NetNames shares report findings

UK-based domain registrar NetNames announced on Wednesday that top US retailers are leaving themselves at major risk of brand damage online because of poor domain registration practices.

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According to its recent "American E-commerce Brands" report, more than two-thirds of leading online retailers in the US currently have at least one domain suffix related to their brand name that is held by a cybersquatter.

It also reveals that less than half of all domains relating to major online retailers in the US have been registered by company officials, leaving them wide open to attack online.

This was demonstrated by the fact that more than 28 percent of domains relating to these online retailers were occupied by cybersquatters and more than six percent were available for purchase in the open market. The report also underlined a surprising general disregard for all domain suffixes apart from .com, says NetNames.

"Considering that these retailers rely on e-commerce as a significant part of their business, it is alarming to see that so many do not seem concerned about one of the most vital elements of online brand protection," says James Lambright, chief strategy officer for NetNames.

"Not registering relevant domain names is the online equivalent of leaving your storefront open overnight.

The American E-commerce Brands report reveals that other than .com a frightening majority of the top US online retailers are not protecting domain names relating to their brand and as such are putting their reputations on the line unnecessarily."

NetNames also recently reported that cybersquatters may have been the first to profit from the UK iPhone launch as many of them had already snapped up key domain names related to the gadget prior to the announcement of the iPhone's exclusive UK operator.

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