Cybersquatters ‘could profit’ from domain rule change

As of last week, a shorter “.au” suffix became available as an alternative to the widely used “.com.au” or its variants such as “.net.au” and “.gov.au”.

The Australian Cyber ​​Security Center said anyone with a local connection to Australia (including businesses, associations and individuals) could register the new category from March 24.

Co-chairman of the ATO’s Cyber ​​Security Stewardship Group, CA ANZ’s Michael Croker, said cybercriminals would see an opportunity to register versions of existing domains using the new suffix, with potential huge downsides for users. companies.

“The brand recognition generated by websites is huge,” he said. “Your customers have come to trust the communications you send them and you don’t want cybersquatters to know about your marketing strategy.”

The ACSC recommends that all Australian businesses with existing domain names register their “.au” equivalents by September 20, 2022.

“If a business does not reserve its direct equivalent .au domain name within this six-month period, that name will be made available to the public on a first-come, first-served basis,” he said. .

Mr Croker said most accounting firms had a website with the ‘.com.au’ ending and while they could continue to use it, it was essential to stay one step ahead of digital criminals .

“Register for the new domain name category and use the transition time to market the subtle but important name change to .au, he said.

“They have a transition period where they can get ahead of anyone else and register their shorthand domain name – and they should get cracked.

“Small businesses that don’t have an IT advisor or in-house capability should engage with this.”

The ACSC said more information and registration for a new name change is available at auda.org.au/au-domain-names:

Cybersquatters ‘could profit’ from domain rule change

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Last update: March 26, 2022

Posted: March 28, 2022

Philip King

Philip King

Philip King is editor of Accountants Daily and SMSF Adviser, the leading sources of news, information and educational content for professionals in the accountancy and SMSF industries.

Philip joined the titles in March 2022 and brings extensive experience from various roles at The Australian national broadsheet daily, most recently as Automotive Editor. His background also includes spells in various consumer and trade magazines.

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