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Top level domain .eu

The top level domain (TLD) .eu has been created at the initiative of the Commission. Following a decision of the Secretariat-Generalpdf(126 kB), the European Institutions have decided to use a common second level domain within the TLD .eu . At the same time however, the EU institutions have also decided to protect some names from abuse by third parties.



Top level domain .eu

The top level domain (TLD) .eu has been created at the initiative of the Commission. The domain has been opened for registration in April 2006 and is managed by the registry EURid under contract to the European Commission according to the terms set by the EU regulations (EC) N°s 733/2002pdf, 874/2004pdf, 1654/2005pdf, 1255/2007pdf and 560/2009pdf.

Following a decision of the Secretariat-Generalpdf(126 kB), the webpages of the European Institutions are using a common second level domain within the TLD .eu . Nevertheless, the EU institutions have reserved a number of names at the start up of the .eu domain in order to protect them from abuse by third parties.


Reserved names

Following the regulation (EC) N° 874/2004pdf the EU institutions have received the right to reserve during the pre-sunrise period preceding the opening of the .eu domain, names in the .eu domain for possible future use.  Names reserved by an institution can only be released for use by that same institution. The following remarks apply:

  • Reservation is not the same as Registration. When a name is reserved, it means that it can only be registered by the organisation that holds the reservation. A reserved name is not an operational internet address. It only becomes so when it is actually registered.
  • Reservation is an extraordinary privilige that was attributed to some organisations (see regulation (EC) N° 874/2004pdf) and is free of charge. The reservation was a unique act performed during the pre-sunrise period, resulting in a definitive list of protected names that cannot be extended by a similar procedure. Whenever additional names need to be protected, this can only be done by means a a regular registration procedure. 
  • None of the reserved domains can be used as such for an actual site URL. Names of actual sites will have to follow the rules agreed by the Ceiii and approved by the Secretaries General of the Institutions. They will all be part of the common second level domain

Registration of names

If a name must be protected and it was not reserved during the pre-sunrise period, it is necessary to register it in the .eu domain. Registration is also necessary to make reserved addresses operational. In every case the thus registered second level name cannot be used for promotion and it must be redirected to the official name in the domain.

Furthermore, in some cases, the European Commission is managing a site that is not an official EU site. Examples of these are sites run in collaboration with external private or public organisations. These sites cannot use a name within the domain; the name to be used should be decided in agreement with the external partners. Preference should be given to a name within the .eu domain. Again, that name must then be registered.

The registration of names in the .eu domain must be done by submitting a request for registration to one of the official registrars recognised by EURid. A yearly fee is due for such a registration.  DG Communication has established a framework contract with an official registrar that is open to all DGs and institutions for registering second level names in the .eu domain. Interested parties should follow the .eu registration procedure to that extent.

It should be noted, that no external registration is required for higher level domain names that belong to the domain. The second level domain is managed by the Informatics Directorate General of the Commission, which can create any higher level name within it without external intervention. The creation of these higher level domain names must follow the rules described in the section on Web Adresses.