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Verisign Files Patent Applications for Buying Future Rights to Domain Names


November 14, 2018

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As reported by Domain Name Wire, Verisign recently filed two patent applications regarding securing future rights to domain names should they later become available. Verisign, according to its website, is a global leader in domain names and internet security. Verisign enables internet navigation for many of the world’s most recognized domain names and provides protection for websites and enterprises around the world.


The first application (US 2018/0302366) for “Domain Name Registration Reservation Through the Use of Encoding Domain Names” was filed on April 17, 2017 and published on October 18, 2018. This first application notes that a related application, “Domain Name Registration Reservation Through the Use of Encoding Domain Names for Pools” was filed concurrently. However, this second application does not appear to have been published.


The published application describes a process through which domain names may be backordered for when they become available in the future due to, for example, expiration of the domain on a certain date or when the current owner relinquishes the domain registration. Anyone wishing to secure a domain name for future use would register an “encoding domain”.


The application contains the following example:

  • For example, an encoding domain name that reserves a right to register example.com upon its deletion on Mar. 28, 2017 may be written as, for example, “dn–example-20170328.com”

The application indicates that rights could be to a specific domain name or a group of domain names and can be transferred to someone else. Additionally, rights could be ranked – essentially a line-up for the domain name.


The patents, if granted, may impact the domain name industry. It does not appear that corresponding Canadian patent applications have been filed.


Author: Alexandra Murray

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