Total registrations of .COM and .NET domain names increased to 113.8 million at the end of 2011 representing an eight per cent increase year-on-year Verisign announced. The company also announced the total number of .COM and .NET registrations increased by 7.9 million registrations in the final quarter of 2011.
While Verisign does not report separate registration figures for .COM and .NET, Domain Tools announced they believe there are now well over 100 million .COM registrations.
In their announcement, DomainTools said:
“Verisign publishes a daily ‘zone file’ of registered .com domain names with their associated nameservers. Yesterday the zone file listed 99,837548 .COM domain names and that number has been growing by an average of about 22,000 net new .com domain names per day so far in 2012. But there are two general categories of domain names that exist but are not listed in the zone files.”
DomainTools describes the two categories as thus:
“The first category is well known, at least to people who work in and around the domain industry: domains in the Redemption or Pending Delete periods. Each day tens of thousands of .com domain names hit their renewal date. There are currently 2.1 million .com domain names in either Redemption or Pending Delete status.
“The second category is much less well known, a category DomainTools refers to as ‘dark domains’. Domain names that exist, but are not pointed to nameservers, are not listed in the zone file and therefore not counted by most sites that track domain registration data. An example of such a domain is Spectrum.com; it exists but has no nameservers, and does not resolve to a website. Another example is theexpertcare.com; the Whois record indicates a fraud alert on the domain name and a ‘suspended’ status. This domain is also not in the zone file and yet is certainly not available for anyone to register.”
“In a year that saw strong growth in global internet adoption, increased demand on our DNS infrastructure, and a growing need for network security services, Verisign delivered security and stability. We were able to both invest in strengthening our infrastructure, and manage our business for growth. Also in 2011, we completed four years of board-directed restructuring, including divesting non-core businesses, and relocating our corporate headquarters. We returned divestiture proceeds to our shareholders. This restructuring has resulted in a more efficient, focused Verisign that we believe is better prepared for the opportunities ahead. We delivered for both the global community of Internet users that increasingly rely on us, and for our shareholders,” said Jim Bidzos, chairman and chief executive officer of Verisign.