Thus challenges Nominet on 'whois' privacy issue

Thus - the alternative telco group that owns the Demon ISP - is looking to challenge plans to introduce changes to Nominet's 'whois' Web site ownership directory. It claims that Nominet's decision to publish the contact addresses of all registrants regarded as "trading" or "businesses" might not be legal.

It has already held informal talks with the Information Commissioner and is considering whether to make a formal complaint. Thus' concerns seem to centre on what exactly is allowed under the Distance Selling and Electronic Commerce Regulations.

The alternative telco believes that these regulations do state that businesses must publish their contact details under certain circumstances and in certain manners. However, it believes it is not clear that they should allow Nominet to publish this information without seeking prior agreement.

It maintains that in many cases the contact details published on Web sites relate to technical and support services, and may be wholly inappropriate to be listed in a directory as the main contact address for a business. Thus' view is that the Nominet database is a directory. And as defined by the Telecommunications (Data Protection and Privacy) Regulations it gives individuals and businesses certain rights such as the option to be ex-directory.

News source: The Reg

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