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CoCCA to charge trademark owners for Whois access

Kevin Murphy, April 14, 2018, 12:48:25 (UTC), Domain Registries

CoCCA has become the first domain registry to publicly announce that it will charge trademark owners for access to Whois records.

The company said it plans to release an updated version of its software and registry service, containing a range of features for ensuring General Data Protection Regulation compliance, on April 20.

The public Whois records of affected TLDs will have the name, email, phone and physical address of the registrant omitted, but only if the registrant is an EU resident or uses an EU-based registrar or reseller.

There will be ways to opt-out of this, for registrants who want their information public.

The changes will come into effect first at .af, .cx, .gs, .gy, .ht, .hn, .ki, .kn, .sb, .tl, .kn, .ms and .nf, CoCCA said.

But the registry runs almost 40 gTLDs on its shared infrastructure and has almost 20 more running its software. They’re all pretty small zones, mostly ccTLDs.

CoCCA said that it will give access to private data to law enforcement and members of the Secure Domain Foundation, a DNS reputation service provider.

But trademark owners will get hit in the wallet if they want the same privileges. CoCCA said:

intellectual property owners or other entities who have a legitimate interest in redacted data will be able to order historical abstracts online for a nominal fee (provided they sign an attestation).

While the affected TLDs are probably small enough that the IP lobby won’t be overly concerned today, if CoCCA’s policy becomes more widespread in the industry — which it well could — expect an outcry.

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Comments (4)

  1. Steve Gobin says:

    It was unfortunately something to expect.
    I would like to know the amount of the fee COCCA is planning to charge as well as if the fee is only charged in case of a successful transmission request or even when a request is rejected.

    • Garth Miller says:

      The fee for a historical abstract ( a pdf that has the entire history of the domain ) will be $3. This will be available for domains with and without redacted data. If the domain has redacted data the requestor will have tick a few boxes indicating that they have a legitimate interest in the data as defined by the GDPR. Its is intended to be a fully automated system. If the requestor is not willing to sign an online attestation the order will not be filled, no funds will be collected no date will be provided.

      Members of the Secure Domain Foundation and Law enforcement will have access to zone files and un-redacted data. If a member of the IP community wants zones or can satisfy the SDF that their interest is legitimate the data is available from SDF as well.

      If a member of the IP community wants zone file access and does not want to join the SDF, they will be able to purchase it online for $88 year per TLD. This cost – recovery fee simply covers the labour and developer time to setup zone file access. Suggestions welcome.

  2. Just noticed that Cocca has a branch in France.

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