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RE: [alac] ALERT: What is WHOIS really fpr

  • To: bfausett@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx, johnl@xxxxxxxx, annette.muehlberg@xxxxxx
  • Subject: RE: [alac] ALERT: What is WHOIS really fpr
  • From: "Roberto Gaetano" <alac_liaison@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 23 Jun 2006 11:00:20 +0000

I fully agree with Bret, the solution is not a plain YES or NO, is rather on how we put a reasonable system in place that takes into account all stakeholders.

Quite a while ago, I believe it was in Tunis, but I might be wrong, I made the example of car licence plates. The file is accessible for law enforcement and any other legal reasons, but data is not publicly available.

Another item I raised in the same meeting was who is benefitting and who is paying. Intellectual Property lawyers would like to use the Whois to check IP violations, but the registrars or registry, depending on the model, has to offer this service for free. It is like if a large multinational corporation would force all national car licence plates registries to offer free access to the corporation to search whether any of the local affiliates own cars.

ICANN BoD Liaison

From: "Bret Fausett" <bfausett@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: "'John M Levine'" <johnl@xxxxxxxx>, "'Annette Muehlberg'" <annette.muehlberg@xxxxxx>
CC: "'ALAC'" <alac@xxxxxxxxx>
Subject: RE: [alac] ALERT: What is WHOIS really fpr
Date: Thu, 22 Jun 2006 22:59:10 -0700

> I can tell you from personal experience that WHOIS
> info, even in its current rather imperfect form, is very
> useful when tracking them down.

You're right that whois has some practical uses in law enforcement, etc. At
the same time, the required public disclosure of identity information also
has some privacy implications. At the end of the day, we're still going to
have to make a judgment call about whether the benefits of public whois data
outweigh the privacy consequences.

The proposal I like is the "tiered access" model. The concept is that
personal data is unavailable to the general public via simple whois queries
but available to law enforcement, ISPs, lawyers, etc. who sign up for
special access. Another idea I like is a system that would allow the
registrant to review his/her own whois data to see who has accessed the
'second-tiered' information. This seems like a decent compromise, or at
least as close to a middle ground as we're likely to see.


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