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.xxx Registrations to Include Malware Scan; Sunrise Periods Announced

Issued: July 01 2011

ICM Registry, the company behind .xxx, has announced a partnership with one of the world’s largest security technology companies in a deal worth US$8 million. The deal means that for the first time, websites will be scanned for malware daily, with the cost underwritten by the domain name registry.

The integrated service will be automatically included with every .xxx domain name registration, meaning every .xxx domain will be scanned for vulnerabilities such as SQL injection, browser exploits and phishing sites, reputational analysis and malware, the company said in a statement. The service uses technology based on in-depth expertise, drawing on a global network of 100 countries, and internal research and systems that are updated regularly with the latest threats and discoveries.

“Malware is a growing issue on the internet, with the number of websites hosting malware increasing dramatically year-on-year,” said Stuart Lawley, CEO of ICM Registry. “This partnership is a milestone for .xxx and will help create a safer internet for everyone to enjoy. This has never been done before and further supports our aim to create a clearly defined web address for adult entertainment, as free as possible from fraud or malicious computer viruses.”

Webmasters will also have the potential to make savings by not buying their own malware software for .xxx domains, which in turn also frees up space on their servers, Lawley noted.

“For consumers who wish to browse adult entertainment sites, it provides reassurance they are automatically protected from the risk of viruses, hackers, exploits and malware. They can feel confident that the .xxx adult entertainment websites they are visiting are safe and secure. This increases webmasters ability to offer a socially responsible and safe place for their clients, helping to build trust, credibility and loyalty online.”

ICM Registry has also announced that there will be two concurrent sunrise periods later this year for trademark owners wishing to either opt-in or optout of the new registrations.

“During a 30-day period starting in early September 2011 known as the Sunrise A period, members of the adult entertainment industry will be able to opt-in and reserve a new .xxx domain name if they have verifiable trademark rights and/or already own and operate an identical second level domain name in the existing TLDs, such as .com,” said Nicole B Emmons, a Baker & McKenzie lawyer based in Dallas.

“Concurrently with Sunrise A, a Sunrise B 30-day period will run allowing brand owners to opt-out and block their trademarks from being registered as a .xxx domain name by a third party.”

Emmons says that trademark owners will only be able to opt-out during this one 30-day period. “For those trademark owners who choose to opt-out during Sunrise B, the opt-out will last ten years and will incur a one-time fee of approximately US$200 to US$300 per domain registered.”

In order to qualify for Sunrise B, a party must own a current trademark registration from any jurisdiction where bona fide commerce is conducted, and the opt-out must correspond to the entire text of a word mark or to the complete text of a word plus design mark, she says. If a party does not own a trademark registration, it will not be possible to opt-out during the Sunrise B period.

“Once successfully opted-out, your registered .xxx domains will resolve to static webpages that indicate that the names are not available for registration. A WHOIS search for any registered .xxx domain names will list standard registry information,” says Emmons.

Two weeks after the end of Sunrise A and Sunrise B, a 14-day Landrush registration period will begin for members of the adult entertainment industry, which will be followed by the General Availability period where the remaining domain names will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

“It is very important for trademark owners wishing to prevent their brands from being registered as .xxx domain names to protect their brands by taking advantage of the Sunrise B opt-out period this September,” says Emmons. While trademark owners must wait until the Sunrise B period in September to opt-out and block the desired .xxx domain names, the ICM Registry is currently allowing trademark owners to pre-register their desired .xxx domains at no cost at


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