Registrar Comments on Policy and Non-Compliance
Before getting into specifics regarding issues we have had with the new policy, the fact remains that this policy will continue to lack credibility until ICANN reliably and consistently takes action against non-compliant registrars.
We have run into several Registrars who are using a 'local' domain locking status which allows a gaining registrar to successfully initiate a transfer request, but is always returned with a NACK. We believe ICANN needs to clarify the lock status stated in the policy and determine whether or not "lock status" means 'REGISTRAR-LOCK/CLIENT TRANSFER PROHIBITED', or something to be freely interpreted by a Registrar. Using a local lock status does not give a gaining Registrar the ability to notify their customer that their domain is locked, until after a NACK is received. Since a transfer request has been initiated the FOA has already been approved, this loophole allows an already approved FOA/Transfer Request to be denied. Considering one of ICANN's goals is to make transfers less confusing to the end user, this added layer of a "local status", in our opinion, can be viewed as a loophole. If this IS acceptable, it should be clarified by ICANN.
Also, more importantly, on more than one occasion we have dealt with Registrars who have made transfer requests without using a proper FOA. In fact, some of these Registrars are not using an FOA at all. We have also run into Registrars who still think it is ok to review all transfers and NACK them at will. The 5 day auto-ACK policy is simply too risky when dealing with Registrars who are not disciplined for continually violating this policy!
In our opinion, a two stage authentication/FOA would be a proper addition. Again, with a single Admin/Owner contact FOA, the losing registrar is 'assuming' that the gaining Registrar has obtained the proper information. (Not always the case, obviously) It would be in the best interest for consumers and Registrars if the losing registrar was also required to send an FOA to confirm their intent to leave a Registrar. If no express authorization is received by the losing Registrar, the transfer request should be able to be NACK'ed. This eliminates the "shoot now, ask questions later" mentality that is currently present in the new policy.
With the new increase in Registrar's ICANN fees, ICANN should be able to quickly and accurately deal with non-compliant Registrars since more man-power is available. We have yet to see ICANN take action before or after this new policy when blatant proof of breech has been given. What exactly are all of these ICANN fees paying for? Surely not a reasonable policy.
IYD Team 2005 ItsYourDomain.com - ICANN Accredited Domain Registrar 1005 W. Wise Road Schaumburg, IL 60193 http://www.iyd.com