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About ICANN’s new contact validation

About ICANN’s new contact validation

31 October 2014 by in Hosting

If you’ve registered top level domains through Cyso, it’s important that you read the following message carefully. This message concerns all gTLDs (generic domain names such as .com and .net) and some ccTLDs (for example .nu, .se, and .es). ICANN has recently changed its policy regarding the validation of whois data for domains. The new policy requires validation of the email address used for registration. The use of unverified email addresses may result in suspension of domains.

Email verification required for domain holders

Cyso is required by its registrars, such as Realtime Register, to check the validity of every email address used for domain registration.

It’s very important to complete these validations as failure to do so may result in suspension of domains, resulting in unavailability of website, email and all other services using the domain name. Validation is required in the following cases:

  1. New registrations
  2. Transfer of an existing domain to a new owner
  3. Registrant contact information changes

Unless one of the situations mentioned above occurs, addresses already in use will not be subject to validation.

Validation process

If one of these situations does occur, however, the validation process will be started. It works like this:

  • An email is sent by one of our registrars (for example, Realtime Register) to the email address of the domain holder. It contains a link to click to validate the email address.
  • The registrar will continue to send reminders until the validation has been completed.
  • If, after 14 days, still no confirmation has been received, the domain may be suspended.

As soon as an e-mail address has been validated, no further verification is required for that address.

Suspension of a domain

If a verification process fails (after no response within 14 days), the registrar is required by ICANN to suspend domains which use that particular email address as a contact for the domain holder. In effect, this means that these domains, and all services that depend on it, may become unavailable.

There are two ways be re-enable these domains:

  • Complete the validation process. Links from the emails are still valid. After validating, services will once again be enabled. It may not work instantly, however.
  • Change the email address. You’ll need to give us a new address that we can use. If it’s an email address that’s already validated, all domains can be re-enabled immediately. If not, a new verification procedure needs to be started first.

Our registrars have assured us that they will do their utmost best to prevent domains from being taken offline. In practice, this means that they will first perform the validation, and only do the change that triggered it if validation was successful.

No, we don’t like it either

Let’s just say that we’re not a big fan of this new policy. And we're not the only ones. We think there are several things that are unclear and unfriendly to both our customers and ourselves. We’re worried that we are unable to fully and reliably oversee everything that’s going on. The last thing we want is having our customers getting taken offline, just because they’ve missed an e-mail or thought it was spam or phishing email. However, since it’s being forced upon both us and registrars by ICANN, there’s very little we can do about it.

We are, however, conferring with our domain registration partners to see if the process can be clarified, improved and made more friendly and robust. We’ll keep you posted on any changes and progress. If you have any questions, please contact your account manager or our servicedesk.


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