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India's national domain registry persistently cuts the branch it is sitting on

National Internet Exchange of India (NIXI), acting as the registry of the Indian national domain .IN, announced introduction of new rules, which look aimed at combating the privacy of registrants. According to the Domain Gang, now when registering domain names in the .IN zone it will be forbidden to use anonymous e-mail addresses, and registrar companies will be deprived of the right to use VPN-services to create addresses, as well as will be obliged to provide registration logs at the request of the registry, including IP-addresses.

In effect, this means that any registrar that allows its customers to use privacy settings in WHOIS will be in violation of the rules and its contract with NIXI will be subject to termination. The situation seems more than strange, since the opportunity to use privacy settings is already effectively a default option for most major registrars. It is also worth recalling that this is not the first questionable step of the Indian national domain registry. Thus, earlier NIXI banned the possibility of registering several domain names by the same person without special authorization of the registry head – for some reason explaining it by the interests of national security. And then actually put a ban on the domain business, denying registrants the right to register domain names for investment purposes. When viewed from the outside, one gets the impression that the registry is acting to the detriment of its own long-term interests, diligently scaring registrants and registrars away from the national .IN domain with a persistence clearly worthy of better use.

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