Service & Support
nic.at - Registration Guidelines
(V 4.0, 02/29/2012)
nic.at registers internet domains below the top level domain (TLD) .at as well as the sub level domains (SLD) .co.at and .or.at, according to the internationally accepted standards for the operation of a country-TLD registry.
- Domain = A domain (e.g. example.at) is a combination of the domain name, the dot and a top level domain, here the top level domain .at or a sub level domain, here .co.at or .or.at.
- Domain name = A domain name is a sequence of characters, numbers („0-9") and hyphens („-“). A character in the sense of this definition is both a letter "a-z" as well as a letter mentioned in the list www.nic.at/idn/charset.
- IDN = Internationalised Domain Name = A domain (e.g. bücher.at) which consists of at least one letter beyond “a-z” according to the list at www.nic.at/idn/charset (cf. point 9).
- ACE-String = ASCII Compatible Encoding-String (e.g. xn--bcher-kva.at): A technically generated character string which only consists of characters from “a-z”, numbers from “0-9” and hyphens. The first four characters consist of the combination “xn--“. The ACE-string must be technically “translatable“ into an IDN (cf. RFC 3492).
- nic.at-handle = A nic.at-handle is a combination of letters and numbers which refers to a person and address within the nic.at database.
- DNSSEC = Domain Name System Security Extensions (DNSSEC) is an extension of the Domain Name System to verify the authenticity of DNS-answers using cryptographic signatures.
If the following registration guidelines or the General Terms and Conditions of nic.at refer to a “domain“, IDNs are also included, except from explicitly quoted other regulations.
3. Domain Name and Nameserver
The minimum length of a domain name under the Top Level Domain .at is three (3) characters, under the Sub Level Domains .co.at or .or.at one (1) character, whereas the IDN is relevant for the minimum number of characters. The maximum length is sixty-three (63) characters, whereas the ACE-string is relevant for the maximum number of characters of an IDN. A domain name may not commence or end with a hyphen and may not contain two hyphens at the third and fourth position, except for the ACE-string of an IDN. No distinction is made between capital and small letters, as capital letters are converted into small letters via so-called Nameprep. No other top level domains (e.g. “.com”, “.org”, “.info”) are allocated below “.at” at the time of the application.
On registration of a domain, at least two but not more than eigth nameservers have to be specified. Additionally 1-6 DS-Records can be named, if the respective domain is DNSSEC signed and the DS-Record(s) should be activated. The data supplied in the application must exactly correspond with the technical configuration. The domain holder must ensure that all specified nameservers are constantly available. An IDN must not be included in the description of the nameservers, but solely the ACE-string.
4. Registration of a Domain
The application for a domain is either performed via the services of a registrar (cf. point 6 of these registration guidelines) or by using the electronic application form provided by nic.at at
To register an IDN the application mask on the websiteeither has to contain the ACE-String or the IDN. To register an IDN through a registrar via mail-template the application must exclusively contain the ACE-string, whereas nic.at performs the technical decoding and thus creates the IDN. The subject of the contract is in any case the domain, not the ACE-string.
The applications for the delegation of a domain are processed electronically; only one domain can be registered per application. If no electronic media are available to the applicant, applications via fax or letter are also accepted. Applications sent via electronic form are processed in the order of their receipt. Applications made via fax or letter will be deemed to have been received at 00.00 hour of the workday following the day of their receipt; in case of doubt, the date and time of actual receipt is determinative.
An application is not considered filed until it is received without any errors regarding form and content. The precondition for the processing of an application is the complete and correct transmission of the data according to these regulations, as well as the accordance of the requested domain with these guidelines. After receipt of the application the operativeness of the nameservers as well as of any named DS-Records may be checked. The registration can be performed by the domain holder himself or by an agent authorized by him. The registration contract is placed between the future domain holder and nic.at at the time of the delegation; besides these regulations, he is bound to the general terms and conditions of nic.at (to be found at).
5. Domain Holder, Domain Contacts
The domain holder is the sole contractual partner of nic.at and thus the bearer of all rights and responsibilities concerning this domain. For an individual person the complete first and last name has to be specified, for other domain holders the complete name according to the statutory provisions (e.g. legal form in accordance with the commercial register) has to be specified. In addition, the address (the specification of a P.O. Box address is not sufficient) as well as the e-mail address of the domain holder (IDN is not possible for an e-mail address) and his status as individual person or organization has to be specified. The display of the e-mail address and the fax and phone number in the Whois-database can be refrained on the domain holder’s demand. The e-mail address of the domain holder must correspond to the regulations of the RFC 822.
Regarding the contact persons of a domain, i.e. the administrative contact (admin-c) and the technical contact (tech-c), the name, address and the e-mail address have to be specified. The admin-c is a contact person of the domain holder, who is not allowed to take legally relevant steps. The technical contact (tech-c) is the domain’s technical attendant.
Furthermore, an invoice recipient has to be specified, who can be the domain holder or a third party. Name, address and e-mail have to be specified. nic.at reserves the right to appoint the domain holder as the invoice recipient, if the data of the invoice recipient is obviously incorrect or the invoice recipient refuses payment of the domain.
The data of the domain holder and all contacts must contain ASCII-compliant character sets, no IDN-specific characters may be used.
nic.at offers the domain holder the possibility to delegate the application for the registration and administration of a domain to a registrar.
The invoice recipient of these domains must always be the registrar, who has to inform nic.at about it. The current list of all registrars is available at www.nic.at/registrars (also see 3.9 of the nic.at general terms and conditions).
With regard to registrations nic.at acts in good faith, relying on the legality of the claim. The applicant affirms that he complies with the relevant legal regulations and, in particular, not to infringe other parties’ rights to signs and rights under the law of competition (right to a name, trade mark right, unfair competition, etc.).
The applicant expressly agrees to the publication of the domain holder’s name and address, as well as names and addresses of other contacts named by him, on the internet, especially in the nic.at Whois-database or in databases of common places of documentation.
The applicant is aware that IDN is a technology, which might possibly cause technical problems for certain applications.
The applicant is aware that in the case of using DNSSEC he is responsible for the signing of the respective domain and that the relevant DS-Record(s) is/are transmitted to nic.at. nic.at´s sole responsibility is to incorporate the transmitted DS-Record(s) into the .at-zone. nic.at is also responsible for the correct signature of the .at-zone itself.
What is a domain holder?
The domain holder is the bearer of all rights and liabilities regarding a domain. He can dispose of, use, rent or transfer the domain to another person etc. No domain data must be modified without the domain holder's approval. However, he also has the responisbility to pay for open domain fees (himself or via an ISP), and he is liable for legal infringements regarding the domain. The domain holder is the only one who can effectively cancel the domain or transfer it to a third party.
What is a valid .at-domain name?
Valid characters in a domain name may be letters (“a-z”), numbers (“0-9), hyphens (“-“) and the. Two hyphens in a row as the third and fourth characters of adomain name are not allowed. The name must not begin or end with a hyphen. Length: domain names below .co.at and .or.at: at least one character (e.g. t3.co.at and s.or.at), domain names below .at: at least three characters. Maximum length: 63 characters.
What is "first come, first served" and how can it be verified?
"First come, first served" means that domain registrations are processed in the order of their receipt and that the first correct application leads to a delegation. Each electronic application gets a unique ticket number upon receipt, which makes the order clearly visible at any time.