Blog | Reputational strength of .ie domains revealed
Our latest .IE Domain Profile Report reveals there were almost 330,000 .ie domain names in the database by the end of last year with 48,168 new .ie domains registered in 2022.
Now in its eighth year, the .IE Domain Profile Report is an annual exploration of the .ie database. The report also outlines key advantages that can be leveraged by Irish enterprise with a .ie domain.
Cybersecurity - a key focus
At .IE, we provide an additional layer of security to owners of a .ie domain name, free of charge.
This service provides a constant scanning of .ie sites and involves instant notification to an SME’s hosting provider, who can help them take the corrective action once a scam has been detected. The report revealed over 500 cyber attacks were taken down in 2022. Two in five were phishing scams and one in four were malware attacks.
Despite a significant increase in cyber attacks, websites featuring a security certificate were down six percentage points resulting in more websites being vulnerable to attack. This level of security is crucial to safeguard customer’s data.
The report indicated that threats to a .ie domain are lower than other top level domain names such as .com. Only individuals and businesses with a provable connection to Ireland can register a .ie domain. Applications from new customers are manually reviewed to ensure that they meet this requirement. This process keeps the .ie domain largely free from scams and other illegal activities. 91% of .ie domain names are registered on the island of Ireland, with the total number of internationally registered .ie domains under 30,000. Top international registrants are from Great Britain (10,983), United States (5,117) and Germany (2,535).
Speaking at the launch of the report David Curtin, Chief Executive of .IE said
At .IE it is a priority to proactively tackle abuse in the .ie namespace to protect both SMEs and their customers. The findings of our .IE Domain Profile Report highlight some security vulnerabilities of .ie profiles, but also demonstrates where we provide enhanced supports to help Ireland’s digital economy thrive.
“Our .IE Tipping Point Report 2022 also revealed that SMEs who invested in their online services since Covid, 30% (1 in 3) were busier than they were before the pandemic and 36% maintained the same level of business. SMEs are facing a new wave of economic challenges post Covid but with over 50% planning a significant digital investment in the next five years, we want to make sure they are investing in that digitalisation smartly and are aware of the necessary security features to implement.”
The trustworthiness of a .ie domain is also internationally recognised by The SpamHaus Project, an international non-profit organisation that tracks spam and related cyber threats. They collate a Badness Index for top level domains in real-time with .ie currently listed with a perfect rating of 0.0% in comparison with .com with a Badness Index of 2.5%.
The report identified the counties experiencing the largest growth in new .ie domain registrations, a positive ‘forward-indicator’ of increased regional economic activity, with Tyrone recording the largest growth for 2022 v pre-pandemic 2019 at 73.4%. Tipperary came in second overall, with 26.5% growth.
Mayo had the largest had the largest growth (+24.1%) for any county in Connaught v 2019, followed by Galway at 8.4% adding 2,303 new domains.
Wexford came out on top in Leinster with an 18.2% increase. Amongst the border counties, Monaghan had the largest percentage growth (+8.4%).
Post Covid growth
The report also indicates that the Covid surge of digital mobilisation has tapered off, identifying a drop in new .ie registrations year-on-year (-22.6% v 2021).
This is much less significant at 4% (2022 v 2019) when compared to more normal pre-pandemic levels and demonstrates that SMEs continue to use websites as a core part of their business with the benefits far outweighing a social media ‘shop front’.
Speaking at the launch, Pat Kane, Founder of reuzi.ie commented
When I founded my business in 2018 my objective was to inform and inspire people across Ireland, making sustainability more accessible, affordable and fun. In the process of selecting a domain name for my website it was crucial that I had access to something that represented my business as truly Irish. I chose a .ie domain name because we are proud of what that means to my customers and community in Ireland and across the rest of the world – that we are an authentic Irish business doing great work.
The .IE Domain Profile Report is a biannual analysis of the .ie domain database. The 2022 report covers the period 1 January – 31 December 2022.
For further information, visit our .IE Domain Profile Report page where you can download the full report and factsheet.
Naomi Temple is our Marketing Manager working within our corporate communications team.