[Federal Register Volume 76, Number 153 (Tuesday, August 9, 2011)]
[Pages 48807-48808]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2011-20097]



United States Patent and Trademark Office

Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) Certificate Action Form

ACTION: Proposed collection; comment request.


SUMMARY: The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), as part 
of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, 
invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this 
opportunity to comment on the continuing information collection, as 
required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Public Law 104-13 (44 
U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)).

DATES: Written comments must be submitted on or before October 11, 

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by any of the following methods:
     E-mail: [email protected]. Include ``0651-
0045 comment'' in the subject line of the message.
     Mail: Susan K. Fawcett, Records Officer, Office of the 
Chief Information Officer, United States Patent and Trademark Office, 
P.O. Box 1450, Alexandria, VA 22313-1450.
     Federal Rulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Requests for additional information 
should be directed to Rod Turk, Office of Organizational Policy and 
Governance, United States Patent and Trademark Office, P.O. Box 1450, 
Alexandria, VA 22313-1450; by telephone at 571-272-1975; or by e-mail 
to [email protected]. Additional information about this collection is 
also available at http://www.reginfo.gov under ``Information Collection 


I. Abstract

    The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) uses Public 
Key Infrastructure (PKI) technology to support electronic commerce 
between the USPTO and its customers. PKI is a set of hardware, 
software, policies, and procedures that provide important security 
services for the electronic business activities of the USPTO, including 
protecting the confidentiality of unpublished patent applications in 
accordance with 35 U.S.C. 122 and 37 CFR 1.14, as well as protecting 
international patent applications in accordance with Article 30 of the 
Patent Cooperation Treaty.
    In order to provide the necessary security for its electronic 
commerce systems, the USPTO uses PKI technology to protect the 
integrity and confidentiality of information submitted to the USPTO. 
PKI employs public and private encryption keys to authenticate the 
customer's identity and support secure electronic communication between 
the customer and the USPTO. Customers may submit a request to the USPTO 
for a digital certificate, which enables the customer to create the 
encryption keys necessary for electronic identity verification and 
secure transactions with the USPTO. This digital certificate is 
required in order to access secure online systems that are provided by 
the USPTO for transactions such as electronic filing of patent 
applications and viewing confidential information about unpublished 
patent applications.
    This information collection includes the Certificate Action Form 
(PTO-2042), which is used by the public to request a new digital 
certificate, the revocation of a current certificate, or the recovery 
of a lost or corrupted certificate. Customers may also change the name 
listed on the certificate or associate the certificate with one or more 
Customer Numbers. A certificate request must include a notarized 
signature in order to verify the identity of the applicant. The 
Certificate Action Form has an accompanying subscriber agreement to 
ensure that customers understand their obligations regarding the use of 
the digital certificates and cryptographic software. When generating a 
new certificate, customers register to get a set of seven codes that 
will enable customers to recover a lost certificate online without 
having to contact USPTO support staff.

II. Method of Collection

    The Certificate Action Form must be notarized and may be mailed or 
hand delivered to the USPTO.

[[Page 48808]]

III. Data

    OMB Number: 0651-0045.
    Form Number(s): PTO-2042.
    Type of Review: Revision of a currently approved collection.
    Affected Public: Individuals or households; businesses or other 
for-profits; and not-for-profit institutions.
    Estimated Number of Respondents: 1,857 responses per year.
    Estimated Time per Response: The USPTO estimates that it will take 
the public approximately 30 minutes (0.5 hours) to read the 
instructions and subscriber agreement, gather the necessary 
information, prepare the Certificate Action Form, and submit the 
completed request.
    Estimated Total Annual Respondent Burden Hours: 929 hours.
    Estimated Total Annual Respondent Cost Burden: $129,131. The USPTO 
expects that 70% of the submissions for this collection will be 
prepared by paraprofessionals, 15% by attorneys, and 15% by independent 
inventors. Using those proportions and the estimated rates of $122 per 
hour for paraprofessionals, $325 per hour for attorneys in private 
firms, and $30 per hour for independent inventors, the USPTO estimates 
that the average rate for those respondents will be approximately $139 
per hour. Therefore, the estimated total respondent cost burden for 
this collection will be approximately $129,131 per year.

                                                                                   Estimated        Estimated
                        Item                             Estimated time for          annual       annual burden
                                                              response             responses          hours
Certificate Action Form (including Subscriber                      30 minutes            1,857              929
 Agreement) (PTO-2042)..............................
    Totals..........................................  ........................           1,857              929

    Estimated Total Annual Non-hour Respondent Cost Burden: $4,531. 
There are no capital start-up costs, maintenance costs, or fees 
associated with this information collection. However, this collection 
does have annual (non-hour) cost burden associated with the Certificate 
Action Form.
    This collection has costs due to the notarization requirement for 
authenticating the signatures on the Certificate Action Form. The USPTO 
estimates that the average fee for having a signature notarized is $2 
and that 1,857 responses for these forms will be submitted annually, 
for a total cost of $3,714 per year.
    This collection also has postage costs for submitting the 
Certificate Action Form to the USPTO by mail. The form cannot be faxed 
or submitted electronically because it requires an original notarized 
signature. The USPTO estimates that the first class postage cost for 
these forms will be 44 cents and that it will receive 1,857 mailed 
responses annually, for a total postage cost of approximately $817 per 

IV. Request for Comments

    Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of 
information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of 
the agency, including whether the information shall have practical 
utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden 
(including hours and cost) of the proposed collection of information; 
(c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the 
information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the 
collection of information on respondents, e.g., the use of automated 
collection techniques or other forms of information technology.
    Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized or 
included in the request for OMB approval of this information 
collection; they also will become a matter of public record.

    Dated: August 4, 2011.
Susan K. Fawcett,
Records Officer, USPTO, Office of the Chief Information Officer.
[FR Doc. 2011-20097 Filed 8-8-11; 8:45 am]