March TLD Round-up

Here is our latest overview of news from the domain name universe

SWITCH Finds Phishing Goes Up, Malware Down, On .CH Websites

The incidences of malware on .CH websites was down by a third (33%) in 2014, but incidences of phishing went up five-fold to 323 incidences. SWITCH, the Swiss registry, uncovered 1,839 cases of malware last year, roughly a third below the total of 2,718 recorded in 2013. In 1,493 of these cases, registrants removed the harmful code after receiving the first notification from SWITCH.

SWITCH Gets .CH Registry Contract Extension To 2017

On 20 March 2015, the SWITCH foundation and the Federal Office of Communications (OFCOM) signed an extension of the existing registry contract to 30 June 2017. But a public tender will be called in 2016 for the operation of the registry from July 2017 onwards. The contract extension means that SWITCH will retain responsibility for the administration of .ch domain names and support for customers in transferring their .ch domain names to the registrars, a process that is currently underway.

.COM Turns 30!

Verisign, the .com registry operator, has celebrated .com turning 30 years old. The first .com domain name – – was registered in March 1985. In the following 30 years the internet has grown immensely and today there are nearly three billion people around the world online and and over $1.3 trillion in global e-commerce sales rely on the internet. As well as 117 million .com registrations.

Sunrise For .IRISH Commenced St Patricks Day

The Sunrise period for the .irish gTLD launched on 17 March, St Patricks Day, and is now available to the global Irish community for use by businesses, brands and organisations who wish to register early and want to market and develop products and services clearly identifying with the word ‘Irish’.

Following the Sunrise period, a Landrush phase will run from 21 May to 20 June, a premium phase open to the general public during which high value domain names that are not trademarks can be applied for. And then on 25 June 2015 the .irish domain will be open to the general public.

.KY Domains Available For All In September 2015

The ccTLD for the Cayman Islands, .ky, has seen a change in its terms and conditions. As a result, it will be available to all as of 2 September 2015, but the previously free domains will incur a registration fee for the first time.

Dot London Supports Internet Watch Foundation

Dot London has signed up to support the UK child protection organisation, the Internet Watch Foundation, which provides a trusted and secure service to help protect people from exposure to child sexual abuse images online.

.ORG Growth Slowing, But Demand Booming in Asia-Pacific

The growth of the .org gTLD has slowed in recent years. From an increase in domains under management (DUM) of 9.7 percent in the 2010 calendar year and 9.9 percent in 2011, growth dropped to 4.3 percent in 2012, 2.6 percent in 2013 and then 1.3 percent in 2014, as per Dashboard reports published by the Public Interest Registry, the .org registry operator. However while growth is slowing, and maybe even declining, in some regions, demand is booming. In the Asia-Pacific, 1.37 million domains were registered in 2014, a 16 percent increase over December 2013.

North American .REALTOR Seen As Struggling

Domain name registrations for the .realtor gTLD are way short of targets. The operator has given away 95,000 registrations to bona fide North American real estate agents, way short of its target of 500,000 domains it had initially planned to give away to members. It seems sometimes even when something is free, it can’t be given away! Registrations of the gTLD have been increasing by around 60 per day which would mean the NAR would take 18 years to reach its target.

.SUCKS Launches With Fears Of Brand-Bashing

The .sucks gTLD has been launched and it is not without controversy as it promotes itself as a “bash-a-brand” gTLD. And rightfully brand owners are concerned that they may be forced to register some of the highest prices for a domain name for any TLD just to ensure a registrant doesn’t set up a website to allow internet users to vent their displeasure at their brand. The operator of the gTLD claims each .sucks “domain has the potential to become an essential part of every organisation’s customer relationship management programme.” They want it to be a legitimate place where the public can voice criticism. But not everyone agrees.

Nominet Consulting on Contact Data Disclosure in the .UK WHOIS

Nominet is currently consulting on a proposed policy to clarify what data about registrants is published in the .uk WHOIS and, regardless of what’s published, ensure it has the accurate data essential for running give nod to .uk privacy services. The deadline for submissions is 3 June 2015.

ICM Registry Cuts Registry Price for .XXX Domains

ICM Registry announced a price cut for .xxx domain names created in April. From 1 to 30 April registrants can purchase new, one-year .xxx registrations for a reduced rate. Registrants will also be eligible for participation in the upcoming .porn and .adult Domain Matching Programmes.