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DIDP Request #17 - How ICANN Chooses their Contractual Compliance Auditors

Posted by Asvatha Babu at Jul 29, 2016 02:20 AM |
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At a congressional hearing on internet governance and progress, then President of ICANN Fadi Chehadi indicated that the number of people working on compliance audits grew substantially—from 6 to 24 (we misquoted it as 25)— in the span of a few years.

It is clear to us at CIS that the people in charge of these compliance audits perform an important function at ICANN. To that effect, we requested information on the 24 individuals mentioned by Mr Chehadi as well as the third party auditors who perform this powerful watchdog function. More specifically, we requested documents calling for appointments of the auditors and copies of their contracts with ICANN.

The request filed by Padmini Baruah can be found here.

What ICANN said

In their response to the first part of our question, ICANN linked us to a webpage containing the names and titles of all employees working on contractual compliance. This page contains 26 names including the Contractual Compliance Risk and Audit Manager:

ICANN also described the process of selecting KPMG as their third party auditor in detail. A pre-selection process shortlists 5 companies  that fit the following criteria: knowledge of ICANN, global presence, size, expertise and reputation. Then, ICANN issues a targeted Request For Proposal (RFP) to these companies asking them for their audit proposals. After a question and answer session, a proposal analysis and rating the scorecards, a “cross-functional steering committee” decided to go with KPMG. While the process has been discussed transparently, our questions remain unanswered.

The RFP would qualify as the document requested by us in the second part of the question (i.e.)  a “document that calls for appointments to the post of the contractual compliance auditor.” Unfortunately, ICANN has not published the RFP citing the DIDP Conditions for Non-disclosure. However, the timeline for the RFP and other details have been posted here after our DIDP request. In addition, the contract between  KPMG and ICANN has also not been published.

ICANN's response to our DIDP request may be found here.

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Asvatha Babu

Asvatha Babu is a Master’s candidate in the International Communication program at American University's School of International Service in Washington D.C. Her research interests include using ICTs for inclusive development, internet governance and cyber security. Thus far, her work with CIS has dealt specifically with ICANN’s transparency and accountability policies. She tweets about tech and feminism at @fireflyclass.