The Domain Act and Self-Regulation

Background information on the regulation of top level domains in Denmark.

The Domain Act

Domain names have come to be part of the communication infrastructure, which is of decisive importance to both public and private users, but especially to the many companies that are communicating and trading to an increasing extent with the surrounding world via websites on the Internet.

In the light of these developments, the Danish Parliament (the Folketing) on 16 June 2005 passed the Act on Top Level Domains Specifically Allocated to Denmark (known as the Domain Act). The Act came into force on 1 July 2005.

Dynamic and High-Quality Development in the Community

The purpose of the Act is to promote dynamic and high-quality development within the Danish Internet community by providing availability, transparency, efficiency and security in relation to the Top Level Domains (TLDs) specifically allocated to Denmark. Under the Act, the .dk TLD will be managed according to the provisions of the Act.

Self-Regulation by the Internet community

So far, the administration of the .dk TLD has been undertaken by means of self-regulation. The Danish Internet Forum (DIFO) has been in charge of the administration of the TLD via its subsidiary DK Hostmaster A/S since 1 July 1999. DIFO has prepared various guidelines, including rules for registering domain names under .dk and has appointed a complaints board regarding domain names under .dk.

Tender to be Registry of .dk

Under the Domain Act, administration of the .dk TLD is to be put out to tender. The first tender has been conducted and the authorisation to administer the .dk TLD has been issued to DIFO.

The authorisation runs for a period of six years with an option of two times two years extension. The Danish Business Authority will supervise DIFO's compliance to obligations according to both the authorisation and regulations cf. the Domain Act.