DNC Newsletter - August 2020



August 2020 

Message from the Commissioner

Kia ora, 

The .nz Policy Panel wants you to have your say on the future of .nz. 

Should .nz only be for New Zealanders? How should .nz respond to online illegality? What are the best practice self-regulation systems and processes that need to be in place? These are just some of the questions being asked of people. You can make a submission here.

This month we have also been supporting the Internet and Policy Network alongside 30 other senior-level global key actors from governments, technical operators, and civil society on producing transborder resources to assist DNS Operators in identifying and remediating technical abuse in the DNS. 

The work is a significant investment designed to help agencies collaborate across borders when suspending domain names for infrastructure abuse. The evaluation methods and safeguards will be useful reference materials for submitters to the .nz policy review. 

We’ve also released our 2019/20 annual report which highlights our year in numbers, some dispute resolution case studies and international outreach efforts. 

I’m pleased with what we’ve been able to achieve this past year and am excited about the opportunities that a rewrite of the .nz policies will bring for .nz and domain name industry self regulation.

Ngā mihi,
Brent Carey


Keeping .nz fair for everyone a key focus for 2019/20

We’ve released our annual report.  Read it now including our year in review visual at page 10. 

Our contact centre resolved more than 1400 enquiries in the 2019-2020 financial year. Typical enquiries were from frustrated consumers who haven’t been able to reach their service provider or have lost control of their domain name.

Our real-time feedback from our customer interactions over the year had a satisfaction rating of 84%. 

Together with the industry we suspended or cancelled more than 5000 domain names for invalid details.

And we had 24 complainants access our free mediation and determination services for domain name disputes.

.iwi.nz policy consultation

The Domain Name Commission together with the moderator of the .iwi.nz domain space Mr Karaitiana Taiuru are consulting with the 103 .iwi.nz registrants throughout August to have input into a new criteria for the .iwi.nz moderation policy.  

We welcome the opportunity to work closely with Mr Taiuru on these important changes. 

Come join our team (applications close 12 August) 

We’re on the look out for a Business Analyst to help us with our current and future state processes. This is an exciting new role which will help us embed changes arising from our regulatory review, infrastructure and policy reviews.          

Customer service update

Enquiries have spiked in July. July numbers (totalling 174) are higher than May and June. Any’s (our chatbot) conversational score for July has jumped up to 3.5 / 5 and Any managed to answer 182 queries this month. Our knowledge base is handling 55% of incoming inquiries now. This helps us be more accessible to consumers after hours and manages demand into our contact centre. Contact staff can leave Any to handle the basics and focus on resolving more complex issues. 

Ongoing fight with fake web shops and phishing attacks

Registering domain names and associating them with fake webshops is a global and local problem. We don't therefore expect the fake webshop problem to be resolved any time soon and are committed to working with law enforcement and consumer protection agencies to tackle the problem. 

In July, we suspended 38 domain names for fake registration details associated with fake webshops. 

Post COVID-19 we’ve seen scammers up to their usual tricks of registering new domain names or using expired brand names domain names and associating them with a website offering goods and services unrelated to the domain name. 

We are keeping a close watch on the supply chain industry, in particular with parcel delivery services. 

We have seen an increase in malicious domain name registrations against various organisations that deliver online goods and are working with these organisations and CERTNZ to guard against phishing attacks.

Self conflicted names

We continue to work on resolving self conflicted domain names between the shorter .nz version of registrants domain names.  Our outreach efforts to registrars and registrants has led to a reduction in the number of self conflicted domain names.

Next month the Commission will be resolving a number of self conflicts if the current registrant has not done so. 

The registrant will then have two months to register the short domain and if not it will be openly available for anyone on a first come first served basis. 

This will mean self conflicted domain names will no longer be a feature of the conflicted domain name set.

Overseas Investment Office consent needed for registrar changes

We have had it confirmed by the Overseas Investment Office that sales and change in control activity at registrars within the .nz domain name industry will require the consent of the Overseas Investment Office. This new requirement was triggered by a law change in late June 2020. 

We have incorporated this new requirement into our change of control processes. The Land Information New Zealand website has details of the law change and process to follow to gain their consent for overseas investment in New Zealand companies. 

Domain names in the name of democracy

We’ve published a new election themed blog post about domain name registration shenanigans at this time of year.  

You’ll find an overview of what election related enquiries we’ve been fielding these past few months. We’ve also included some tips for candidates and political parties on how to manage their domain name during this election cycle.

New website coming

Take our 4 question website survey and help us build our new website. It should only take a couple of minutes of your time.  

Answer anonymously or if you’d like a chance at winning one $100 prezzy card for your efforts, leave us your first name and contact details. We'll delete your personal information after the prize giving.  

Interesting links and media 



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