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MarkMonitor Whois Accuracy Study Comments

  • To: <whois-accuracy-study@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Subject: MarkMonitor Whois Accuracy Study Comments
  • From: Frederick Felman <ffelman@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 14 Apr 2010 11:42:37 -0700

MarkMonitor welcomes the opportunity to comment Draft Report for the Study
of the Accuracy of WHOIS Registrant Contact Information by NORC ­ 17 January
2010. (NORC).  In addition to supporting the comments submitted by the
Intellectual Property Constituency (IPC) we hereby submit the following
1)   The level of inaccuracy documented in the NORC report exposes a
significant problem that requires the attention of the entire ICANN
community -- not only for the danger this poses to the Internet community
but also for the trouble it causes those entrusted to protect it. The fact
that 23% of the studied data has been shown to be fully accurate comes as no
surprise to brand rights holders. Going forward however we believe that the
Internet community should look to possible solutions to address this ongoing
2)   In order to allow the Internet community to better understand the
underlying causes, assign responsibility and to enable swift action, ICANN
should also publish cross-tabulations of the data by registry and registrar
or expand the study to allow for cross tabulation by registry and registrar.
This is critical data that will allow the Internet community to pinpoint the
source or sources of the problem and give more data to speed resolution.
3)   The data presented in the NORC report confirms a long held belief in
the intellectual property community; inaccurate WHOIS issues are of a
significant magnitude with a potential deleterious effect on the ability of
law enforcement to protect consumers.  We hope that this report serves as a
wake call to us all and we are able to take quick action to not only improve
the accuracy of WHOIS data in order to effect compliance with the ICANN
Registrars Accreditation Agreement (RAA), but also to protect consumers and
improve the safety and stability of the Internet both within the existing
namespace and the proposed expansion via the new gTLD program.
4)   Lastly, in a submission to ICANN by law enforcement
185109-0-21002) suggesting changes to the Registrars Accreditation Agreement
(RAA) there are several instructive passages that could help registrars more
easily ensure the accuracy of data.  One very practical recommendation is
employing an automated system that validates phone numbers like the system
already employed by Google for validating AdSense users.
Respectfully submitted,
Frederick Felman

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