December 2020 

Message from the Commissioner

Kia ora, 

In the lead up to Christmas, the Commission’s focus is on keeping .nz fair for everyone which includes a safe and healthy online experience. 

Make no mistake, there will be plenty of scammers around trying to use a fake webshop to entice New Zealanders to part with their hard-earned cash.   

That’s why we are devoting significant efforts to make our online .nz communities a better place. 

Running again through to 25 December is our #ShopSafeNZ campaign building on our anti-abuse efforts. 

The Commission believes with our anti-abuse awareness campaign and with our tools to better detect fake webshops combined with our suspension and reinstatement processes we are finding the delicate balance that can give the community confidence in a safer, strong domain name system (DNS).

Our online world is also continuing to change and mature and so must we. 

In the New Year, we will be launching our new website and piloting a new online dispute resolution service. This is the first significant overhaul of our digital and online experiences in more than 5 years.  

Our new website and online dispute resolution offering will help us better connect with our local communities and give consumers greater abilities to report problems and file disputes.

Finally thank you to our newsletter subscribers for your continued support. 

This is us signing off for 2020. Enjoy your summer break and catch you all refreshed in 2021. 

Ngā mihi

Brent Carey 

Updates from the team

Christmas period hours and dispute resolution hours 

The team is taking a much-needed break over the Christmas holidays. From 24 December to 5 January, we’ll have a skeleton crew working on queries. We will respond to all queries within 2 business days. 

Our chatbot, Any, will be online 24/7 eagerly waiting to answer any general enquiries too! 

The .nz dispute resolution service will also be closed for filings. The final working day will be 23 December 2020, with the service re-opening on Monday 11 January 2021. 

Meri Kirihimete me ngā mihi mo te tau hou – Brent, Ann, Dylan, Bex, Cameron, Anthony, and Vincent.

New Assistant Commissioner role (applications close 6 December) 

This person will support the Commissioner with setting up administrative legal processes and perform Senior Associate level contractual, commercial, and consumer work arising from the .nz policy reform agenda.

Details of the new Assistant Commissioner role are available from our recruitment agency Parker Bridge.

End users of our website feedback sought - volunteer testers

We are looking for six to eight volunteers to spend up to 60 minutes with us to give us some first impression and website navigation user feedback on our new website. 

Each person will receive a $100 prezzy card for their help. If you are available in January for a 1:1 interview, please let us know at

Holiday shoppers beware: shop safe .nz

This is the final month of our #ShopSafeNZ campaign. Thank you to our supporters who have helped us to spread the word about shopping safer online. 

To check out the campaign visit We’ve made available our social share cards online and encourage everyone to share them. 

We also have a new blog with 12 tips to shop safe online this holiday season.

For Industry 

Domain Name Commission approvals granted for change in control at Freeparking Group and Arq Group

This past month we have worked with a number of .nz registrars and the Overseas Investment Office to grant approval for changes in control at various Top 10 .nz registrars. These highlight significant changes to the .nz market not seen for many years.  

It is a requirement under our .nz contractual and policy framework for market participants to seek approval for any changes in control as part of any merger and acquisition activity.  

Dreamscape Networks trading as Crazy Domains has acquired New Zealand's Freeparking Group which includes the company’s brands Freeparking, Openhost, Discount Domains and Domains4less.  

Webcentral Group, recently known as the Arq Group that was formerly the company known as Melbourne IT, has been acquired by 5G Networks. 

All parties involved engaged and consulted with our office early on with their various acquisitions and we thank them for it. This assisted us with our due diligence and our decision-making under our change of control processes. 

While there are no immediate changes impacting .nz registrants and the .nz domain names under management, the Commission will be involved in the coming months as details of implementation changes become more widely understood.


Referrals from like minded agencies 

Over the past quarter, we have had many reports from agencies letting us know about problems with .nz domain names. 

Referrals from like minded agencies represent over 45% of our total domain name suspensions for the last quarter. We appreciate their support in keeping .nz fair for everyone. 

Ensuring agencies across New Zealand are aware of us and our role in following up reported problems with .nz domains is a key awareness raising activity of ours. 

If you are aware of any online consumer resources where we are not listed as an agency that can help with problems with .nz domain names please let us know. We will follow up with that agency to get listed in their resource.

Year to date in numbers

2020 year to date in numbers. 1,606 total enquiries, 4 new registrars, 1,536 domain name cancellations (DNCL led), 3 domain name mediations, 5 domain name expert decisions issued, 90,861 domain names flagged with privacy.

Interesting links from 2020 
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