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Afilias Public Advisory Concerning Auctions of .INFO Domain Names

NEWTOWN, PA - 18 October, 2001 - Afilias, the .INFO registry, today issued a formal caution to the legal counsels of .INFO-authorized registrars and popular domain name auction sites regarding the attempted sale of domain names registered during the .INFO Sunrise Period.

Specifically, Afilias noted that Sunrise names are not currently eligible for ownership transfer, as they are locked for up to 180 days following the close of the Sunrise period, which ended August 31, 2001. Additionally, all Sunrise names are subject to challenge until December 26, 2001. Current Sunrise domain name registrants may lose ownership of the domain name as a result of a challenge proceeding, thereby rendering them unable to deliver the name being auctioned.

As part of the intellectual property protection incorporated into the launch of the new .INFO top-level domain, Afilias offered a "Sunrise Period" to enable trademark holders to register their marks in advance of the general public. Sunrise names can be recognized by the "created on" date in the WHOIS. Sunrise names have "created on" dates prior to September 1, 2001.

Sunrise names are subject to conditions that potential buyers should be aware of. First, all Sunrise names are subject to challenge until December 26, 2001, a process that may result in the loss of ownership by the current owner. Afilias expects to challenge a significant number of Sunrise names whose trademark information may be facially invalid. Second, Sunrise names cannot be transferred for up to 180 days past the close of the Sunrise registration period.

In its memorandum to legal counsel, Afilias advised counsel of the restrictions that the Sunrise Period has placed on domain names and strongly urged them to caution potential customers regarding the purchase of Sunrise domain names on auction.

Potential buyers of .INFO domain names through auction sites should be aware of these restrictions. Afilias urges those considering the purchase of .INFO domain names through auction sites to check the "created on" date of registration in the .INFO WHOIS database to verify that the name they wish to bid on was created on or after September 1, 2001.

Additional information regarding .INFO, its registration processes, and its dispute resolution policies can be obtained at http://www.info.info/get-info/dispute-resolution