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> News for 2001

31 Jan 2001

UK companies lacking in responsibility over Internet identity

~ NetNames’ research reveals less than 1% of companies have someone dedicated to managing domain names ~

London – January 31, 2001 – UK companies are failing to grasp the importance of protecting their brand on the Internet and making online brand management the responsibility of an individual within their organisation.

NetNames, the UK’s leading domain name registrar, spoke to 400 of the UK’s top 1000 companies. The results revealed that less than 1% of companies have anybody within their company whose remit was ensuring that the company’s domain names had been registered, protected and were being managed properly.

The current situation means that registered domain names often go un-renewed and not all generic top-level domains, or country-code domains in regions where the firm operates, are registered. Many frequent ‘typos’ or hyphenated versions of company and brand names also go un-registered, leaving companies and their brands vulnerable to cybersquatters and typosquatters.

“These results are astounding,” said Jonathan Robinson, CEO of NetBenefit, parent company of NetNames. “It may have been understandable two or three years ago, when people were still unsure as to whether domain names fell under the remit of the IT or marketing departments. Today, however, the online strategy is a vital part of every large corporation. It’s a damning indictment on our attitude towards the e-economy that less than one percent of companies have someone in place to take responsibility for their digital identity.”

“Not having anyone responsible within a company for domain names leaves a company extremely vulnerable. Not only is business potentially diverted away from the company, but the strength of the brand is compromised if web sites containing a company’s trade names are held by competitors or cybersquatters. Every single company should have someone within their marketing department whose role is to ensure this doesn’t happen.”

For further information on NetNames’ services, please visit the web site at www.netnames.co.uk or call + 44 (0)20 7549 5342.

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NOTES TO EDITORS

About NetNames

NetNames, part of the NetBenefit group (LSE:NBT), is one of the world’s leading domain name registrars whose principal activities are the provision of immediate, reliable, and responsive services for companies and individuals who need to register, protect and manage domain names anywhere in the world.

NetNames provides expertise in the policies and legal issues surrounding domain name registration in over 200 active top-level country domains.

Contact Details:

NetBenefit plc
Colette Douglass
Tel: +44 (0)20 7549 5342
Email: colette.douglass@netnames.com

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