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Transfer Policy Implementation Update

ICANN announces the implementation of amendments to the Inter-Registrar Transfer Policy, which is being renamed as the "Transfer Policy." In addition to rules related to inter-registrar transfers, the updated Transfer Policy now sets policy requirements for transfers between registrants. It will also impose new conditions for the expiration of the Form of Authorization used by registrars in inter-registrar transfers.

The amended Transfer Policy is applicable to all gTLD names and ICANN-accredited registrars. These new requirements will take effect and will be enforced by ICANN beginning on 1 August 2016.

The GNSO Council unanimously voted to approve the consensus policy recommendations of the IRTP Working Group C on 17 October 2012. The ICANN Board adopted the recommendations of the GNSO Council on 20 December 2012. ICANN worked in consultation with the GNSO Implementation Review Team, which was formed as directed by the GNSO Council to work with ICANN, to ensure that the resultant implementation fulfills the intentions of the approved policy recommendations. The draft policy went through public comment on 30 March 2015.

The new policy requirements include:

  1. "Change of Registrant" is now a defined term, meaning a material change to the registrant's name, organization or email address, or the administrative contact's email address if there is no registrant email address.
  2. Registrars must use a secure mechanism to confirm that both the prior registrant and new registrant have consented to any Change of Registrant.
  3. Registrars must notify the prior registrant and new registrant of a Change of Registrant and provide the notice described in the policy which includes, for example, an explanation of the request, information on how to approve of cancel the change of registrant, etc.
  4. Registrars must process the Change of Registrant within one (1) day of receiving the confirmation of Change of Registrant from the prior registrant and the new registrant.
  5. Registrars must impose a 60-day inter-registrar transfer lock following a Change of Registrant but registrars may allow registered name holders to opt out of the lock prior to any Change of Registrant request.
  6. The Form of Authorization used by gaining registrars, labeled "Initial Authorization for Registrar Transfer" shall expire under the following circumstances:
    1. A period of 60 days has passed since the FOA was sent by the gaining registrar (unless the registrar allows automatic renewal of FOAs)
    2. The domain name expires before the transfer is completed.
    3. A Change of Registrant is completed.
    4. The inter-registrar transfer is completed.

A redline version of the policy showing changes can be found here: [PDF, 243 KB]

An updated version of the Transfer Policy can be found here:

Questions about this policy change may be directed to

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Internationalized Domain Name ,IDN,"IDNs are domain names that include characters used in the local representation of languages that are not written with the twenty-six letters of the basic Latin alphabet ""a-z"". An IDN can contain Latin letters with diacritical marks, as required by many European languages, or may consist of characters from non-Latin scripts such as Arabic or Chinese. Many languages also use other types of digits than the European ""0-9"". The basic Latin alphabet together with the European-Arabic digits are, for the purpose of domain names, termed ""ASCII characters"" (ASCII = American Standard Code for Information Interchange). These are also included in the broader range of ""Unicode characters"" that provides the basis for IDNs. The ""hostname rule"" requires that all domain names of the type under consideration here are stored in the DNS using only the ASCII characters listed above, with the one further addition of the hyphen ""-"". The Unicode form of an IDN therefore requires special encoding before it is entered into the DNS. The following terminology is used when distinguishing between these forms: A domain name consists of a series of ""labels"" (separated by ""dots""). The ASCII form of an IDN label is termed an ""A-label"". All operations defined in the DNS protocol use A-labels exclusively. The Unicode form, which a user expects to be displayed, is termed a ""U-label"". The difference may be illustrated with the Hindi word for ""test"" — परीका — appearing here as a U-label would (in the Devanagari script). A special form of ""ASCII compatible encoding"" (abbreviated ACE) is applied to this to produce the corresponding A-label: xn--11b5bs1di. A domain name that only includes ASCII letters, digits, and hyphens is termed an ""LDH label"". Although the definitions of A-labels and LDH-labels overlap, a name consisting exclusively of LDH labels, such as"""" is not an IDN."