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Kia ora 

It’s reporting season with our annual report and transparency report due out at the end of this month. At this time it’s important to take a moment to reflect on our partner ecosystem that does so much to help protect .nz from threats. 

In Microsoft President Brad Smith’s book, “Tools and Weapons,” he asks the whole community to proactively protect our shared online spaces; the idea that “it takes a village” is a prevalent theme throughout his book. 

To protect the .nz online space, which is navigated by a number of people and organisations, that village mentality is what it takes to keep ahead of those who mean to not play by the .nz rules. 

The ecosystem is a complex network of varying criminal, contractual, civil and moral standards. A network that is only as strong as its weakest link. That is why it is vital for every participant to lift one another up and for each to do their lawful part to protect and build better services and spaces. 

We’ve been well served to mitigate threats in the .nz domain name space by:

Did you know only a fraction of the 720,000 domain names registered have ever been subjected to compliance action measuring below 1 percent of the total register? Most .nz actors are playing by the rules. 

We’re grateful to our second level policy moderators, the Department of Internal Affairs Digital Safety team and the Cyber Emergency Response Team for their efforts. Additionally, a special thank you to CERTNZ for being the single largest referrer to us of registration and infrastructure abuse reports this past year. There will be more about our domain name abuse statistics to come in the annual report. 

This month we are looking forward to forging closer working relationships with the Registrar of Births Deaths Deaths and Marriages and the Financial Markets Authority. These respective agencies will be helping us to ensure .nz data does not contain any death records and .nz domain names associated with finance and cryptocurrency scams are thoroughly investigated. This takes our MOU holder community to seven. Welcome aboard. 

We have a broad range of harms to tackle and a wealth of resources available across the online safety ecosystem. More resources are under development with the arrival of our part-time e-learning specialist role which is timely. 

Ngā mihi

Brent Carey
Domain Name Commissioner 

Updates from the team

Photo: Heidi Quinn from Volunteer Wellington with some of the Commission and InternetNZ team.

Celebrating National Volunteer Week 

Last month we enjoyed participating in volunteering week. We had a wonderful guest speaker Heidi Quinn from Volunteer Wellington. Read our latest blog to hear what we got up to.

Arrival of subject matter experts

We have recently had some new people join our team.

Keri Morris is a seasoned dispute resolution practitioner who is joining us one day a week to support the roll out of the online dispute resolution pilot. We are excited to have Keri share her ODR and extensive mediation experience with us.

Fergielyn Catayoc, a newly admitted Solicitor with an intellectual property background, will also be assisting with dispute resolution. Fergielyn will provide assistance while other staff members are working on InternetNZ Group projects. 

Lindsey Marshall is an expert eLearning specialist who is going to assist in rolling out our eLearning program that will enhance our work and spread the word about what we do. Knowledge is power!

James Beswick is joining in the essential Customer Experience Specialist role providing maternity cover. James brings a passion for learning and problem resolution. 

See our organisation chart

Updates for consumers

Graph showing registrar prices in NZ (info in text below)

Watching over retail pricing

We have recently completed the June 2021 whole of market capture of the wholesale and retail pricing for .nz domain names which occurs every six months. This is in addition to the monthly retail pricing capture of the top 8 registrars that is performed and added to our website .nz market data statistics

The results of our whole of market review indicate that the median price for has risen from $36 to $39 in the period December 2020 to June 2021. In the .nz space a small median price rise occurred taking the price from $35 to $35.90.

Clarins wins in .nz domain name dispute – new expert decision

In May 2021 the decision of Clarins v Sun was released which involved a dispute over the domain name 

The facts included that Clarins Group had had a registered trademark in beauty products in New Zealand since 1974 and had commenced using the trademark in 1977. The history of the domain name included that it was used by the original NZ distributor of Clarins who had gone into liquidation (in 2017). The current registrant (the respondent) had no relationship with Clarins and the domain name was advertised for sale for around $2,000.

Factors that the expert took into account in determining that Clarins should have the domain name transferred to it included that:

  • Clarins had rights in the name, and 

  • that the most likely motivation for the registration of the domain name was to sell, rent or otherwise transfer the domain name to the complainant or to a competitor of the complainant. 

Decisions can currently be found here. Our new website will be updated soon to provide access or links to domain name dispute decisions. 

You can also access decisions via under #nzdnc

Understanding some of the domain name jargon 

Like any industry, the domain name space has its share of jargon. Understanding this jargon will help make domain name management easier! We demystify some of the terms in our blog.

Understanding .nz domain name jargon

Updates for industry

Quarter One 2021 report by numbers 

The end of the first quarter of the reporting year went by in a flash.

Highlights of the quarter:

  • Our chatbot was triggered by visitors to our website 1080 times and on 443 occasions answered visitors' questions without the need for live chat or follow up by Contact Centre staff. 

  • We received and resolved 628 email enquiries and 111 phone enquiries this last quarter. 

  • The cancellation of domain names referred to us in the period 1 April to 30 June stood at 37. There were 8 urgent domain name suspensions completed in this quarter as they related to registration abuse and  significant harm involving financial and education institutes. 

The Commission suspends domains where registrants do not validate their registrant information when contacted. The upcoming annual report will include our full set of numbers and commentary about trends and issues.

Outreach and engagement 


Domain Name Commission to gain access to death data under new approved information sharing agreement 

We are taking further steps to ensure the data accuracy of .nz registration data and have signed an information sharing agreement with the Registrar of Births Deaths and Marriages to share New Zealand death data. 

The agreement, which involved consultation with the Office of the Privacy Commissioner, will help us to ensure accurate information is on the .nz register. Where there are matches between register records and death information, we will make enquiries to change registrant details to the correct registrant or look into cancelling the domain name registration record to enable the domain name to be re-registered. 

Jeff Montgomery, Registrar-General of Births Deaths and Marriages said on signing the agreement:

“Accurate and secure data is essential for any registry – especially those that form a critical part of our vital infrastructure. This is true for Births, Deaths and Marriages which holds the single source of truth for the most significant life events for more 10 million New Zealanders, alive and dead. It is equally as important for .nz which is crucial infrastructure for many of our businesses and for many services that New Zealanders rely on. This data sharing agreement – between two of the largest registries in Aotearoa – is a significant achievement.“

Dispute investigator group meeting 

We attended the Dispute Investigator Group meeting in June. We were interested to learn more about MBIE’s Government Centre of Dispute Resolution assessment tool and guidance materials. Dispute resolution schemes can access the tools to self assess their processes.
Coffee with the Commissioner

Earlier this month we began a new series of 'Coffee with the Commissioner' - first stop @freeparkingnz in New Plymouth. Our Commissioner met their customer facing staff and engineering teams. 
Photo: Brent Carey, Commissioner, at Freeparking offices. 


Our team attended various sessions at the 71st meeting of the Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), which was held online with a focus on policy issues. Topics discussed included WHOIS, data protection, DNS abuse mitigation and regulatory developments.
Upcoming trans Tasman quarterly compliance meeting with AUDA  

Staff have kicked off a new initiative of meeting with AUDA’s Compliance and Analytics Team. The .nz and .au namespaces share many of the same registrars and competition issues. The meeting will be a chance to update on recent compliance topics and best practice.

APTLD80 and Pacific Internet Governance Forum 

Online registrations are open for APTLD80 which is colocating with the Pacific Internet Governance Forum. The office is heavily involved in weekly meetings with host country Fiji and offering coordination, support and capacity building to deliver these two online events across the Asia Pacific region. 

Paper in typewrite that has the word News

Interesting news

Upcoming events


And, as always, please give us feedback via email or on Twitter (@nzdnc). What topics do you want to hear more about, what bullet above is your favourite? What do you want more or less of?

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