After much deliberation and consultation (in other words, in true Canadian fashion), the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA) has announced that WHOIS Privacy will go into effect on .ca domain names beginning June 10th, 2008.
The CIRA approach to WHOIS privacy is quite interesting and demonstrates a clear desire to protect the privacy of Registrants. There is full information on the new policies at the CIRA website.
In his Law Bytes column in today’s Toronto Star, Michael Geist calls the new policy “a model for domain name registries around the world.”
Geist goes on to suggest that CIRA is now in a global leadership position on the issue of registrant privacy. Geist writes, “With more than a million Canadian domain name registrations, the resolution of the whois issue ensures that the Canadian domain name space is set for continued growth as it now features a “privacy advantage” over other domains struggling to strike a similar compromise.”
What makes the CIRA policy different is that WHOIS privacy is enabled by default for individual domain owners. Registrants have to specifically opt-out with CIRA to have their information displayed. In contrast, the registration information for corporate domain holders is shown by default, however, they can opt-out and hide the information in what CIRA calls special circumstances.
As you would expect, we’ll be fully complying with the new policies. We’ll have more on how things will work from both a Registrar and from the Reseller perspective soon.