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ICANN takes down gTLD apps after revealing applicants’ home addresses

Kevin Murphy, June 14, 2012, 22:39:55 (UTC), Domain Policy

ICANN has temporarily blocked access to its newly revealed new gTLD applications after accidentally publishing the home addresses of many applicants.

Some applicants noticed today that the personal contact information of their named primary and secondary contacts had been published during yesterday’s Big Reveal.

In many cases this included these employees’ home addresses, despite the fact that the Applicant Guidebook specifically states that this information would not be published.

After being notified of the snafu by DI, ICANN confirmed that the addresses were published by mistake.

It’s taken down all the applications and will republish them later with the private data removed.

“This was an oversight and the files have been pulled down,” ICANN’s manager of gTLD communications Michele Jourdan said. “We are working on bringing them back up again without this information.”

It’s another big data leakage embarrassment for ICANN, following the recent outage caused by the TLD Application System bug.

It’s not likely to win ICANN any friends in the dot-brand community, where ICANN’s demands for background information on applicants’ directors caused huge procedural problems for many companies.

For applicants for controversial gTLDs, the revelation of this private data may carry its own set of risks.

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Comments (21)

  1. Mike says:

    Just another oversight…

  2. John Smith says:

    Glitchy glitchy glitches…

  3. So, ICANN, being outside the jurisdiction of the European Union, will not have to answer for this.

    But a European company that did this would suffer fines from the European Data Protection Commissioners.

    Perhaps the Art. 29 people and other EU bodies might care to comment on this?

  4. Rubens Kuhl says:

    The leakage was only of the application contacts (myself included), not the directors addresses.

    We’ve opened a customer service case on this June 13 19:39 UTC, direct-messaged their new gTLD Twitter account, but it took them 24 hours, or the potential media exposure, to fix it.

    • Kevin Murphy says:

      That’s true, but in some confirmed cases the contacts and the officers/directors were the same people.

      • Rubens Kuhl says:

        That’s our case as well. We had two sets of contacts, one of them had one officer/director as secondary contact.

  5. Michele says:

    At least one applicant was spammed by two separate companies.

    In one case they were offered backend services (bit late?) and in the other “digital archery” services

    • Rubens Kuhl says:

      We have been spammed by a backend service provider, a digital archery provider, a gTLD conference and a premium domains strategist/pool provider. All of them pretty known in the ICANN community.

  6. Louise says:

    You don’t get, the crime syndicate has infiltrated ICANN. ICANN doesn’t care that it exposed personal data of gTLD applicants.

  7. Beachie says:

    ICANN seem to make a lot of mistakes. It’s a good job that they don’t run anything important.

  8. Vaxpar says:

    Much ado about nothing.

  9. John Berryhill says:

    I am discounting my rate for gTLD privacy registration services.

  10. Sedari says:

    Let’s hope that the journalists in the room at the Reveal Day in London don’t use this data as well to “pap” applicants as they are working on resolving contention!

    Really shabby performance from ICANN, yet again, which does it no favours in instilling confidence in a huge new industry filled with well known, well resourced and easily riled, but so far extremely patient, heavy hitters.

  11. Tony Smith says:

    “It’s not likely to win ICANN any friends in the dot-brand community, where ICANN’s demands for background information on applicants’ directors caused huge procedural problems for many companies.”

    Understatement of the year.

    Make no mistake, this breach will be perceived by brands to be a much bigger issue than the TAS breach. CEOs of Fortune 500 companies don’t like it when their home address is leaked. They get ‘angry’.

    • Tony Smith says:

      Actually looking back on that, “CEOs” is an overreach on my part. “Executives” is more appropriate. But the result is still the same. Very unhappy big brands.

    • John Berryhill says:

      These are the same people who, through their representatives in ICANN, have been angry about individual domain registrants not wanting to divulge their personal information when they register domain names. At what level of wealth does one gain these special rights to which other humans are clearly not entitled?

  12. Volker says:

    I don’t see what the problem is. Those people who had their address listed could just move if they are concerned about this leak.

  13. suckers says:

    Yeah if I were one of the 1,930 biggest suckers in the world I wouldn’t want my name released either. Not exactly something to be proud of.

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