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New au. Domain Names Available in March 2022

New domain names are becoming available in Australia in addition to the existing “.com.au”, “.net.au” and “.org.au” namespaces from 24 March 2022.

Unlike the existing namespaces, .au domain names do not have to match the name of an individual, business or organisation, or alternatively identify the goods or services provided. The .au namespace will allow shorter, potentially more memorable domain names to be registered.

Applications must be made through .au Domain Administration-accredited registrars, are subject to auDA licensing rules, and the allocation process summarised below applies. This process should help to prevent domain name squatting. However, it relies on those with a legitimate interest in obtaining .au domain names being aware of the process and the timing issues, as described below.

Allocation of domain names:

Applications for .au domain names will be granted on a first come, first served basis from 24 March 2022, except where a corresponding domain name with an Australian namespace (e.g. com.au, net.au, org.au, edu.au and gov.au) (Corresponding AU Domain Name) already exists. In such cases, the .au domain name will be reserved for a six-month priority period during which only the owners of Corresponding AU Domain Names will be eligible to apply for the .au domain name (referred to as Priority Applications). For example, if the domain names yournamehere.com.au and yournamehere.gov.au already exist, the domain name yournamehere.au will be reserved until 24 September 2022.

Where there is only one owner of a Corresponding AU Domain Name and that owner makes a Priority Application, the .au domain name will be allocated to that applicant soon after the application date. Where there are two or more owners of Corresponding AU Domain Names but only one owner makes a Priority Application, the .au domain name will be allocated to the applicant soon after the priority period ends.

Where none of the owners of a Corresponding AU Domain Name make a Priority Application, the .au domain name will be available to anyone from 24 September 2022 on a first come, first served basis.

Recommendations:

Individuals, businesses and organisations interested in registering .au domain names where there is no Corresponding AU Domain Name should be quick to do so from 24 March 2022 or risk the domain name being allocated to someone else. If it is possible to obtain a Corresponding AU Domain Name before that date, they should consider doing so to obtain a priority right to the .au domain name.

If owners of Corresponding AU Domain Names would like to own an equivalent .au domain name, they should make sure to apply for the domain name between 24 March 2022 and 24 September 2022. If they do not, they risk the .au domain name being allocated to someone else.

For more information or to register your .au domain name, email [email protected] or give us a call on 08 9418 4119.

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