Nominet debates Soca website proposals


Nominet debates Soca website proposals

Ian Grant

Police want to be able to take down websites at a moment's notice, but require changes to the terms and conditions under which UK domain names operate.

Nominet, the .uk domain name registrar, is calling for interested parties to join an "issue group" to guide its approach to the changes asked for by the Serious Organised Crime Agency (Soca).

Nominet said it would distribute an independent summary of the issue to stakeholders and group members ahead of the first meeting.

The closing date for applications to join the group is 23 February and Nominet expects to hold the first meeting in March.

Nominet is also considering proposals regarding the monetisation of and traffic monitoring on expired domains by registrars.

Nominet is calling for comment on the proposal, or the treatment of expired domains more generally, by 2 March. It will then decide whether to form an issue group on the subject.

Nominet director of operations Eleanor Bradley encouraged anyone who wants to be involved to get in touch and have their say. "We want to gather the broadest range of feedback possible across all matters of .uk policy and feed it into our policy development process," she said.

Interested parties should click here to leave comments.

The two initiatives are the first to be subject to a new policy development process at the registrar.

Nominet, an independent not-for-profit company, has come under increasing pressure to relinquish its powers to government. The Digital Economy Act reserves the power for government to take over Nominet's role and convert it to a civil service operation.

Nominet headed off an earlier direct attempt to take it over by agreeing to oversight by a trust that includes civil servants and political figures.

The threat to Nominet's independence remains because the United Nations is considering proposals that the future development and management of the internet be run by UN member states.

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