Over 80,000 Domains Owned by UK Residents Suspended Following the Completion of Brexit Transition

At the beginning of 2021, numerous British website proprietors encountered a shocking surprise: Eurid, the controller of .eu domain names, had suspended .eu domain names applied by UK 81k citizens due to the new regulations stemming from Brexit reports Leprince-Ringuet From Zdnet .

Owners of suspended .eu domain names have three months to establish their entitlement to keep the domain. To do so, they need to either update their contact information and transfer the domain to an EU subsidiary located outside the UK or demonstrate their EU citizenship or residency. As a result, the domain name can no longer be used to support a website or service, such as email.

Eurid has stated that domain names will be re-activated if contact data is updated in the next couple of months. Those who do not prove their eligibility before the 31st of March 2021 will have their domain name removed and made available for general registration from January 2022 if no action is taken by then. They also reported that 81,000 domains, from 50,000 users, have already been suspended.

After varied signals from the European Commission relating to the regulations for .eu domain registration, Eurid has suspended UK domains. The EU’s rules currently state that .eu sites can only be given to EU citizens, regardless of where they live, as well as to non-EU citizens and businesses established in a member state.

Brexit 81k EU Leprince-Ringuet Zdnet

Consequently, when Brexit was realized, websites with .eu domain names owned by British individuals suddenly became websites hosted by a non-EU nation and outside the European Union.

In 2018, the European Commission issued a statement implying that all .eu websites based in the UK and belonging to UK inhabitants could be cancelled once the country left the EU. Around 300,000 .eu domains were registered in the UK according to Eurid’s records; the announcement was not welcomed favorably.

Eurid stated that they had not had much involvement in the European Commission’s initial decision, and went on to mention that a link to the announcement was sent to them when it was published. The registry manager cautioned that the removal of UK-based websites might take place as of 30 March 2019 in the event that no withdrawal agreement is reached between the UK and EU, and if an agreement is achieved, the withdrawal could take place as of 1 January 2021.

The Commission’s declaration was met with intense disapproval, with owners of .eu websites arguing that taking away their existing domains infringed on their right to property, according to Twobirds.com.

In November of 2020, Eurid declared that an accord had been struck with the Commission regarding new regulations. Starting January 1st, 2021, the European registry manager put a halt to the registration of domain names by UK registrants; however, those who already had domains were provided with additional time to comply with the new requirements.

UK-based .eu domain owners were given a three-month “suspension” period instead of being immediately cancelled. This respite gave them the chance to revise their contact information and potentially keep their .eu name.

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The latest memo from Eurid is the third in a series of Brexit notices to UK registrants for the month of December, and these updates have caused a great deal of uncertainty. This has resulted in a significant drop in .eu domains registered in the UK from over 300,000 in 2017 to approximately 81,500 at the beginning of 2021. Between 2018 and 2019, in particular, the number of .eu websites in the UK decreased by 46.7%.

Many UK proprietors, it appears, have completely forsaken their .eu name, and instead chosen to establish a fresh domain to which they transferred their traffic – necessitating extra effort in adjusting marketing, search engine optimization, and customer service.

Eurid has declared that, as of April 1st 2021, it will inform UK registrants who have not met the standards, and come 2022, these domains will have been cancelled and be capable of being registered by anyone.

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