12/03/2015

Nominet consult on .uk WHOIS

Nominet who are the registry for the .uk domain are holding a consultation on what data the .uk WHOIS database contains.

Currently the .uk WHOIS data is what's considered "thick" will full registrant and other details given out by the WHOIS server i.e.

Result of WHOIS query:
Domain name:
     shinycleanhouse.co.uk
 Registrant:
     Andrew Other
 Registrant type:
     UK Sole Trader
 Registrant's address:
     Minerva House
     Edmund Halley Road
     Oxford
     OX4 4DQ
     United Kingdom
 Data validation:
     Registrant contact details validated by Nominet on 10-
Dec-2012
 Registrar:
     Efficient Registrar Limited [Tag = EFF]
     URL: http://www.efficientregistrar.uk
 Relevant dates:
     Registered on: before Aug-1996
     Expiry date:  06-Dec-2015
     Last updated:  25-Nov-2013
 Registration status:
     Registered until expiry date.
Name servers:
     nom-ns1.nominet.org.uk 213.248.199.16
     nom-ns2.nominet.org.uk 195.66.240.250 2a01:40:1001:37::2
     nom-ns3.nominet.org.uk 213.248.242.70

While many registries only return a "thin" version such as .com i.e.

Domain Name: EXAMPLE.COM
   Registrar: TUCOWS DOMAINS INC.
   Sponsoring Registrar IANA ID: 69
   Whois Server: whois.tucows.com
   Referral URL: http://www.tucowsdomains.com
   Name Server: NS.GBNET.NET
   Name Server: NS0.DEMON.CO.UK
   Name Server: NS1.DEMON.CO.UK
   Name Server: NS1.GBNET.NET
   Status: ok http://www.icann.org/epp#OK
   Updated Date: 08-dec-2014
   Creation Date: 23-dec-1994
   Expiration Date: 22-dec-2015

When the original policy was set in 2002 the registrant info was probably the main source of information about a domain, however with the advent of social media this situation has changed considerably.

Now there are valid reasons for not having the full registrant details available to everyone (via public WHOIS) and though Nominet does allow individuals' details to be excluded, that's pretty much the only exception to having the information published. This has also led to the development of privacy services, whereby the domain is registered to an organisation and then transferred to the privacy organisation so they information is displayed.

This has lead to issues with domain dispute issues as Nominet operate a "3 strikes" rule and if the dispute is over a domain held by a privacy organisation, then that can affect them (when it's really a customer of their's).

Nominet is looking at various options to solve these issues.

Interested stakeholders may submit a response on-line.

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