System Status
10/25/2006ICANN can't shut down Spamhaus

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) said in a statement 10.11.2006 that it does not have the ability or authority to comply with a proposed court order that it suspend the Internet service of The Spamhaus Project Ltd. Spamhaus is a volunteer-run antispam service.

In a proposed order last Friday, Judge Charles Kocoras of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois called on the organizations responsible for registering the Internet address to suspend the organization's Internet service. Both ICANN -- the nonprofit organization set up to manage the domain name system of the Internet -- and Toronto-based Tucows Inc., the registrar, are named in the order.

The court threatened to shut down Spamhaus for ignoring an $11.7 million judgment against it. The proposed order followed a Sept. 13 ruling in which Spamhaus was required to pay damages and stop listing an e-mail marketing company called E360Insight LLC in its database of known spammers.

ICANN said that in most cases, only the Internet registrar with whom the registrant has a contractual relationship can suspend an individual domain name.

"Even if ICANN were properly brought before the court in this matter, which ICANN has not been, ICANN cannot comply with any order requiring it to suspend or place a client hold on or any specific domain name because ICANN does not have either the ability or the authority to do so," the organization said.

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