Fi-domain names transferred to an international model

According to current knowledge, the legislation on fi-domain names will change on 5 September 2016. A legislative proposal concerning the Code for Information Society and Communications Services has been submitted to the Finnish Parliament for handling. If the proposal is implemented, the roles of FICORA and service providers will become clearer when customers can acquire all the services they need from one and the same place. Over 80 per cent of the current fi-domain names have a service provider.

The changes induced by the proposal to the registrar model for fi-domain names and conditions for granting them were discussed at the Domain Name Day. The event was arranged by FICORA for its interest groups on 14 February 2014.

For instance Sweden has had good experiences of the registrar model. Swedish SE-domain names were transferred to the model in 2009. .SE-domain names are administered by IIS (The Internet Infrastructure Foundation). Torbjörn Carlsson, Head of Registry Services at IIS, states that the remodelling project was large, but it has benefitted both registrars and customers.

Also Jørgen Christensen, Managing Director at Ascio, reckons the international model has a great deal of advantages, owing to the generally-used EPP interface, among others. This means that there is no need to build an expensive system for each top-level domain (TLD), i.e. one and the same interface can be used for all domains. Christensen recommends a simple, highly-automated model. It is a very good thing for registrars to have an overall responsibility for their customers.

Internationally coherent operational model

In the registrar model, FICORA grants fi-domain names also in the future, but the roles of the authority and registrars will become clearer when customers can acquire all the services they need from one and the same place - from their own registrar. By introducing the registrar model, Finland's domain name activities will transfer to a coherent operational model with other international players.

The Code for Information Society and Communications Services involves various changes, but the user protection will not be weakened. For instance, the trademark and business name protection related to fi-domain names remains unchanged. However, domain names can be applied freely, since the restrictions related to the applicant's place of residence and age are abolished.

Registrars' role

Domain name registrars are subject to stricter and more specified obligations in the future, particularly with respect to information security. The authority monitors registrars' operations and that registrars follow the acts and provisions related to the operations.

The current service providers do not automatically become registrars. It is still required in the legislation that a notification must be submitted to FICORA. The notification is free of charge.

Further information:

Juhani Juselius, Chief, tel. +358 295 390 492

Key words: Internet , Domain names , News

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