National News Update
New auDA changes could cost traders there .au Domain Name Licences.
New changes and rules are coming to Australia’s domain name industry usage rules this year. The new rules could mean the loss of website owner’s domain names for some traders.
These new changes will impact and affect sole traders who have restructured their businesses with sub licence domain names to other users.
Despite the changes being publicised on the auDA website many domain name owners are unaware of the new changes. And these changes will come as a massive shock as business owners lose their domain names. Due to this, websites will also lose positions and rankings in Google which may have taken years and hundreds of thousands of dollars spent in search engine optimisation costs to build domain authority and reputation.
The auDA, who governs the Australian domain name space, is making new changes to domain name licensing rules starting on the 12th of April this year. The auDA’s role is to protect .au domain names so they remain available for legitimate Australian businesses.
Businesses operators need to understand that when you register a Australian domain name it is not purchase. It is actually a license from auDA.
The auDA is the Australian governing body which all domain name registration companies must comply with the rules and regulations in respect to the registration of a new domain name.
A domain name licence can be revoked if a trader is not using the domain name in accordance with the auDA guidelines.
The auDA is introducing new changes to the rules that govern .au domain names in April and will be also changing the rules for who can be entitled to register an Australian domain name. These new rules will also reflect how a business owner will be permitted to use an .au name.
One of these significate changes state that a domain owner is not allowed to sub-licence a .au domain name to anyone else unless that entity is a “related body corporate” with an Australian presence. The auDA refers to this as the “third party” rule.
If domain registrants are found to be in breach of this third party rule, the licence it holds to the domain name can be revoked and then the domain name will be deleted. Under the current rules this is known as what is called a “Policy Delete”.
These new upcoming policies and changes to the rules will surly create a raft of protests and appeals when the changes are implemented and become effective. It is predicted that this is also going to cause confusion for some business owners in the internet community.
One thing that is already very common is for people to start a business as sole trader using there ABN numbers. However, if the sole trader restructures into a company and then allows the company control the domain they will fall under the “third party” rule. This is because the company is not a “related body corporate” under the new rules.
This means that the .au domain can be taken off the sole trader under a Policy Delete with 30 days prior notice.
We strongly suggest that you take these steps to avoid losing your domain name if you feel you may fall under the new rules
1. Sole Traders: When restructuring your domain name you can transfer it to the new entity name instead letting the new entity use the domain name.
2. Companies: We highly advise that you don’t’ give control of your domain name to a different entity unless that entity has an Australian presence and they are directly related to the company who holds the domain.
3. Foreign Companies/Traders: You must maintain an Australian presence either through a trade mark corresponding exactly to the .au domain name.
4. Upon the restructure or purchase of a new business or company you should make sure the domain name is transferred to the correct legal entity. This must be done prior to the other business or company closing down.
Business and domain name holders who are confused over the new rule changes should immediately seek legal advice as soon as possible from an experienced technology and cyber law advisor. Your domain name registrar “Domain Registration DNS” can only provide basic information regarding these new guidelines. We do not and cannot provide official legal advice upon the removal of a domain name licesnse. However, we are here to assist you around the clock to help explain these new rules.
Domain Registration DNS
Phone : +1800 979 673
Email : [email protected]