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Brexit’s Impact on EU Domains

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Having a strong online presence is crucial, it provides your business with a digital platform so that customers from all around the world can see your products, services or find out more information about your business. However, an unpredicted consequence of Brexit could see businesses with an .EU domain losing their domains on January 1st 2021.

.EU is the country code top-level domains for the European Union. Launching on 7th December in 2005, the domain has been available for any person, company or organisation based within the EU. It is believed there are to be over 300,000 .EU domains owned by British registrants.

From January 1st 2021, you’ll no longer be able to register or renew .eu domain names if:

  • You live outside the EU/EEA and are not an EU/EEA citizen
  • Your organisation, business or undertaking is established in the UK but not in the EU/EEA

You can only register or hold .eu domain names if you are:

  • an EU/EEA citizen, independently of where you live
  • not an EU/EEA citizen but are a resident in the EU/EEA
  • an organisation, business or undertaking that is established in the EU/EEA

What will happen if you don’t meed the criteria:
On 3 June 2020, EURid, the registry which is responsible for the day-to-day running of the .eu Top Level Domain, published guidance for UK registrants and the steps it will take around the end of the transition period. The notice states that:

  • UK registrants will receive an email notification from EURid on 1 October 2020 informing them that they will lose their eligibility to retain their .eu domain name as of 1 January 2021 unless they can demonstrate their compliance with the .eu regulatory framework by updating their registration data before 31 December 2020
  • EURid will then send a further email on 21 December 2020 notifying all UK registrants who did not demonstrate continued compliance with the eligibility criteria and their registrars of risk of forthcoming non-compliance with the .eu regulatory framework
  • The notice then states that as of 1 January 2021, any UK registrant who cannot meet the eligibility criteria will have their .eu domain names withdrawn. A withdrawn domain name no longer functions, as the domain name is removed from the zone file and can no longer support any active services (such as websites or email).
  • The EURid notice states that withdrawn domain names will not be available to any other entity for a further twelve months.

On January 1st 2022, all the withdrawn domain names will be revoked and made available for registration by other entities.

  • Discuss with your local domain name registrar whether to transfer your internet presence to another top-level domain. Examples include .com,, .net or .org. Your registrar will be able to offer advice on how to let your customers know that you’re moving or have moved to another domain, such as a holding page to redirect web traffic towards a new domain, or advice on how to update your search engine optimisation.
  • You may wish to seek advice from your local domain name registrar on whether the terms of your contractual agreement provide for any recourse in the event of withdrawal or revocation of a .eu registration.
  • Consider developing a migration plan for services and functions that your .eu domain, website or associated email address is linked to or supports, such as:
  • eu email addresses that access critical business processes, including online banking services, online payment providers, government services like HMRC online, or payment verification systems
  • .eu email addresses that access services that use an email and password for registration, including membership organisations and clubs, social media, and two-factor authentication services
  • .eu email addresses used to communicate with customers, clients, internal communications or to distribute mailing list
  • .eu websites or email accounts that hold data that you need to transfer before any loss of access
  • Virtual Private Network (VPN) or other services that use your .eu domain name

All information within this blog has been taken from the source below:

If you need any support or advice, then get in touch with us today and we will be happy to help.

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