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Domain Name News

End Of An Era For Australian Domains Approaches

June 4, 2018

This month is the last AusRegistry will act in the role of Registry Operator of the .au name space.

In 2001, au Domain Administration, .au's administrator and industry self-regulatory policy body, called a tender for the implementation of a secure and streamlined registry system. AusRegistry was the successful bidder and remained the registry operator from that point.

AusRegistry currently manages all current and open second level .au names, including: com.au; and it also manages the restricted government (gov.au) and education (edu.au) extensions. AusRegistry's role includes keeping information on the party responsible for each domain name (registrant), information that's available via the WHOIS service, and the systems that convert a name to an Internet Protocol (IP) address (DNS service).

However, this changes on July 1, when Afilias takes over the reins - a change called one of the biggest in the history of .au. 

In 2017, auDA conducted a tender process to select a registry operator and received nine responses. After an extensive assessment of the bids, Afilias was chosen.

This isn't the company's first rodeo - Afilias already supports 13 other country code Top Level Domains (ccTLDs) and the firm began operations in July 2001 with the launch of .info

Currently the company is finishing up on installing new DNS “nodes” all over Australia and setting up its 20-person office in Melbourne, specifically for .au registry operations.

So what does this change means for registrants of .au names and what actually happens on June 30?

"While this is the big “transition day,” internet users in Australia won’t notice a thing," says the company. "Afilias has managed many such transitions, so no one needs to worry about whether sites will still work—this will be a non-event."

More information on the transition can be found on Afilias' Australian site.

"Afilias will help auDA ensure the .au namespace maintains its great global reputation for reliability and security," said auDA earlier this year.

Note: a registry operator doesn't provide registration services, those functions are carried out by a registrar or reseller.

Related: A Brief History Of .AU.

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