Nigeria’s Active Domain Names Slide in One Year from 180,763 in 2021 to 178,739 in 2022

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Emma Okonji

In one year, Nigeria experienced a slide in her active dot ng (.ng) domain names, which is Nigeria’s identity in cyberspace.

Although domain names come in three categories: Top Level Domain Name such as .com; Second Level Domain Name such as .com.ng; and Third Level Domain Name such as www.com.ng, the slide in Nigeria’s active domain names was more with the third level domain names, which dropped from 148,157 domains in March 2021 to 119,573 domains in March 2022, bringing the total number of active domain names to 178,739 in March 2022, which was a drop from 180,763 domain names that were recorded in March 2021.

However, domain names registration, restoration and renewal, increased within a space of one year, even though the total number of active domain names dropped from 180,763 domains in March 2021 to 178,739 domains in March 2022.

The Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA), the body in charge of managing Nigeria’s country code Top Level Domain (ccTLD), the .ng, released the figures recently on its official website. 

According to the figures, in 2021, new domain name registration was 6,161 and in 2022, the new domain name registration increased to 6,242. 

In 2021, renewal of exiting domain names was 4,559, and in 2022, renewal of existing domain names increased to 5,190. Also in 2021, restoration of domain names reached 88, while the figure for the same restoration in 2022, increased to 118.

In spite of the increase in domain name registration, renewal and restoration from 2021 to 2022, the active domain names, especially the third level domain names, decreased from 148,157 domains in March 2021, to 119,573 domains in March 2022, while the second level domain names increased from 32,606 domains in March 2021 to 59,166 domains in March 2022.

According to the figures released by NiRA, the total active domain names in the country, however decreased from 180,763 domains in March 2021, to 178,739 domains in March 2022.

Commenting, the President of NiRA, Mr. Mohammed Rudman, told THISDAY that the slide in the active number of third level domain names, was as a result of COVID-19 pandemic, which he said, could not allow most organisations who had hitherto purchased the third level domain names, to put them to effective use businesses went low, when the global economy, including the Nigerian economy was locked down in 2020 and 2021 as a result of the pandemic. 

“In 2020, we experienced an increase in the number of registration for country code Top Level Domain Name (ccTLD) but in 2021, the number of registration dropped because of the effect of COVID-19 pandemic. The issue is that all those that registered in 2020, could not use the domain name in that same 2020 because of the pandemic and as such they did not renew their registration in 2021 and new registration also dropped in 2021 for ccTLD,” Rudman said.

He however said NiRA would populate .ng domain name in the country, through its initiative to slashed the cost of dot ng domain names by 40 per cent.

Rudman told THISDAY that the decision to reduce the cost of .ng domain names was made by the NiRA board of directors after reviewing the growth trajectory of .ng domain names across the country over the last two years.

According to Rudman, “To address the issue, NiRA decided to conduct a downward review of domain name prices on the .ng domains and a marginal reduction on .com.ng domains and others by 40 per cent. We made it public after first announcing it at the registrars’ forum. The goal is to increase the number of domain names registered in the country by encouraging more people to register.”