.eu is celebrating 15th anniversary


    - David Goldstein -

    On 7 April, .eu celebrated 15 years since its launch way back in 2006. In that time it has grown to over 3.7 million registrations across the European Union and wider European Economic Area. EURid, the .eu registry, has also added the .ею (Cyrillic script) and .ευ (Greek script) country code top-level domain names. In total across the three TLDs there were 3,723,540 domain names as of late May, with .eu accounting for 3,719,463 registrations, making it the world’s ninth largest ccTLD, while there were 2,708 .ευ registrations and 1,369 for .ею.

    Established domain for EU citizens

    For .eu, registrations are spread across 138 countries, although outside the EU and EEA, individual registrants must be EU/EEA citizens. Businesses need to have a registered office within the EU/EEA. As of late May, the country with the most registrations was Germany (995,761 registrations), followed by the Netherlands (472,868), France (309,653), Italy (279,016) and Poland (233,707), being the only 5 countries with more than 200,000 registrations. The Czech Republic, Austria, Belgium, Spain and Portugal all account for more than 100,000 registrations and there are 28 countries with just one registration.

    And despite Britons becoming ineligible to register .eu domain names as of 1 January 2021, there are still over 54,000 domains registered to British individuals and businesses with a limited timeframe left for them to become eligible. Currently .eu domain names registered to British businesses and individuals are in a “suspended” status, meaning they cannot support any service such as email or a website. On 1 July 2021, any domain names for which the registrant has not shown they are eligible will move to a “withdrawn” status, meaning the domain name will be withdrawn from the zone file. Then any remaining domain names will be revoked on 1 January 2022 and become eligible for registration in coming months.

    The focus is on security

    Over the last 15 years, as with pretty much all registries, EURid has had a focus on the security of the domain names registered under each of the TLDs. This has involved implementing various solutions, the two main ones being Domain Name System Security Extensions (DNSSEC), an internet security protocol that helps to reduce the chance that visitors to a website are led to a fake or fraudulent webpage when typing its web address into their browser, and their Abuse Prevention and Early Warning System (APEWS), developed in collaboration with researchers from the University of Leuven, that protects the .eu space from malicious domain registrations.

    Award honours impressive websites

    To see how their domain names are being used, EURid conducted an analysis in November 2020. This involved a website categorisation exercise, with a webcrawler crawling 150,000 domain names, out of which 82.5% were found to be connected to a web server. Over half of these (77,760) had rich content (web pages with content generated by the user) websites. Of the domain names with rich content, 10,000 .eu websites were manually classified with 17.62% of these being used for trade and 11.91% for manufacturing. A further 8.73% were classified as being used by community groups, information technology (6.95%) and entertainment (6.86%).

    To celebrate the rich diversity of .eu registrations, there is a .eu Web Awards to celebrate the most impressive .eu websites.

    To find out if your trademarks and company names are still available under .eu and if you are eligible to register, contact our team.