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Wednesday, December 26, 2007

ICANN to improve Whois Accuracy

Global coordinating agency for the Internet, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) has advanced plans to improve Whois Accuracy.

The plans would enable the accessibility of some ICANN compliance projects such as Whois Data Accuracy study, Whois Data reminder policy audit, registrar investigation of Whois Inaccuracy claims audit and accessibility study of Whois.

ICANN noted that these steps have become necessary because over the years, its constituencies and others have observed apparent inaccuracies in Whois contact information provided by registrants when registering and maintaining their domain names.

Hence in an attempt to contribute to community discussion regarding Whois policy, ICANN has undertaken a study of domain name Whois contact information accuracy, the body said.

According to the ICANN position paper, with a great deal of Internet community interest behind it, the study commenced in November 2007 by developing a sampling plan to draw a representatives of domain names from the Generic Top Level Domain (gTLD) name population.

Equally, Champion Infotel gathered that in consultation with a statistician, ICANN developed an algorithm to determine the appropriate sample population size; one that provides acceptable accuracy and certainty levels.

However, in the first phase of this study, ICANN will select a sample from statistical purposes, an infinitely large database that will provide a measure of accuracy to +/- 5 per cent with a certainty of 95 per cent.

“Staff will then randomly select domain names in accordance with statistical sampling practices,” ICANN officials informed.

Also, ICANN said its currently defining the steps staff will take to determine the accuracy of Whois contact information associated with each registered domain name and address within the representative sample.

“It is ICANN’s goal to ensure that staff uses practical and reasonably reliable means to assess accuracy of each data set,” the body said.

ICANN explained that after finalizing the methodology to determine the Whois data accuracy of each data set, staff would execute the steps for each registered domain name within the representative sample.

As well, staffs anticipate several steps will be necessary to determine Whois data accuracy, thus they will conduct this study in phases.

ICANN will publish status reports as staff completes work in connection with each phase of the study.

The first report regarding this study will be published by February 2008.

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