Study examines use of privacy and proxy services.
A new report (pdf) released by ICANN yesterday says that 15%-25% of all registered domain names use some sort of service to mask whois information.
The study found that the majority of people masking whois use a proxy service, which means an entity actually registers the domain on the domain “owner’s” behalf, and then leases it to that owner. Only 15% use privacy services, which mask some of the whois information such as phone number or address.
ICANN’s Affirmation of Commitments with the United States government shows that keeping whois information open and public is a goal. Section 9.3.1 reads:
ICANn additionally commits to enforcing its existing policy relating to WHOIS, subject to applicable laws. Such existing policy requires that ICANN implement measures to maintain timely, unresitricted and public access to accurate and complete WHOIS information, including registrant, technical, billing, and administrative contact information…