Promote Consumer and Business User Choice in Domain Names Registration
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) announced today that its new inter-registrar domain name transfer policy has gone into effect.
“ICANN’s new transfer policy will provide consumers and businesses with increased ability to move their domain name to the registrar that best meets
their needs, while providing strong protections to prevent unauthorized transfers,” said Dr Twomey, ICANN President & CEO.
The new policy was created through ICANN’s consensus-based, bottom-up policy development process and approved unanimously by both ICANN’s Generic
Names Supporting Organization (GNSO) and its Board of Directors. Similar to how telephone number portability works in many countries,
enhanced domain name portability will provide for greater consumer and business choice, enabling domain name registrants to select the registrar that
offers the best services and price. The new policy also simplifies and standardizes the process to prevent abuses and provide clearer user
information about the transfer process and options. The policy was originally announced on July 12, 2004.
Central to the new policy and its efforts to provide strong protections against unauthorized transfers and to facilitate choice in domain name
registration, all registrars are now required to use a clear standardized form of authorization that provides for the express consent of the domain name
registrant prior to the initiation of any transfer.
Additional policy elements include the following (please refer to the full policy available at http://www.icann.org/transfers/ for details):
– Requiring registrars to verify the identity of the registrant or dministrative contact requesting the transfer by one of a number
of approved methods to deter fraud;
– Preserving the ability of registrants to “lock” their domains so they may not be transferred from the registrar, but requiring
registrars to provide a readily accessible way for registrants to have their current registrar remove this lock at their request;
– Enabling registrants to transfer their domain names without having to “double-confirm” the transfer once the transfer has been reliably
authenticated per the new policy; and
– Providing a robust dispute resolution process for resolving disputes between registrars, including registries implementing a “transfer
undo” functionality to provide for efficiently reversing any transfer initiated in violation of the policy.
Through the new transfer policy implemented today, ICANN expects to expand the domain name user benefits of increased generic top level domain (gTLD)
name market competition, including the separation of the registry and registrar functions, that have decreased domain name costs for consumers and
businesses by up to 80 percent.
A recent report by the OECD concluded that ‘ICANN’s reform of the market structure for the registration of generic top level domain names has been very
successful. The division between registry and registrar functions has created a competitive market that has lowered prices and encouraged innovation. The
initial experience with competition at the registry level, in association with a successful process to introduce new gTLDs, has also shown positive results.’
Domain name users also have benefited from ICANN’s implementation of a Redemption Grace Period Service that provides a 30-day period for domain name
holders to reclaim their names if deleted unintentionally from a registry database. Through ICANN’s Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy
(UDRP), established in 1999, more than 10,000 domain name disputes also have been efficiently and cost effectively resolved.