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Contractual Compliance Monthly Update | September 2012

Table of Contents 1

Audit Program Update

Audit Outreach Sessions for Registrars and Registries

In an effort to increase transparency, collaboration and knowledge, ICANN held three Audit Outreach Sessions for Registrars and Registries about the audit program; this effort allowed for focused discussion as well as direct interactions. Click here for the link to the outreach page:

Approval to Proceed with the Three-Year Audit Program

The Board Finance Committee (BFC) recommended, and the Board of Directors authorized "the President and CEO, or his designees, to negotiate for and enter into a contract with an appropriate Audit Program service provider, and make all required disbursements called for under that contract …" (see This decision further emphasizes ICANN's commitment to ensuring a comprehensive and successful contractual compliance function.

Please visit ICANN's re-designed Contractual Compliance Audit Site, for current and future audit activities at:

Registrar Update

Improving Whois Inaccuracy Complaints Handling

Application enhancements were completed to the Whois Data Problem Reporting System on 15 September 2012. The enhancements were to:

  1. Align with the current contractual compliance process by reducing the notification process steps from five to three, thus shortening time to resolution; and
  2. Improve processing quality and effort by reviewing all tickets prior to sending to registrars.

ICANN would like to thank the registrars that volunteered to test the enhanced system and process. Great team work!

Outreach and Education to Improve Quality of Submitted Whois Inaccuracy Reports

Between 1 October 2011 and 30 September 2012, ICANN received 33,190 Whois inaccuracy reports. Based on the analysis, about 30 percent of these are invalid or improper. In an effort to reduce the large volume of improper reports, ICANN is reaching out to a number of individuals to inform them of the "improper or invalid" reason their ticket was closed. This effort should improve the accuracy of the data and the turn-around time of reports.

Transfer Policy Outreach Webinar on 25 September 2012

As part of an on-going outreach effort, ICANN conducted a webinar in Mandarin on the current Inter-Registrar Transfer Policy and Contractual Compliance process for registrars in China on 25 September 2012. The webinar was intended to promote better awareness and improve registrar compliance. Over 40 representatives from 27 registrars attended. Currently, there are 33 ICANN-accredited registrars in China. Click here for the link to the outreach page:

General Update on Complaints Handling and Enforcement Summary

UDRP Procedural Issues

ICANN received an increased number of reports from the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) service providers alleging that registrars were not responding to verification requests.

In accordance with the current contractual compliance process, the registrars concerned were requested to respond to the UDRP provider and to provide ICANN with relevant registration data and records to demonstrate their compliance with the Registrar Accreditation Agreement or UDRP requirements. If registrars did not respond to ICANN inquiries, escalated compliance actions would follow. As noted in a recent notice of breach issued to a non-compliant registrar  

"…registrars play a key part of the UDRP process and are strongly encouraged to timely cooperate with ICANN-approved dispute resolution providers during the verification process to assist in the efficient resolution of UDRP matters."

Complaints Handling and Enforcement Summary

The chart below shows the volume of complaints, based on the 123-notification process. Please note the chart does not include Whois Inaccuracy complaints.

Complaints per Notification Cycle September 2012

Enforcement Activity for September 2012

Please refer to Contractual Compliance Notices for up-to-date information.

1 This update is provided for information purposes only. Please exercise judgment in using the information contained within this update to make conclusions or business decisions based upon this update.

newsletter-sep12-en.pdf  [895 KB]

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."