Everything you need to know about Australia’s new au domains.
One of these emails is real and contains a “Totally Legit Purchase Order”. The other contains a nasty software hack that would bring our system down. Can you tell which email is which?
What are .au domains?
As of March 24th 2022, a new domain is available for Aussie organisations. We can now get .au domains, without the usual .com or .net we’re used to seeing.
This means that domains like yourbusiness.au are now available, not just the usual yourbusiness.com.au.
Australia is joining the growing ranks of countries with these short and neat addresses, like New Zealand’s .nz and Singapore’s .sg.
How to register your .au domain names?
If you have a domain that ends in .au (like yourbusiness.com.au or yourbusiness.net.au), then the cleaner .au version of your domain (yourbusiness.au) has automatically been reserved for you to register until the 20th of September 2022. As an existing domain holder, you have priority registering these new domains.
If you don’t claim your reserved domain by September 20th then it will become available for anyone to purchase.
Here’s why that’s a risk you don’t want to take.
why you need to claim your .au domain address
Back to our image at the top. Can you tell now which email is real and which is fake?
The emails are very close to being exactly the same! Only by looking at the email or web address can we see that one came from aitsys.com.au and the other from aitsys.au.
If we hadn’t registered the aitsys.au domain name by September 20, then any scammer could have registered the domain name and sent us an email from a near-identical address as our own! We’d have almost certainly been tricked into opening a fake PDF that would attack our system.
Here’s a warning the Australian Cyber Security Centre has released on this issue:
This new category of domain name allows users to register shorter, more memorable online names; however, it also creates another avenue for cybercriminals to conduct fraudulent cyber activities. Opportunistic cybercriminals could register your .au domain name in an attempt to impersonate your business.
For example, if you have currently registered yourbusiness.com.au, a cybercriminal could register yourbusiness.au or yourbusinesscom.au and use these domains to conduct fraudulent cyber activities.
You can read more on this issue from the Australian Cyber Security Council here.
what do you need to do?
We’re recommending our clients procure the .au domain for any .com.au or .net.au domains they currently own. They can be used, or configured so that visitors to this new domain are redirected to your existing web address.
This process requires minimal time from us at our regular rates, and if a company other than us is providing your web hosting, we’ll happily engage them on your behalf to get the new .au domain functional for you.
Configuring your email accounts to also accept the new domain name would be ideal, but isn’t essential at this stage.
If you want us to arrange your new .au domain name or look after your current internet domains, click the ‘request support’ button at the top of the page, or contact us on 1300 228 480, and we’ll take care of the rest.