Registrar liberalizes ccTLD transfers


DNS Belgium, the Belgian domain name registrar, has adopted a new domain name transfer policy for names registered in the country-code top-level domain.

Until now, domain names ending in '.be' could be transferred only if (i) the domain name was transferred together with the business assets of the licensee, or (ii) the transfer was ordered through legal proceedings. The aim of this policy was to discourage cybersquatting, which was made easier in September 2000 when the domain name registration rules were changed so that it was no longer necessary to prove a link between the applicant and the name applied for.

However, a survey carried out at the end of 2001 revealed that trademark and domain name owners found the policy too restrictive. Accordingly, DNS Belgium has established a new policy, called 'trade domain'. Pursuant to this policy, upon receipt of a transfer application (which must be made through a registered agent), DNS Belgium will require the transferor and transferee to confirm, within one week, that they agree to the transfer.

Florence Verhoestraete, NautaDutilh, Brussels

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