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Internet Grows to More Than 205 Million Domain Names, More TLDs Coming

Domains Names RegisteredAccording to a report from VeriSign today, 2010 closed with a base of 205.3 million domain name registrations globally across all Top Level Domains (TLDs). Registrations for 2010 grew by 12.1 million, or 6.3 percent year over year. According to my math, that averages 33,150 new domain registrations per day.

Domains Names RegisteredAccording to a report from VeriSign today, 2010 closed with a base of 205.3 million domain name registrations globally across all Top Level Domains (TLDs). Registrations for 2010 grew by 12.1 million, or 6.3 percent year over year. According to my math, that averages 33,150 new domain registrations per day.

The report notes that of the total number of registered domains, the base of Country Code Top Level Domains (ccTLDs) accounted for 80.1 million domain names by the end of 2010. Of the more than 240 different ccTLD extensions available globally, the top 10 ccTLDs accounted for 61 percent of the registrations.

205 Million is large number of domains, how many of these resolve actual sites? It really depends, because many “sites” are actually holding or “parked” pages that offer essentially no value to visitors. After some analysis, VeriSign estimated that 88 percent of .com and .net domain names resolve to a Web site, though this figure includes parked domain sites, so you can pretty much discard that if you’re looking for a number of active and “true” Web sites.

VeriSign’s Domain Name Industry Brief also highlighted two major changes to the Internet’s addressing system:

1. The introduction of new generic top-level domains

2. The ramp up to IPv6, something we have covered a few times at SecurityWeek.

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is nearing completion of its gTLD launch plan, which could introduce hundreds of new generic top-level domains (gTLDs) to the naming system. VeriSign says that ICANN could start reviewing applications for new gTLDs by summer. Within months of the launch — perhaps by early 2012 — Internet users may very well have their choice of an unprecedented array of top-level domains, from consumer domains like .shop and .bank to geographic ones like .nyc and .london.

Parked vs. Live DomainsInfrastructure providers, service operators and content providers are ramping up preparedness for the deployment of Internet Protocol Version 6 (IPv6).

IPv6 is designed to replace the longstanding Internet Protocol Version 4 (IPv4). The last IPv4 addresses have been allocated, but it’s expected to take several months for regional registries to consume all their remaining regional IPv4 address pools, with recent trends suggesting that Asia, Europe, and North America will exhaust in that order within a month or two on either side of July 1, 2011, according to the IPv6 Forum. Transition planning and adoption of IPv6 is critical to the on-going stability and growth of Internet Protocol based ICT, not only in the public Internet but in every facet of your office, home and mobile electronic existence where TCP/IP and other IP protocols are used. Training, management, support, billing, security and applications development need to be engaged to allow you to be IPv6 ready.

The the 2010 fourth quarter Domain Name Industry Brief can be downloaded here.

Related Reading: It’s Official. IPv4 is Out, Time to Transition to IPv6

Related Reading: Is IPv6 Part of your Risk Management Framework?

Written By

For more than 10 years, Mike Lennon has been closely monitoring the threat landscape and analyzing trends in the National Security and enterprise cybersecurity space. In his role at SecurityWeek, he oversees the editorial direction of the publication and is the Director of several leading security industry conferences around the world.

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