Consumers warned over 100-year DNS sign-up

New Zealanders are being warned against taking up a $US1,000 offer to renew Internet domain names for 100 years.

U.S. registrar Network Solutions made the offer in e-mails to its customers yesterday. The company says for an upfront payment of US$9.99 for each year, it will renew the domain name for 100 years. The payment is non-refundable and non-transferable.

But Wellington IT consultant Alick Wilson says it's an "odd" deal. He doubts that the current domain name system will be in place for anything like 100 years, and says other registrars already charge less than $US9.99 without requiring payment for 100 years.

"I find this quite interesting, and given that you can actually register with other companies for less than $US9 a year, why would you bother?" he says.

Last year Wilson was appointed to an ICANN leadership body. ICANN, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, has oversight of the domain name system.

"This just seems odd," Wilson says. "My suggestion would be that there are a number of alternative registrars." Network Solutions says the US$9.99 rate represents a saving of over 70 percent compared to the company's normal annual rate of $US34.99. However, other registrars offer domain name registration for as little as $US4 a year.

Network Solutions is pitching its offer at organizations who are concerned at possibly forgetting to renew a domain name. Wilson says that might appeal to some larger corporations that tend not to change registrars because the cost savings don't offset the administrative overhead of switching. For those companies, the annual registration cost is "chickenfeed," he says.

Those organizations are Network Solutions customers because the company originally had a monopoly over dot-com registrations.

But paying 100 years' registration fees in advance doesn't guarantee ownership of the name for 100 years. Network Solutions says it will register the name as far in advance as possible, and renew it each year, but Wilson points out there is no guarantee the company will continue in business for 100 years.

The numerical IP structure underpinning DNS is slated for replacement by IPv6, he says, and the naming structure may well receive an update also.

"It could even last 50 years from now. But would I bet on it? Probably not."

According to the Web site, Network Solutions is the third biggest registrar worldwide with a 4.2 percent market share.

Join the newsletter!


Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Matthew Cooney

Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers


This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang


It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries


As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr


The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?