VeriSign to raise domain fees

Controversial price increases mean VeriSign will charge 7 percent more for .com domains, 10 percent more for .net.

VeriSign on Thursday said it that it will increase the fees it charges for Internet domains ending in .com or .net.

Starting October 15, VeriSign will charge $6.42 for .com domains and $3.85 for .net domains, it said in a statement. The fees are charged to domain registrars such as GoDaddy and Tucows, which typically handle domain registration for customers.

The new prices represent a 7 percent price increase for .com domains, for which VeriSign currently charges $6, and a 10 percent rise for .net domains, which cost $3.50.

"This will be the first registry fee increase for .com and .net since the fee structure was put in place by ICANN in 1999," VeriSign said. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) regulates Internet domain name and address registration.

VeriSign's move isn't without controversy. The Mountain View, Calif., company controls the master database of both domains and as such has a monopoly on .com and .net registrations. The dispute over the cost of domain names even made it to Capitol Hill.

VeriSign argues the price increase is warranted because the volume of Internet traffic and domain name system queries have risen significantly since 1999. In addition, the company has had to make investments to defend the .com and .net infrastructures against increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks, VeriSign said.

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