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Cops say new gTLDs shouldn’t launch without a Big Brother RAA

Kevin Murphy, April 7, 2013, 23:14:11 (UTC), Domain Registrars

Law enforcement agencies are not happy with the proposed 2013 Registrar Accreditation Agreement, saying it doesn’t go far enough to help them catch online bad guys.

Europol and the FBI told ICANN’s Governmental Advisory Committee yesterday that people need to have their full identities verified before they’re allowed to register domain names.

They added that new gTLDs shouldn’t be allowed to launch until a tougher RAA is agreed to and signed by registrars.

The draft 2013 RAA would force registrars to validate their customers’ email addresses or phone numbers after selling them a domain, but law enforcement thinks this is not enough.

“We need a bit more in this area,” Troels Oerting, head of Europol’s European Cybercrime Centre, told the GAC during a Sunday session. “We need a bit more to be verified in addition to the phone or email.”

“It’s very, very important that we are able to identify perpetrators able, to identify the originators, and it’s not enough that you just put in the email or phone,” he said.

He added that there should also be re-verification procedures and ongoing compliance monitoring from ICANN, and said that only registrars signing the 2013 RAA should be allowed to sell new gTLD domains.

Europol has sent a letter to ICANN (not yet published, it seems) outlining four areas it wants to see the RAA “improved”, Oerting said.

Given that many GAC members, including the US, seem to support this position, it’s yet another threat to ICANN’s new gTLD launch timetable, not to mention privacy and anonymous speech in general.

The law enforcement recommendations are not new, of course. They’ve been in play and GAC-endorsed for many years, but were watered down during ICANN’s RAA talks with registrars.

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Comments (5)

  1. Rubens Kuhl says:

    So there will be new bad actors that will only start their crime careers after the new gTLDs launch and will then only use new gTLDs.

    Ok.

  2. Volker says:

    Not going to happen!

  3. James says:

    The Draft 2013 RAA is miles ahead of the status quo. Clearly, the takeaway for ICANN is that LEA will never be satisfied with any level of concessions, and will always want more.

    • Volker Greimann says:

      Indeed. It is be offered a hand, demand the arm with them. First they wanted some verifiable leads, now the full arm and tomorrow…

  4. Ridiculous. Let’s make everybody a suspect by default and increase cost in order to catch a few more criminals. No thank you.

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