IP NEWS

Introduction of Non-Latin Domain Names

09/12/2009

According to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the organization that coordinates website addresses, including domain names, it will soon be possible to register internet addresses in non-Latin-based scripts such as Chinese, Arabic and Hindi. This substantially increases flexibility over the current system which is limited to the English alphabet, numbers 0 to 9 and hyphens.

Once new Internet extensions composed of non-Roman characters are evaluated and approved, the extensions should become available in 2010 for registration by individuals and businesses. More information is available at: http://www.icann.org/en/topics/idn/fast-track/.

Businesses, especially those that operate globally or in countries where non-Latin-based scripts are in use, should prepare to apply for registration of domain names composed of their key trademarks rendered in such scripts. After it becomes possible to register domain names in the new scripts, clients should conduct periodic searches to determine whether versions of their domain names and trademarks have been registered without authority.

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