[council] GAC WHOIS Principles
- To: "GNSO Council" <council@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Subject: [council] GAC WHOIS Principles
- From: "Bruce Tonkin" <Bruce.Tonkin@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Thu, 29 Mar 2007 21:23:28 +1000
- Cc: <gnso-dow123@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Sender: owner-council@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx
- Thread-index: Acdx9KyHymhU1DtaTJOc/enfBG0UHw==
- Thread-topic: GAC WHOIS Principles
The GAC Communiqué is available at:
With respect to WHOIS, the main communiqué stated:
"The GAC adopted a set of Principles Regarding Generic Top Level Domain (gTLD)
WHOIS Services (Annex A).
The GAC held a joint session with the GNSO Council regarding the recently
completed WHOIS Task Force Final Report. The GAC noted that the
recommendations included in the Report indicate a significant division of views
regarding the appropriate approach to WHOIS services, and urges the GNSO
Council to continue its efforts to develop consensus-based proposals. In this
regard, having completed the Principles, the GAC is committed to continuing
consultations on the WHOIS issue, including providing additional advice as
appropriate, prior to the further consideration of any recommendations by the
See below .
GAC PRINCIPLES REGARDING gTLD WHOIS SERVICES
Presented by the Governmental Advisory Committee
March 28, 2007
1.1 The purpose of this document is to identify a set of general public policy
issues and to propose principles related to generic top level domain (gTLD)
WHOIS services, in line with the recommendations of the Tunis Agenda of the
World Summit on the Information Society in November, 2005.
1.2 These principles are intended to guide the work within ICANN and to inform
the ICANN Board of the consensus views of the GAC regarding the range of public
policy issues associated with WHOIS services.
Public Policy Aspects of WHOIS Data
2.1 The GAC recognizes that the original function of the gTLD WHOIS service is
to provide a look up service to Internet users. As the Internet has evolved,
WHOIS data is now used in support of a number of other legitimate activities,
1. Supporting the security and stability of the Internet by providing
contact points for network operators and administrators, including ISPs, and
certified computer incident response teams;
2. Allowing users to determine the availability of domain names;
3. Assisting law enforcement authorities in investigations, in enforcing
national and international laws, including, for example, countering
terrorism-related criminal offences and in supporting international cooperation
procedures. In some countries, specialized non governmental entities may be
involved in this work;
4. Assisting in combating against abusive uses of ICTs, such as illegal
and other acts motivated by racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia, and
related intolerance, hatred, violence, all forms of child abuse, including
paedophilia and child pornography, and trafficking in, and exploitation of,
5. Facilitating enquiries and subsequent steps to conduct trademark
clearances and to help counter intellectual property infringement, misuse and
theft in accordance with applicable national laws and international treaties;
6. Contributing to user confidence in the Internet as a reliable and
efficient means of information and communication and as an important tool for
promoting digital inclusion, e-commerce and other legitimate uses by helping
users identify persons or entities responsible for content and services online;
7. Assisting businesses, other organizations and users in combating fraud,
complying with relevant laws, and safeguarding the interests of the public.
2.2 The GAC recognizes that there are also legitimate concerns about:
1. the misuse of WHOIS data, and
2. conflicts with national laws and regulations, in particular applicable
privacy and data protection laws.
Principles Applicable to WHOIS Services
3.1 The definition, purpose, and operation of gTLD WHOIS services should
reflect and respect the different interests and concerns outlined in Section 2
3.2. gTLD WHOIS services must comply with applicable national laws and
3.3 gTLD WHOIS services should provide sufficient and accurate data about
domain name registrations and registrants subject to national safeguards for
individuals' privacy in a manner that:
1. Supports the stability, reliability, security, and global
interoperability of the Internet, from both a technical and public trust
2. Facilitates continuous, timely and world-wide access.
3.4 Ongoing collaboration among all relevant stakeholders who are users of,
affected by, or responsible for, maintaining WHOIS data and services is
essential to the effective implementation of these principles.
Recommendations for Action
4.1 Consistent with the above principles, stakeholders should work to improve
the accuracy of WHOIS data, and in particular, to reduce the incidence of
deliberately false WHOIS data.
4.2 The ICANN community, working with other stakeholders, should gather
information on gTLD domain name registrations and registrants and how WHOIS
data is used and misused. This information should be publicized and used to
inform future debate on this issue.