30 years ago Austria’s ccTLD was delegated. In 1998, the Austrian Registry nic.at was founded along with the reporting hotline for illegal content, Stopline. And then 10 years later CERT.at (Austria’s Computer Emergency Response Team) was founded. Continue reading Austria’s Internet Celebrating 4 Anniversaries in 2018
The 2018 Domain Pulse conference is motoring into view and will be held at BMW World in Munich on 22 and 23 March. The annual conference this year is organised by DENIC, the German registry with a focus on the digital future as well as the state of the domain name industry. The conference rotates between Germany, Switzerland (SWITCH) and Austria (nic.at).
The free conference is a great way of getting to know the German-speaking domain name market with a few hundred people from registries, registrars and resellers, domain investors and a range of other participants from the domain name world. And fear not if you’re not a German speaker. Most, if not all, presentations in German are translated into English [this writer certainly hopes so!] and there are plenty of great opportunities to network and get to know the key players in the German, Swiss and Austrian domain name industries, including the usual evening event. Already around 250 people have registered.
The conference, as always, has a focus on presentations and panels dealing with domain names, but also covers a range of other topics. This year there will be a look at the future with presentations on the governance of the Internet of Things, a futurologist looking at “digital enlightenment”, smart mobility and connected driving, another on security, terrorism and fear and another on privacy and security in the digital space.
And of course, there will be presentations on domain names with one of the most important and interesting topical discussions likely to be on the upcoming European General Data Protection Regulation. The GDPR is intended to strengthen and unify data protection for individuals in the European Union. This has an impact on any business that stores personal information on European citizens and the domain name business.
And that’s just day one! Day 2 will kick off with a presentation from Wolfgang Kleinwächter who will look at internet governance in 2018. There will also be a panel discussion on the notice and takedown debate from a registry perspective involving representatives from dotSaarland, DENIC, SWITCH, SIDN, DNS Belgium and Nominet, a discussion on how to overcome registration growth slowdown and an update on what’s been happening in 2017 from the 3 co-hosts.
To register for the free 2018 Domain Pulse, check out the programme and nearby hotels, or even see who else is going, go to:
The Austrian ccTLD registry, nic.at, has booted The Daily Stormer’s .at domain name. The Daily Stormer has been booted by quite a few domain name companies, from registries to registrars and even Cloudflare.
The Daily Stormer’s .at domain name was deleted Monday, AP reported, “after Austrian politicians reported the white supremacist platform’s presence,” according to nic.at’s Head of PR & Marketing Monika Pink-Rank. The domain name was originally registered at the end of August.
The problems for The Daily Stormer started following the horrendous events in Charlottesville, Virginia, and an article was published attacking Heather Heyer, the anti-racism activist that was killed Saturday while demonstrating against the “alt-right” white nationalist movement.
The alt-right white nationalist group was first booted by registrars GoDaddy and then Google who deleted their .com domain names. They then briefly tried a .ru domain, which was also quickly deleted.
But it’s the booting from Cloudflare’s service that is the most controversial. Clouflare provides a number of services that few others do
“What I find troubling is that I woke up this morning and said we’ll kick them off our service and that will effectively kick them off the internet,” Cloudflare CEO Matthew Prince told TechCrunch in August. “[The day] sucked and I worry we made an arbitrary decision.”
“If I’m self-critical, it’s a decision we should have a framework around,” Prince added. “How can we do it in a more disciplined and thorough and predictable and transparent way?”
It was the first time Cloudflare had booted a customer. Techcrunch noted that “Cloudflare’s primary service is a content delivery network that helps websites load quickly, but it also protects them against rushes of traffic, including DDoS attacks designed to knock them offline. The site claims to handle around 10 percent of the internet’s total traffic, with over six million websites using its products, which include free and priced tiers.”
“Because of the precise nature of Cloudflare’s business, and the scarcity of competitors, its role censoring internet speech is not just new, it’s terrifying”, according to an opinion piece in the New York Times.
“What makes Cloudflare an essential part of the internet is its ability to block malicious traffic from barraging clients’ websites with requests that take them offline. Cloudflare is one of the few companies in the world that provide this kind of reliable protection. If you don’t want your website to get taken down by extortionists, jokers, political opposition or hackers, you have to hire Cloudflare or one of its very few competitors.”
What was just the Austrian ccTLD registry, nic.at has grown in recent years. Established in 1998 it has added ipcom GmbH, the subsidiary tasked with taking RcodeZero DNS to market, in 2004. What began as a basic Anycast service with only a few locations is now a powerful network with a host of additional services for a stable DNS.
Then in 2011 with the new gTLD programme about to launch they established a sister company tldbox GmbH. tldbox GmbH provides registry services for the new generic top level domains, supporting applicants in their applications and providing a comprehensive registry system.
And recently they added .versicherung to nic.atâs stable to go with .at, .co.at and .or.at.
And as it grew there was a mish mash of logos, visuals and brand images with nothing tying them together, nothing showing theyâre all ârelatedâ.
So today nic.at launches a new website, bringing together all its brands. Each brand is now clearly positioned, with its own objectives and core messages.
Building the site from scratch Mario ÃhlschlÃ¤ger, the technical manager for the website relaunch project, said they âended up writing over half a million lines of codeâ as well as a complete rethinking of âthe whole âloginâ situation.â User friendliness was improves, processes simplified for customers and adapting the framework.
âSo calling it a ârelaunchâ wouldnât be accurate. We werenât able to use any of the old packages so we basically had to rebuild the site from scratch.â
And for Europeans, nic.at is even giving away beer coasters and asking for photos of how theyâll be used, some of which will be posted on their Facebook page with prizes up for grabs for the most liked photos.
Thereâs more information on the rebranding exercise in the latest nic//report, available for download from:
The upcoming Domaining Europe conference is set to see some big domain names up for auction, including whiskey.com and gastronomy.com.
The whiskey.com domain name is set to go for a big seven-figure sum given the sale of whisky.com in 2014 for $3.1 million. Whiskey and whisky are the same thing, with the former common in Ireland the United States while the latter is used in all other whiskey producing countries.
In addition to the above 2 domains, sevilla.com, harddrives.com, zut.com and the recently released 5.at, which sold for €9,200 when it was auctioned for the very first time when nic.at sold over 350 short domains through auction, domains that were released for the very first time.
As well as the auction, there are speeches from Verisign, Rolf Larsen on “What Can a Registry Do for Domain Investors?”, a Healthy Domain Report panel moderated by eco’s Lars Steffen, a panel looking at top level domains, how to make money from keyword domains, internet governance, a presentation on the success of .club, how brands are using their TLDs and a Verisign insight on their .cc and .tv, among quite a few others.
Tickets are still available for the Domaining Europe 2017 conference, which will be held in Berlin from 14 to 17 May. The conference is aimed at domain industry professionals, investors and anyone interested in the industry. Currently conference tickets are available for €395 plus VAT (including catering) or VIP tickets that additionally include side events and a sightseeing boat trip, with €100 going to the Charity for Hope Children Centre, are available for €650 (plus VAT).
For more information on the agenda, speakers and even to register, go to:
A number of top level domain registries are looking for more business opportunities. Some such as nic.at have ventured into providing backend registry services for new gTLDs. Others such as SIDN, the .nl registry has expanded by co-creating a DNS billing service in the Netherlands and taking over an e-identity company with 12 million users.
And DENIC, the .de country code top level domain manager, has also been expanding. Last month they announced it had won the contract with EURid to provide shared use of its global anycast mesh for the .eu and Cyrillic script .ею (xn--e1a4c) TLDs.
This week DENIC had a further announcement. They are extending their business activities to include a back-up storage service for the business data of ICANN-accredited registrars (Registrar Data Escrow). On 15 March a contract was signed with ICANN that included several unprecedented conditions that are different from any previous agreement. Not only do the applicable law and place of jurisdiction terms allow for non-US legislation and venues, as far as the relationship between registrar and data escrow provider is concerned. But for the first time within the ICANN escrow context, full compliance with the applicable European data protection regulations is achieved.
The accreditation by ICANN as a Third-Party Provider for Registrar Data Escrow (TPP RDE) was obtained by DENIC last year. Now the details of the obligatory tripartite agreement between ICANN, DENIC and registrars as the users of the RDE service could be finalised. The contract stands out from other parties’ escrow agreements with ICANN by not being governed exclusively by Californian law but also allowing German law as the applicable legislation for the contractual relationship between a registrar and DENIC as escrow provider – provided ICANN is not affected. Moreover, the registrar and DENIC may define upon contract conclusion if, in case of dispute, they will seek redress in a German court or a Swiss court of arbitration.
During the recent ICANN meeting in Copenhagen, Denmark, the first tripartite agreement was signed by Akram Atallah, President of ICANN’s Global Domains Division (GDD), DENIC COO Andreas Musielak and Marcus Fauré, Managing Director of the German registrar Global Village, on 15 March 2017. Global Village – together with another five registrars – had already used DENIC's Escrow Service in the last few months within the scope of a Friends & Family test scenario. The agreement with ICANN now cleared the way for concluding an official contract.
“Escrow Services is an interesting new business field for us. Providing a back-up service for sensitive data will further enhance our international reputation as a trustworthy partner,” said DENIC COO Andreas Musielak expressing his satisfaction about the latest development.
“Given the legal uncertainty with regard to data transfers to the Unites States, the DENIC Escrow Service is a very attractive option, also and in particular to all registrars based in Europe.”
“In the current tense political climate, protecting the data of European domain holders has become ever more important. I am relieved that, being a contracting partner of DENIC, I will now be able to store the data of my customers in a legally safe place in Europe, without having to entrust them to an enterprise that is competing with my own company,” said Global Village Managing Director Marcus Fauré. “With DENIC, I now have the ideal partner for the technical implementation by my side.”
DENIC’s Board is confident that the ongoing contract negotiations with ICANN for approving DENIC to also provide Registry Data Escrow (RyDE) for the New gTLDs will now come to a close soon, too. New gTLD registry operators are also subject to the obligation to use escrow services.
As a neutral, not-for-profit cooperative, DENIC is neither a registrar nor a gTLD (backend) operator, and thus does not compete with the potential customers of its Escrow Service. 20 years of experience in operating one of the largest TLD zones worldwide (.de) with more than 16 million domains make DENIC one of the leading experts in domain management, at an international level. State-of-the art cryptographic algorithms and multiple redundancies safeguard the secure transmission and storage of all domain registration data. Storage will be exclusively in data centers located in Europe (i.e. in Frankfurt and Amsterdam), in compliance with European data protection regulations. DENIC's certifications according to ISO/IEC 27001:2013 ISMS and ISO 22301:2012 BCM standards are another guarantee for maximum information security and availability.
At the recent Domain Pulse conference in Vienna, there were discussions on how domain name registration growth rates for ccTLDs has been rather stagnant for a few years. One of the issues raised was what opportunities were there for ccTLD registries to look outside their own market for business opportunities.
SIDN, the .nl registry, has expanded by co-creating a DNS billing service in the Netherlands and taking over an e-identity company with 12 million users. Others, such as the Austrian country code Top Level Domain registry nic.at, have set up as new generic Top Level Domain registries.
And DENIC, the German ccTLD manager, has also been expanding. This week the .de registry announced it has won the contract to provide shared use of its global anycast mesh for the .eu and Cyrillic script .ею (xn--e1a4c) TLDs. DENIC now provides DNS slave services covering some 6.5m domains for seven TLD clients, in addition to running its own .de nameservice for more than 16.1m domains under management (DUM). Providing the service for EURid more than doubles the provision of this service to other TLDs and increases its contribution to the security and stability of the internet as a whole. The provision of the services to EURid is to date DENIC’s largest customer.
The improved network performance achieved by anycast routing eventually benefits every user of the Internet: via reduced processing times of DNS queries, multiplied back-up capacities to deal with load peaks, and enhanced resilience for optimum DDoS mitigation.
Third-party TLD operators running ccTLDs, gTLDs or Brand TLDs can benefit from DENIC’s DNS anycast slave services since 2010, under a cost-sharing scheme, using either the full set of DENIC’s authoritative global name servers, as a primary service, or picking dedicated ones as a supplement to their own network, in order to enlarge its footprint, resilience, and robustness. Growing numbers of customers and DUM also result in economies of scale for all connected TLD users which makes the shared use of DENIC’s network even more attractive.
Next to providing global anycast network presence, DENIC’s DNS slave service includes 24/7 monitoring and support as well as customised web APIs for advanced monitoring and statistics to meet clients’ operational needs.
Presently, the shared global anycast mesh run by DENIC includes 12 locations spread across the EMEA region (Amsterdam, Berlin, Frankfurt am Main, Moscow, Stockholm, Vienna), Asia Pacific (Beijing, Hong Kong, Seoul) and the Americas (Los Angeles, Miami, São Paulo). These locations are pooled in one IPv6 and two IPv4 anycast clouds, respectively.
Sited close to leading Internet exchange points, all network locations use high bandwidths, support IPv6 and are fully DNSSEC-enabled.
Sales of .de domains, the German ccTLD, took 6 of the top 10 sales including the top 2 sales to dominate the weekly Domain Name Journal chart of top reported sales for the week ending 11 December.
There were none of the 6 or 7 figure sales that have regularly topped the chart in previous weeks though. The top sale went to uh.de, selling for â¬47,600 ($50,456) in a private sale while jc.de came in second selling for â¬20,000 ($21,200) in a private sale brokered by Sedo and third was bonus.net selling for â¬14,875 ($15,768) through Sedo.
Overall there 7 .de sales in the top 20 and only 4 .com sales, 3 for .at and 2 .net sales as well as one each for .eu, .org, .to and .co. On the aftermarket side of things Sedo had a hand in 14 sales and 5 sales were private including one involving Sedo.
To check out the Domain Name Journal chart of top reported sales in more detail for the week ending 11 December, go to:
Following a Sunrise period and an auction where more than 1,000 domain names were sold, the Austrian registry, nic.at released the remainder of the 4,965 short domains it made available to the public on 6 December at standard registration fees.Those domain names registered in the Sunrise period and bought at auction were also delegated at the same time.Over the three auctions held in November more than 1,000 of the 4,965 single and double digit .at domain names that were originally released were sold for over $1 million. Remaining domain names are available for registration on a first come, first served basis.The top five sales were all recorded in the first auction with c.at being the biggest sale, selling for €56,000 followed by 1.at (€26,008), at.at (€20,500), e.at (€12,500) and b.at (€11,100).
The third and final of the short domain name auction for the Austrian ccTLD .at has concluded. In the final auction 7.at was the top sale, selling for €8,877 followed by x.at (€8,077) and s.at (€7,877).Over the three auctions held in November more than 1,000 of the 4,965 single and double digit .at domain names that were originally released were sold for over $1 million. In the first round trademark holders got first preference. Remaining domains went for auction and the remaining domain names will be available for registration on a first come, first served basis on 6 December, the same date all domains already allocated will go live.In this third auction, Sedo who conducted the auction reported there were nearly 4,000 placed bids and more than 350 domain names sold.The top five sales were all recorded in the first auction with c.at being the biggest sale, selling for €56,000 followed by 1.at (€26,008), at.at (€20,500), e.at (€12,500) and b.at (€11,100).