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Data Protection/Privacy Update: Revised Proposed Temporary Specification Published; Webinar Scheduled

14 May 2018
By Göran Marby


I want to share some important updates related to our plans for compliance with the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) following very productive discussions that occurred at the Vancouver Board Workshop. Based on extensive Board input and robust discussions, we published revisions to improve the clarity of the proposed Temporary Specification for gTLD Registration Data. You can view the revised document here [PDF, 153 KB], as well as a redlined version here [PDF, 199 KB]. In addition, we scheduled a community webinar that will be held from 09:15 to10:30 Pacific Daylight Time (16:15-17:30 UTC) on 15 May 2018 to discuss this topic.

As a reminder, the intent of this specification is to establish temporary requirements to enable ICANN org and its gTLD registries and registrars to continue to comply with ICANN contractual requirements and community-developed policies, as well as the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), while maintaining the existing WHOIS system to the greatest extent possible.

I also want to point out that the Board passed a resolution noting their intent to take a decision on the adoption of the Temporary Specification on or about 17 May 2018. As noted in the resolution, the Board intends to use this additional time to confirm that appropriate modifications are incorporated into the Temporary Specification prior to adoption. Cherine Chalaby will be publishing a blog soon with more information on the Board's activities during their Vancouver Workshop.

In parallel, we still hope to receive a response to our letter [PDF, 400 KB] to the Article 29 Working Party that provides us with more clarity and guidance to inform the specification.

I know that this is a busy time for all of us, and I am well-aware of the pressures we are facing given the fast-approaching 25 May deadline for enforcement of the GDPR. That said, I want to take a moment to acknowledge your hard work and contributions on this issue, so thank you. Together we have achieved a lot and it has been truly remarkable to watch the multistakeholder community – a mix of individuals, non-commercial stakeholder groups, industry, governments and technical experts committed to a community-based, consensus-driven, policy-making approach – in action.

We still have more to do, but we're closing in on the finish line. Stay the course and, once again, thank you for your efforts.

As always, I encourage you to visit our Data Protection/Privacy page for the latest updates.


Göran Marby

Göran Marby

Former President & CEO