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Through close collaborative efforts with Belgian Law Enforcement and a thorough internal verification procedure, EURid works towards building the most trustworthy online space available, taking a stand against abusive registrations and illegal activity online.

 

“Fighting abusive and illegal activity in the domain name space is a continuous battle that requires the constant evaluation and evolution of systems and procedures that are in place”, states Geo Van Langenhove, EURid’s Legal Manager. To ensure that a trustworthy online space is being respected within the .eu sphere, EURid regularly conducts an internal verification procedure and closely cooperates with various Belgian Law Enforcement agencies such as the Federal Ministry of Economy, Cybersquad, and the Federal Computer Crime Unit. “The authorities regularly report and notify us of domain names that are allegedly being used to facilitate illegal activity”, commented Mr. Van Langenhove. “On top of our existing internal verification procedure, the additional help from law enforcement has really allowed us to act quickly to combat illegal activity within the .eu space.”

 

From the Federal Ministry of Economy and the Cybersquad team alone, 390 domain names were reported for alleged illegal activity leading to 339 suspensions in 2015. In 2016, their inquiries have nearly quadrupled to a staggering 1,471 domain names resulting in 1,447 suspensions. On the difference between the number of reported and suspended domain names, Mr. Van Langenhove states that “when we are informed by Law Enforcement of alleged illegal activity on a domain name, we immediately give notice to the domain name holder and his or her registrar. Based upon this initial communication, many registrars take action and delete the domain name themselves.”


In total, EURid suspended 14,710 domain names in 2015. So far, in 2016, a total of 5,877 domain names have been suspended.


“It’s imperative that we continue to monitor and identify abusive registrations and alleged illegal activity happening within the .eu space and take action in a timely manner. Additionally, we also provide people with the proper tools to fight abuse themselves such as our extended WHOIS information and intellectual property protection”, states Giovanni Seppia, EURid’s External Relations Manager. EURid also provides a cost-effective and rapid Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) procedure that allows for people to challenge the registration of a domain name, be it for abusive purposes or for an infringement on intellectual property. As an additional measure in promoting trust and security, EURid has recently engaged in a collaborative effort with EUIPO to strengthen its security efforts and build awareness about European trademarks and domain names.