FAQs - Registrar Data Escrow Agent Change
On 20 March 2023 ICANN org opened a Request for Proposal to identify one or more ICANN-designated registrar data escrow agent(s) (DEA) qualified to provide escrow services to ICANN-accredited registrars. ICANN org announced in July 2023 that DENIC Services GmbH & Co. KG (DENIC) was selected as the sole ICANN-designated registrar DEA. DENIC is headquartered in Darmstadt, Germany and has been an ICANN-designated registrar DEA since 2018. DENIC expanded its technical operations to North America and is well positioned to scale and service ICANN's registrar base globally, giving registrars the option to have their data stored in Europe or North America.
ICANN org has developed a list of frequently asked questions (FAQs) for registrars to refer to throughout the transition process. Further information about the transition process can be found here.
- General Registrar Data Escrow Questions
- Registrars Currently Depositing with NCC Group
- Registrars Transitioning to DENIC
- Registrars Currently Depositing with DENIC
- Registrars Currently Depositing with Another ICANN-approved DEA
General Registrar Data Escrow Questions
What is the difference between an ICANN-designated registrar data escrow agent and an ICANN-approved registrar data escrow agent?
ICANN-accredited registrars have the option to escrow their registration data with either the ICANN-designated registrar DEA or any of the ICANN-approved registrar DEAs. ICANN org only covers the costs associated with the ICANN-designated registrar DEA. Registrars may choose to use an ICANN-approved registrar DEA at their own expense. For more information about these options visit the Registrar Data Escrow Program webpage.
Why did ICANN org solicit proposals for an ICANN-designated registrar data escrow agent?
ICANN org set out to identify one or more ICANN-designated registrar DEAs in accordance with procurement best practices to ensure services are sourced with the correct specifications, at the appropriate level of quality, and for appropriate value. Periodically, ICANN org will request proposals for ICANN-designated registrar DEA(s) and as industry needs may warrant.
Do I have to change registrar data escrow agents?
It depends. If you are currently depositing with NCC Group Software Resilience (NA) LLC (NCC Group), you will need to transition to another registrar DEA. You may choose to execute a new agreement with DENIC, in which case ICANN will cover all data escrow deposit fees. Alternatively, you may choose an ICANN-approved registrar DEA at your own expense.
How can I change registrar data escrow agents?
Please follow the Registrar Data Escrow Agent Change process.
Can I use more than one registrar data escrow agent?
No. Registrars can only use one DEA.
Registrars Currently Depositing with NCC Group
Can I continue to use NCC Group?
No. NCC Group will no longer be an ICANN-designated registrar DEA as of 1 November 2024. Registrars currently using NCC Group will need to transition to DENIC or one of the ICANN-approved registrar DEAs before the registrar's data escrow agreement renewal date with NCC Group. This date is unique for each registrar.
Note: this change is specific to registrar data escrow services, and not registry data escrow services.
When will ICANN notify me to change DEAs?
Registrars will receive notice from ICANN org approximately 120 days in advance to transition from NCC Group to DENIC or to an alternative ICANN-approved registrar DEA. The deadline to transition for each registrar will coincide with the anniversary of the original effective date of the registrar's existing agreement with NCC Group. Registrars should submit a completed DEA change request form to ICANN org no later than 75 days before their data escrow agreement renewal date.
Are there any alternatives to DENIC?
While DENIC was selected as the only ICANN-designated registrar DEA, registrars have the option to engage with an ICANN-approved registrar DEA at their own expense. A list of ICANN-approved registrar DEAs can be found here.
How do I find the date by which I must transition away from NCC Group?
ICANN org will notify registrars 120 days in advance of their impending data escrow agreement anniversary date with NCC Group. You may also send a general inquiry with any questions to firstname.lastname@example.org. Registrars should submit a completed DEA change request form to ICANN org no later than 75 days before their data escrow agreement renewal date.
What happens if I do not take action by my contract renewal date with NCC Group?
If a registrar takes no action and does not respond to ICANN org's outreach efforts to initiate a registrar DEA change, ICANN org will terminate the data escrow agreement by the registrar's data escrow agreement renewal date with NCC Group. The registrar will then be referred to ICANN Contractual Compliance. ICANN org strongly encourages registrars not to avoid or delay action and invites you to respond to ICANN org's notifications with any questions you may have.
What happens if I need more time or can't transition by the deadline?
ICANN org understands some registrars may need additional time to transition. Requests to extend a registrar's transition period will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Registrars may communicate extension requests or questions by responding to the transition notification sent by ICANN org. Please note that an extension request does not guarantee approval and registrars should continue to work toward transitioning by their NCC Group renewal date.
Registrars Transitioning to DENIC
What actions do I need to take to transition to DENIC?
Registrars should first review the Data Escrow Agent Transition Resources and follow the steps as described. Registrars transitioning to DENIC will ultimately follow the Registrar Data Escrow Change process and must execute a new DENIC registrar data escrow agreement as part of those steps. This includes an optional data processing agreement between the registrar and DENIC which may be entered into for data protection compliance purposes. When onboarding with DENIC, registrars will be given a choice to have their deposit data stored in data centers in either North America or Europe. Registrars must make a valid deposit with DENIC before the transition can be completed. ICANN org encourages action to be taken as soon as possible.
Are there any resources available to prepare for the transition to DENIC?
ICANN org has developed the Data Escrow Agent Transition Resources with additional details to assist registrars in planning for a smooth transition process.
Furthermore, DENIC has put a dedicated support team in place to assist registrars with the transition, and offers streamlined onboarding via its onboarding support and an API for bulk onboarding of registrar groups and registrars using the same back-end provider. DENIC will also hold webinars. Registration information and additional information will be made available here.
Can a registrar transition to DENIC earlier and before receiving notice?
Yes. DENIC will attempt to accommodate early onboarding requests if a registrar would like to transition prior to its scheduled time frame. For those registrars wishing to begin the process prior to the initial notification, please follow the instructions on the Registrar Data Escrow Agent Change webpage.
Where can I find the new data escrow agreement that I need to sign?
Data escrow agreement templates, including the new DENIC data escrow agreement template, can be found on the Registrar Data Escrow Program webpage.
How can I verify if my deposits with DENIC will be successful?
Once a registrar signs the data escrow agreement with DENIC, it will receive additional documentation to successfully onboard. In addition, DENIC will maintain a testing environment to help registrars verify connection to their system.
DENIC's RDE platform is fully integrated with ICANN's Registration Reporting Interfaces (RRI) system in accordance with the Registrar Data Escrow Specifications. As a result, some registrars may be required to make adjustments to their data escrow deposits to ensure conformance with the Registrar Data Escrow Specifications as per the Registrar Data Escrow Deposit verification process. In addition, registrars transitioning to DENIC will execute a new registrar data escrow agreement that includes a data processing agreement.
Will I have an option regarding the location of data storage?
When onboarding with DENIC, registrars will be given a choice to have their deposit data stored in data centers either in North America or Europe.
My registrar operates several different registrar accreditations. Can I transition all of my registrars at the same time?
DENIC has developed an API for an efficient onboarding process for a portfolio of registrars. Priority will be given to registrars that have received a notification from ICANN, however, every effort will be made to onboard groups of registrars together, depending on onboarding capacity.
My registrar is in the process of acquiring a new registrar accreditation. Are we able to sign a new agreement with NCC Group before we transition the other Affiliated registrars?
No. As of 17 July 2023, NCC Group will no longer enter into new registrar data escrow agreements. Registrar applicants that stated in their application that they planned on using NCC Group as their DEA will be provided a notification by ICANN listing available options.
Registrars Currently Depositing with DENIC
Is any action required at this time for registrars who are already contracted with DENIC?
No action is required for those registrars already depositing with DENIC. However, any registrar depositing with DENIC who would like to execute an optional data processing agreement as an appendix to their existing data escrow agreement should contact the DENIC support team (email@example.com).
Registrars Currently Depositing with Another ICANN-approved DEA (other than DENIC and NCC Group)
Do I need to take any action as a result of the recent announcement of DENIC as the ICANN-designated registrar DEA?
No. If you are happy with your current DEA, you do not need to take any action at this time.