity of fraud, theft and hijacking of names - one real circumstance and 2 unsubstantiated cases

2. Dispute resolution process
- procedure that was required by the registries in case there was a
dispute whether a transfer should be made or not.

In the first 3 months there was only one instance where it was invoked, instead what appeared was that ICANN staff worked regularly on addressing registrant complaints on the transfer process. Most complaints were that the registrant wanted to transfer and could not because the name was locked.

The purpose behind the dispute resolution process and the fee associated with it was that the fees would inflict some amount of pain for those not complying with the transfer process and it was a self policing mechanism. The fact that ICANN staff was doing the dispute resolution
worked around the fee. A topic to be addressed at a later stage to examine whether the Dispute resolution process could be made more affective.

3. Undo mechanism
The registries were required to implement an undo mechanism to assure that unauthorized transfers could be reversed. This appeared to be effective, the only complaints were about timeliness. and this would be the subject of further study.

Statistics

Over half complaints relate to making transfers easier to make.
Over a third - 40% of the comments to date concern loosing registrars locking domain names so that they cannot be transferred or resellers using their own name as registrant data, or some other form of nacking the transfer.
10% commented that the whole process should be faster.
Less prevalent complaint was the quality of the Whois data especially at the reseller level. A correction to the Whois data would help the process itself.
56% of the comments and most of the phone calls were about speeding up the process.
18% regard altering the form of authorization to make it more effective.

The comments went across the board for example: adding additional lock identifications,
authorization, spam filters
18 % comments said the transfer policy was susceptible to theft.

The report will be released shortly.

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