The .is (Iceland) registry ISNIC has suspended a domain name due to being linked with the terrorist organisation Islamic State.The khilafah.is domain was suspended yesterday as it was used “for the website of a known terrorist organisation. The majority of ISNIC’s board made the decision … on the grounds of Article 9 of ISNIC’s Rules on Domain Registration, which states: ‘The registrant is responsible for ensuring that the use of the domain is within the limits of Icelandic law as current at any time.'”Never before, the registry notes, has ISNIC suspended a domain on grounds of a website’s content.ISNIC head Jens Petur Jensen told Iceland’s media that this was the first time they had suspended a domain because of its content.”We have no experience with this… we have always pointed out that it’s none of our business. That the Islamic State had their domain under ‘.is’ was something we feared because of the abbreviation,” Jensen said.According to New Zealand’s Stuff website “documentation for the web listing shows it was registered to Suite 4551, 17B Farnham St, Parnell, Auckland. Its owner is described as Azym Abdullah.””On the New Zealand Companies Office listings, the suite is the registered office for at least 63 companies, including a number that have been struck off.”Under New Zealand’s company system, registration can be done online with virtual offices providing a legal entity for mail drops.”It is not the first time New Zealand virtual offices and shell companies have been caught up in international security.”
Following the seizure of its .sx domain name, The Pirate Bay has once more been forced to change its domain, this time moving to .ac, the ccTLD for Ascension Island.Its previous domain with the Sint Maarten ccTLD was shut down Monday night. The Pirate Bay has previously used the ccTLDs of Iceland (.is), Sweden (.se), Greenland (.gl). The latest stop with .ac is only temporary though and is the fifth TLD used in 2013.”Fearing a domain seizure by the Swedish authorities The Pirate Bay quickly switched to a Greenland-based domain in April, later hopping to Iceland, and eventually landing .SX domains as other problems became apparent,” reported Torrent Freak.”The AC domain is directly connected to the UK, so it’s just a quick stop there,” a Pirate Bay insider told Torrent Freak. After solving some technical issues the infamous torrent site plans to move to the Peruvian .PE ccTLD.The latest seizure has come about following pressure from the entertainment industry, the .sx ccTLD appearing to seize the domain, Torrent Freak also reported. “The torrent site itself hasn’t been taken down and has quickly relocated to a new address on Ascension Island’s .AC ccTLD.””It’s seems possible that the domain seizure is connected to pressure applied by Dutch anti-piracy group BREIN, which represents a variety of copyright holders,” Torrent Freak also reported.”Last month BREIN sent a letter to the contact email address for The Pirate Bay’s domain, which is registered to site co-founder Fredrik Neij. In their letter BREIN pointed out that the site infringes on the rights of copyright holders worldwide.”The group added that the .SX domain is controlled by the Dutch part of Sint Maarten, suggesting that BREIN has jurisdiction over it.””We expressly point out that by registering domain names and using these and/or allowing these to be used by The Pirate Bay, you infringe on the rights of Rights Owners. Therefore, the Rights Owners hold you liable for the damages that they have suffered and will suffer from your actions,” the letter read. The letter threatened a €25,000 per day fine if the site remained online.
It may have a reputation for being one of the TLDs with the most phishing domains, but the number of .tk (Tokelau) domain names under management continues to soar. Registrations grew by 13.9 percent in the quarter ending August, according to the latest Centr DomainWire StatReport, with total registrations reaching 19.1 million for the ccTLD whose domain names are given away for free.The report notes .de (Germany) continues to progressively grow and maintain its second place with 15.5m DUM while .uk (United Kingdom) comes in third with 10.6m. But .cn (China) continues to rapidly grow, again, and is now back to 7.8m.Within Europe, at the end of August 2013 there were just over 65.1m DUM while over the past 12 months, overall net growth is 5.9 percent – an increase of around 3.6m. The largest contribution to the increase came from .ru with 780,000.The ccTLDs with the largest growth rate within Europe were .me (Montenegro) where registrations grew by 5.2 percent in the quarter ending August, followed by .ru (Russian Federation – 4.1%), Cyprus (.cy – 3.8%), .pt (Portugal – 3.4%) and then .is (Iceland – 2.9%).The report also shows the number of domain names per person. This statistic is skewed by how the ccTLD is marketed, with .me ranking highly due to it being marketed more as a gTLD. The Centr report shows that .li (Liechtenstein) has the highest penetration with 181 domains per 100 people for the 37,000 people in the country, followed by .me with 116. Then follows .nl (Netherlands – 32), .ch (Switzerland – 23), .dk (Denmark – 22), .de (19) and then .uk (17).The report also notes that growth rates in European ccTLDs have slowed over the past 12 months. The growth rate for the year to August 2013 was 5.9 percent (compared to the 12 months to April 2012 whose growth rate was 6.6 percent) but this was on average 2.5 percent higher than for gTLDs globally. The average monthly growth of all European ccTLDs is 0.47 percent. Globally the number of ccTLD registrations grew by one percentage point in the 12 months to August 2013, while gTLDs share dropped by the corresponding percentage point.Marketing is also looked at in the report, with how ccTLDs are marketed. Registries use traditional as well as new marketing tools, as shows the below graph which is based on a June 2013 survey amongst CENTR members. The same survey shows that a large majority of the registries have, or are developing, a formal marketing plan. The traditional ‘offline’ channels such as printed media, TV and radio are used by several registries while others cooperate with registrars with sponsorship arrangements and co-marketing initiatives and programmes.The report is available for download from centr.org/system/files/share/domainwire_stat_report_2013_2.pdf.
Youâve heard of VIPs (Very Important Persons). Now ISNIC, the registry for .IS domain names, has launched VIDs, or Very Important Domains!
The change, which the Icelandic registry describes as âa very important changeâ is designed to increase the security of .IS domains further.
VID’s will get special treatment, especially regarding rights and renewals. So called VID insurance means that a VID’s registration never expires accidentally. It will also be harder to transfer VID’s to new registrants, since it will require confirmation from the registrants themselves, either digitally or a signed confirmation.
To prepare for this change, ISNIC are asking for domain registrants to update the registrants email at ISNIC, which can be done under “Modify Registration” on My Page. Only the administrative contact can edit the registrant information. In the northern autumn, all administrative contacts and registrants with a registered email address will get an email where these changes will be explained in detail.
The .IS registration rules (.IS domain policy) have been reorganised and rewritten. No substantial changes have been made but the wording has been updated and modernised.
The rewriting of the policies were done by a local law student SteindÃ³r Dan Jensen in cooperation with the ISNIC staff. The new rules will come into effect on 1 November 2011.
For a PDF of the new domain name registration rules, see:
The registration of wikileaks.is has caused the Icelandic registry, ISNIC, to issue a statement stating under what conditions they would delete the domain name.
The registry states the answer is simple – such an action would require a formal court order from an Icelandic court. But in 25 years of the organisation’s existence ISNIC says they have never been handed such a verdict about any .IS domain during its close to 25 years of history.
This is similar to Switzerland, where the registry also issued a statement stating the conditions on which they would delete the wikileaks.ch domain name. The registry there, SWITCH, also issued a statement on the issue saying that for them to delete a domain name in such circumstances would require a statutory decision, such as a court order, for the deletion of a domain name.
And similarly to the Swiss registry, ISNIC stated that ISNIC it “is not responsible for the registrant’s usage of his/her domain, the contents of email sent from the domain’s email addresses (e.g. firstname.lastname@example.org) or the content of the domain’s web pages (e.g. www.wikileaks.is). It is ISNIC’s duty and prime function to maintain uninterrupted service to all .IS-domains, at all times, anywhere in the world. Only Icelandic authorities, armed with a court order, can order ISNIC to delete or close down a particular .is-domain. This has, as said before, never happened.”
For more information and to read the ISNIC statement in full, see www.isnic.is/y/news/view/id/204.
The SWITCH statement and more information on .CH domain names is available from www.switch.ch/about/news/2010/wikileaks.
To register your .IS or .CH domain name, check out Europe Registry here.
[news release] The Icelandic ministry of Communications has published a proposed a new law concerning the country code top level domain .is. The proposed new law also covers any future top level domains that in some way reference or are related to Iceland . For almost 25 years (since hi.is, the first .is domain was registered) the rules of ISNIC have been applied to the registration of .is domains. They will continue to apply but in the future (if the proposed bill is signed into law) will be backed up by laws and regulations.
ISNIC encourages the registrants of .is domains to study the proposed bill, and accompanying comments. The proposed new law about .is, in Icelandic, is available here.
ISNIC has several reservations, but it is our wish that the new law will result in better protection for the registrants and preservation of the quality of the .is neighbourhood. ISNIC has proposed amendments to better protect the independence of the domain, as an address on the internet, but not regulate and restrict so as to limit future development.
ISNIC is also of the opinion that questions regarding content stored on websites are unrelated to the domain itself. Domains are first and foremost addresses on the Internet. Domains as such do not have any content.
Last week it was the announcement that .NL had passed the four million registration mark, but not every ccTLD is so large and smaller milestones are just as momentous. So the announcement that .IS, the Icelandic ccTLD, had passed the 30,000 registrations marks is probably equally momentous to them.
The 30,000th registration was coupon.is, registered to Aspiro AS in Oslo Norway.