[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 19 (Monday, January 29, 2018)]
[Pages 4037-4038]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-01612]



 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 
required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, invites comments on a 
proposed extension of an existing information collection: 0651-0045 
(Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) Certificate Action Form).

DATES: Written comments must be submitted on or before March 30, 2018.

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

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:  Requests for additional information 
should be directed to Richard Arnold, Security Authorizations Branch, 
United States Patent and Trademark Office, P.O. Box 1450, Alexandria, 
VA 22313-1450; by telephone at 571-270-0539; or by email to 
[email protected]. Additional information about this collection 
is also available at http://www.reginfo.gov under ``Information 
Collection Review.''


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protecting the confidentiality of unpublished patent applications in 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 any secure online systems that the USPTO 
provides, including the systems for electronic filing of patent 
applications and viewing confidential

[[Page 4038]]

information about unpublished patent applications.
    This information collection covers the Certificate Action Form 
(PTO-2042), which is used by the public to request a new digital 
certificate, revoke a current certificate, or recover 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 Customer Number allows an applicant to associate all 
correspondence and USPTO actions regarding multiple patent applications 
to a single address and name. The Certificate Action Form 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 also register to receive 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.

III. Data

    OMB Number: 0651-0045.
    IC Instruments and Forms: 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: 3,825 responses per year.
    Estimated Time per Response: The USPTO estimates that it will take 
the public approximately 30 minutes (0.50 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: 1,912.50 hours.
    Estimated Total Annual Respondent Cost Burden: $402,084. The USPTO 
expects that attorneys, paraprofessionals, and independent inventors 
will complete the submissions for this collection. The professional 
hourly rate for attorneys is $438, for paraprofessionals is $145, and 
for independent inventors is $47.71. The attorney rate is established 
by estimates in the 2017 Report on the Economic Survey, published by 
the Committee on Economics of Legal Practice of the American 
Intellectual Property Law Association. The paraprofessional rate is 
established by estimates in the 2016 National Utilization and 
Compensation Survey, published by the National Association of Legal 
Assistance (NALA). The independent inventor rate is based the mean 
hourly wage for engineers according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics 
Occupational Employment Statistics (17-2199). The USPTO estimates that 
the combined average hourly rate of these estimates for all respondents 
is approximately $210.24. Using this hourly rate, the USPTO estimates 
that the total respondent cost burden for this collection is $402,804 
per year.

                                                                                              Annual       Annual burden                    Annual cost
           IC No.                      Item               Annual response time (hours)       response          hours           Rate           burden
                                                       (a)..............................             (b)     (c) = (a) x             (d)     (e) = (c) x
                                                                                                                     (b)                             (d)
1..........................  Certificate Action Form   0.50 (30 minutes)................           3,825        1,912.50         $210.24     $402,084.00
                              (including Subscriber
    Totals.................  ........................  .................................           3,825        1,915.50  ..............      402,084.00

    Estimated Total Annual Non-hour Respondent Cost Burden: $24,824.25. 
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 notarizing is $6 
and 3,825 responses for these forms will be submitted annually, for a 
total cost of $22,950 per year. The notary fee was determined based on 
estimates for notary fees by states as published by the National Notary 
    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 $0.49 and that it will receive 3,825 mailed 
responses annually for a total postage cost of approximately $1,874.25 
per year.

IV. Request for Comments

    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.
    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.

Marcie Lovett,
Records and Information Governance Division Director, OCTO United 
States Patent and Trademark Office.
[FR Doc. 2018-01612 Filed 1-26-18; 8:45 am]