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auDA Enforces Policy Rules Against Cybersquatting

September 13, 2011

After a recent report in a Brisbane newspaper of cash to be made by registering celebrity domain names, .AU Domain Administration (auDA), the body that oversees the .au domain name space, investigated an incident mentioned and reminded registrants that such activity was not permitted.

The report highlighted an example of a name of a well known Australian model had been registered by a company, who then reportedly approached the model's representatives and offered to transfer the domain to her; according to the report, for free.

Unlike .com and other generic Top Level Domains (TLD's),  registration of Australian domain names are subject to strict eligibility criteria. Among the criteria is the stipulation that the registration of a domain name with the sole intent of offering it for sale or transfer to another party is prohibited.

"The purpose of the rule against resale is to prevent people from "cybersquatting" the names of well-known people and brands," said Chris Disspain, CEO of auDA.  "The Australian Internet community has made it clear, time and time again, that it values the high levels of trust and integrity that distinguish .au from other TLDs like .com."

auDA says investigated the incident and cancelled the registration of the domain name, which will now be deleted; meaning it will return to the "pool" and available for registration by eligible parties through the proper channels and process.

auDA also reminded Australian entities - whether individuals, companies or community organisations - who feel they have fallen victim to cybersquatting or typosquatting* in the .au space or other breaches of policy that they can lodge a formal complaint with auDA.

*Typosquatting is a form of cybersquatting whereby domain names that are misspellings of a brand or business are registered by parties not connected with that brand, usually for the purposes of monetary gain, either from advertising or attempted resale to the brand owner.


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