Before: Arbitrator EvaStöwe (A), Respondent: CAcert (R), Claimant: Martin M (C), Case: a20140123.1

History Log

Original Dispute, Discovery (Private Part)

EOT Private Part

origianl Dispute

(anonymised and shortened version)


Below is the german reasoning why I want to leave the CACert community.

* Close my account
* Delete all my data (list below not guaranteed to be unique):
** email addresses
** pgp keys
** domains
** client certificats

Please open a dispute and proceed.

[Elaborate explanation about the proceedings of a support case where C tried to help someone else that went bad.]


The original dispute is the request to close an assurer account. The reason for the wish to leave after the support case, is reasonable, even if no reason has to be given.

All certificates of the account of the claimant were revoked.

The normal procedure for the closing of assurer accounts is to ask the leaving assurer to send the CAP forms for the assurances done by the assurer to the arbitrator of the case.

The claimant was quite cooperative and showed a lot of understanding in the mail contact with A. The claimant gave understandable reasons why it is not possible to send the CAP forms to the Arbitrator, even as he would be willing to do so.

The reason behind the sending of the CAP forms to the Arbitrator is so that it is ensured that CAcert is able to present them afterwards to back up the according assurances if needed, during the remaining of the 7 years for which the CAP forms have to be kept by an assurer. This is done because after leaving CAcert the connection to the assurer may be lost, so that the assurer could not be asked to present them anymore, as the assurer could not be contacted for this.

We should strife to back up our assurances as good as possible, as they are the RA for CAcert and by this reason to rely on the named certificates of the assurees.

The normal way to proceed would not have been possible in this case.

A member has the right to end the membership as stated in the CCA and this should be done within a reasonable time frame, it would be unfair treatment to not let the claimant leave because of the issue with the CAP forms until the 7 years are over.

The obvious alternative would be to revoke the assurances and by this reduce the assurance points the assurees have. This may change the level of assurance and the kind of certificates the assurees may issue. As the assurees are not responsible for the staying or leaving of another member - in this case the assurer this would be an unexpected, unusable and maybe unnecessary hardship for them if there is any other way to proceed.

In the present case the assurer was found to be quite helpfull. He also showed that he cares about assurees and tries to help them in the support case which was in the end the reason to leave CAcert.

As the Arbitrator and the Case Manager agree that C may be sincerly be trusted in this regard, the Arbitrator decided to propose the following:

If C would give his CARS that
a) C would continue to be responsible for the assurances you made and the according CAP forms and
b) C would continue to be reachable via Cs primary email address by A or another Arbitrator in a valid case regarding said assurances

until the last of said assurances reaches the 7 years C agreed to safeguard them at the time of the assurance (2016-10-12) and that C would destroy any CAP form or other information about the assurances afterwards,

in this case A would terminate Cs membership at the earliest possible time (3 months after the revocation of Cs last certifiactes) - 2014-12-26. This would include the anonymization of the personal data in Cs account. The assurances would be unaffected and not be removed.

This would allow us to keep the assurances valid, so that the assurees would not be affected by the claimant leaving CAcert.

A let state the fAfterollowing after the proposal:

I can only make this proposal because I am convinced, that you are a reliable person, who would honour a given word even after the termination of the membership.

(A CARS is a CAcert Assurer Reliance Statement and something like a word of honour with binding status.)

The proposal was accepted by the claimant and a matching CARS was given by the claimant.


Part 1:

The claimant gave reasons to believe that it is currently not possible to send the CAP forms to the Arbitrator.

The claimant also gave a CARS that

  1. C would continue to be responsible for the assurances C made and for the according CAP forms and
  2. C would continue to be reachable via Cs primary email address by me or another Arbitrator in a valid case regarding said assurances

until the last of said assurances reaches the 7 years C agreed to safeguard them at the time of the assurance and that the CAP forms would not be destroyed before this time.

This should be regarded to be sufficient in this case to be able to let the claimant leave CAcert while also keeping the assurances intact.

Support should close the account of the claimant similar to the close account procedure defined in a20111128.3 without revoking the assurances of this account. Unnecessary mails may be skipped. The membership should end at the earliest possible time with respect to the certificates, the assurances should not be taken in account while calculating this date.

Part 2:

The decision is based on four points:

This ruling may be used carefully as a precedents ruling for other cases, if the arbitrator of those cases is convinced after an interaction with the claimant, that those 4 points apply. An arbitrator in such a case should be advised to also consult the CM if the CM is likewise convinced.

A solution that keeps the CAP forms in the hands of a CAcert member and assurer would - in general - be preferable.

-- 2014-10-10, in a train between Bochum and Essen


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Arbitrations/a20140123.1 (last edited 2015-09-21 07:53:17 by EvaStöwe)