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.com and .de top the charts in Q3 figures

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There were almost 220 million internet domain names at the end of September, an increase of 4.9 million on June, according to the latest numbers from Verisign.

The 2.3 per cent increase was driven largely by growth in country-code top-level domains (ccTLDs such as .uk and .de), according to the company's latest quarterly Domain Name Industry Brief.

VeriSign's numbers show that the ccTLD market grew faster in the third quarter, up 2.7 per cent quarter-over-quarter and 9.8 per cent over the year, to stand at 86.9 million domains.

The top ten TLDs, in order of size, are .com, .de, .net, .uk, .org, .info, .tk, .nl, .ru and .eu.

The .tk (Tokelau) space is growing fast, jumping into the top ten in the quarter largely due to the fact that the domains are available for free, which makes them popular with spammers.

Tokelau displaced China's .cn, which has been in decline for some time due to Draconian restrictions on who can register domain names, rules that were put in place two years ago.

The Russian ccTLD pushed the European Union's .eu into tenth place as a result of a resurgence of interest in domain names due to the recent introduction of a Cyrillic-script version of .ru.

Verisign's .com and .net zones, when combined, now account for more than 112 million domains, a 1.8 per cent increase on the third quarter, according to the company. ®

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