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Contractual Compliance Monthly Update | March 2012


This newsletter is to inform readers and encourage community dialogue regarding ICANN's Contractual Compliance program.

In This Issue

  1. Compliance Team Gains Four
  2. Suspension Commences for ICANN-Accredited Registrar
  3. More than 90% of Registrars Responded to Whois Data Reminder Policy Audit
  4. Registrar and Registry Self-Assessment Questionnaire Pilots

Compliance Team Gains Four

Since the ICANN 42 Public Meeting in Dakar, the Contractual Compliance department has added four team members. The 12-person team collectively speaks seven languages: Arabic, English, French, Hindi, Mandarin, Spanish and Urdu. The new staff members fill key roles in Performance Measurement and Reporting, Risk and Audit Management and Compliance Complaint Analyst and Manager.

Suspension Commences 8 March 2012 for ICANN Accredited Registrar

On 16 February 2012 ICANN issued a 30-day suspension [PDF, 310 KB] to registrar, Alantron Bilişim Ltd, for failure to maintain adequate domain registration records and to make those records available for inspection by ICANN.

The suspension effectively means the ICANN-accredited registrar cannot create any new domain names, nor accept inbound transfers of any registered domain names during the suspension period. Alantron has until 28 March 2012 to cure these breaches to have the suspension lifted. Failure to cure these breaches in a timely manner will result in termination of Alantron’s RAA.

More than 90% of Registrars Respond to Whois Data Reminder Policy Audit

The 2011 Whois Data Reminder Policy Audit was launched on 26 January 2012. Preliminary audit results show that 846 out of 920 registrars that are under the 2009 RAA, or 91%, responded to the audit. Failure to respond to an ICANN audit request may amount to a breach of the 2009 RAA. Contractual Compliance is following up with those registrars that did not respond, in accordance with our process and the RAA.

Registrar and Registry Self-Assessment Questionnaire Pilots

The Registrar RAA self-assessment audit questionnaire pilot was completed on 20 February 2012. The Registry self-assessment questionnaire pilot was launched on 24 February 2012. The pilots are intended to evaluate the tools, the clarity and appropriateness of the questions, ease of data collection, time required for compliance assessment and reporting of results. Contractual Compliance will be evaluating the results and feedback received from participating registrars and registries to determine the formal launch dates of these new initiatives.

Domain Name System
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."