Study Suggestion Number 8
Submitted By: [Redacted for privacy reasons] Topic: The participation of certain registrars in spam abuse through the registrar's toleration of falsified whois records, as demonstrated by their refusal to take action on whois data problem reports. Hypothesis: -Falsified whois records are often associated with spammers -Certain registrars fail to enforce whois accuracy -These registrars benefit financially by harbouring spammers -Registrars appear to face no consequences for unethical handling of whois inaccuracy How the hypothesis could be falsified: -Statistical analysis of whois problem reports and registrar responses Utility: Registrars which chronically violate ICANN policies in regards to whois accuracy could have their accreditation revoked. Type of Study Needed: Examination of existing whois reports, and comparison with other domains in the registry Data that needs to be collected: -Comparison of whois records with standard postal/telephone formats (ex. is a recorded address a valid combination of state, zip, country; is telephone prefix valid for country - these could be automated). Population to be surveyed: Sampling of domains from certain registrars; samples from domains registered within a given period of time. Sample Size: If validity testing is automated, then a large number of domain records could be tested for validity ( >100) Type of Analysis: Statistical analysis, and examination of whois records and WDPR responses to judge whether systematic abuse of the whois registry is being tolerated by any registrars.