ICANN Grants Data Retention Waiver to Blacknight

Leading Irish domain registrar now able to comply with 2013 RAA, and offer new gTLDs to customers

17 JUNE 2014, CARLOW, IRELAND
Summary
Ireland's leading hosting & domain registration company has been granted a waiver by ICANN which will allow them to comply with their ICANN contract without breaching Irish & EU data privacy law.

Ireland’s leading domain registrar and hosting company, Blacknight is pleased to announce that ICANN has positively responded to their request for a 2013 RAA Data Retention Waiver.

The original request for a Data Retention Waiver was made in October 2013, in response to an inability to sign the 2013 Registrar Accreditation Agreement (RAA) due to a conflict between the term for which customer data must be retained and the term that data may be legally retained under Irish and EU law.

As Blacknight could not sign the 2013 RAA, (which is a prerequisite for the registrar to offer the hundreds of new gTLDs that have been coming to market since early 2014), and remain compliant with EU law, the award winning registrar appealed to ICANN for a Data Retention Waiver through which they could remain ICANN accredited and retain data for a shorter period under EU law.

The waiver signifies Blacknight’s ability to sign the 2013 RAA to be both ICANN and EU compliant. Blacknight CEO Michele Neylon states: “It is a great relief to be able to now comply with the 2013 RAA without being concerned that we are violating the local laws under which our business operates. We thank ICANN for their action and understanding on this matter and feel that this is an important step for the organization toward accommodating the global community. We very much look forward to offering new TLDs in the immediate future.”

ICANN has granted a limited waiver from compliance with certain provisions of the 2013 RAA on the following terms:

“ ICANN agrees that, following Registrar's execution of the 2013 RAA: 
(a) For purposes of assessing Registrar's compliance with the data retention requirement of Paragraph 1.1 of the Data Retention Specification in the 2013 RAA, the period of ‘two additional years’ in Paragraph 1.1 of the Data Retention Specification will be deemed modified to ‘one additional year’; and
(b) For purposes of assessing Registrar's compliance with the data retention requirement of Paragraph 1.2 of the Data Retention Specification in the 2013 RAA, the period of ‘one hundred and eighty (180) days’ in Paragraph 1.2 of the Data Retention Specification will be deemed modified to ‘ninety (90) days.’

In all other respects the terms of the Data Retention Specification will remain AS IS. The waiver granted to Registrar applies only to the post-sponsorship period of retention of the data listed in the Paragraphs 1.1.1 through 1.1.8 and Paragraphs 1.2.1 through 1.2.3 inclusive of the Data Retention Specification, and it does not constitute a waiver of any other provisions of the 2013 RAA or other ICANN policies applicable to registrars. Without limiting the foregoing, nothing in this waiver limits Registrar's obligation to comply with Consensus Policies or Temporary Policies developed and adopted in accordance with ICANN's Bylaws ("ICANN Policies") or limits Registrar's obligation to comply with any amendment, supplement or modification of the 2013 RAA approved and adopted in accordance with the terms of the 2013 RAA ("RAA Amendments"). In the event of any inconsistency between this waiver and the terms of any ICANN Policy or RAA Amendment, the terms of the ICANN Policy or RAA Amendment will control.

The waiver granted to Registrar shall remain in effect for the duration of the term of the 2013 RAA signed by Registrar.”

Blacknight will begin offering new TLDs as early as late June 2014.

To read the full ICANN announcement, please visit:

https://www.icann.org/news/announcement-2-2014-06-16-en

For more information on Blacknight please visit http://www.blacknight.com

Quotes
"It is a great relief to be able to now comply with the 2013 RAA without being concerned that we are violating the local laws under which our business operates" Michele Neylon, CEO, Blacknight
"We thank ICANN for their action and understanding on this matter and feel that this is an important step for the organization toward accommodating the global community. We very much look forward to offering new TLDs in the immediate future" Michele Neylon, CEO, Blacknight
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About Blacknight

Blacknight (http://www.blacknight.com/) are an Irish based, ICANN accredited domain registrar and hosting company. Recipients of several awards for their revolutionary use of social media, Blacknight are one of Europe’s most cutting edge Internet companies. Blacknight constantly seek to lead the way by introducing innovative solutions for its client base and provide dedicated servers and co-location as well as a comprehensive range of Microsoft Windows and Linux based hosting plans and domain name registration services to business globally. IP transit services and other solutions for more demanding business and academic customers are offered a la carte.