Second-level domain

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In the Domain Name System (DNS) hierarchy, a second-level domain (SLD or 2LD) is a domain that is directly below a top-level domain (TLD). For example, in, example is the second-level domain of the .com TLD.

Second-level domains commonly refer to the organization that registered the domain name with a domain name registrar. Some domain name registries introduce a second-level hierarchy to a TLD that indicates the type of entity intended to register an SLD under it. For example, in the .uk namespace a college or other academic institution would register under the ccSLD, while companies would register under Strictly speaking, domains like and are second level domain themselves, since they are right below a TLD. A list of the official TLDs can be found at and An ordinal-free term to denote domains under which people can register their own domain name is public suffix domain (PSD).

Country-code second-level domains[edit]




In Austria there are two second-level domains available for the public:

  • intended for commercial enterprises
  • intended for organizations.[1]

The second-level domain

  • is restricted to Austrian citizens only, while
  • and are reserved for educational institutions and governmental bodies respectively.[2][3]


  •, and is open for registration for all Bangladeshi citizens and companies.
  • and is open for all kinds of educational institutions in Bangladesh.
  • is restricted for personal use.
  • is open for companies or agencies. But presently not available for registration.
  • is restricted to the government entities.
  • is restricted for military use.
  • is open for broadcasting and media agencies.



In France, there are various second-level domains available for certain sectors, including

  • for attorneys,
  • for airports and
  • for vets.[4]


New Zealand[edit]





As of 2005, liberalised policies for the .in domain allow unlimited second-level registrations under .in. Unlimited registrations under the previously structured existing zones are also allowed:

  • .in (available to anyone; used by companies, individuals, and organisations in India)
  • (intended for banks, registered companies, and trademarks)
  • (available to anyone; used by companies, individuals, and organisations in India)
  • (intended for shops, partnerships, liaison offices, sole proprietorships)
  • (intended for Internet service providers)
  • (intended for nonprofit organisations)
  • (intended for general/miscellaneous use)
  • (intended for individuals)

Zones reserved for use by qualified institutions in India:

  • (Older, for both educational and research institutes)
  • (Academic institutions)

Before the introduction of liberalised registration policies for the .in domain, only 7000 names had been registered between 1992 and 2004. As of March 2010, the number had increased to over 610,000 domain names with 60% of registrations coming from India and the rest from overseas. By October 2011, the number had surpassed 1 million domain names. As of March 2016, the number has more than doubled to over 2 million domain names.




South Africa[edit]

South Korea[edit]


Sri Lanka[edit]

Registrations are taken at the second level and also at the third level beneath various categorized second level names. A second-level registration automatically blocks the name from registration by anybody else under any of the third-level names.

  • Commercial entities
  • Noncommercial organizations
  • Educational sites
  • Non-governmental organizations
  • Registered societies
  • Web sites
  • Limited liability companies
  • Associations
  • Groups of companies
  • Hotels


Trinidad and Tobago[edit]



In Türkiye, domain registrations, including the registration of second-level domains is administrated by TRABİS.[5] There 17 active second-level domains under the .tr TLD.[6] The registration of domains is restricted to Turkish individuals and businesses, or foreign companies with a business activity in Turkey.[7] Second-level domains include for commercial ventures, for academic institutions and for personal use.[8]


Ukraine second-level domains include:

  • – available for government agencies.
  • – for commercial use.
  • – for commercial use.
  • – intended for non-profit organizations.
  • – intended for Internet providers.
  • – for academic institutions.

There are also numerous geographic names.

United Kingdom[edit]

United States[edit]

A two-letter second-level domain is formally reserved for each U.S. state, federal territory, and the District of Columbia.


Historic second-level domains[edit]

There are several second-level domains which are no longer available.


Second-level domains under .au which are no longer available include: originally intended for conferences; for the Australian Academic and Research networks; for general information, and for the X.400 mail systems.[9]


Prior to 12 Oct 2010 there were second level domain based on province: — Alberta, — British Columbia, — Manitoba, — New Brunswick, — Newfoundland, — Newfoundland and Labrador, — Nova Scotia, — Northwest Territories, — Nunavut, — Ontario, — Prince Edward Island, — Quebec, — Saskatchewan, — Yukon [citation needed]

Since 2010, some have been replaced (for example, while others have remained under the provincial two letter SLD (e.g., Calgary Board of Education and others were moved to more traditional subdomains ([10]


Historic second-level domains for France included: (for brands), (for commercial use) and [11][12]

The Netherlands[edit]

Historic second-level domains for the Netherlands included: (for commercial use)[13][14]


In 2006 the .yu ccTLD was replaced by .rs (for Serbia) and .me (for Montenegro). Second-level domains under .yu included: .ac.yu – for academic institutions, .co.yu for commercial enterprises; .org.yu for organizations and .cg.yu for residents of Montenegro. Only legal entities were allowed to register names under .yu and its second-level domains.[15]


Historic second-level domains for Tuvalu included:

Legal issues[edit]

As a result of ICANN's generic top-level domain (gTLD) expansion,[16] the risk of domain squatting has increased significantly. For example, based on current regulations, the registration of the gTLDs .olympics or .redcross is not allowed; however, the registration of sites such as olympics.example or redcross.example is not controlled.[17] Experts say [who?] that further restrictions are needed for second-level domains under the new gTLD .health, as well. For example, second-level domains under or can be easily misused by companies and therefore are a potential threat to Internet users.[18]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Useful information about domains". Retrieved 29 October 2014.
  2. ^ "Domain registration". Retrieved 29 October 2014.
  3. ^ "Principles and Grants". Retrieved 29 October 2014.
  4. ^ "Sector-based .fr domains". Retrieved 31 October 2014.
  5. ^ "Overview". Retrieved 29 October 2014.
  6. ^ "Who could register which domain name?". Retrieved 17 May 2024.
  7. ^ "Can an individual or a company in abroad register a ".tr" domain name?". Retrieved 17 May 2024.
  8. ^ "Who could register which domain name?". Retrieved 17 May 2024.
  9. ^ "the australian second level domain name system". Retrieved 31 October 2014.
  10. ^ "General Registration Rules, Version 3.21, February 5, 2015" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2017-12-01. Retrieved 18 November 2017.
  11. ^ "Useful information about .fr domains". Retrieved 31 October 2014.
  12. ^ "ICANN-Registrar: French Domains with Accents". Retrieved 31 October 2014.
  13. ^ "Commercial, national & international character with a domain name". Retrieved 25 January 2016.
  14. ^ ".Co.NL WhoIS". Retrieved 25 January 2016.
  15. ^ ".RS - Republic of Serbia .ME - Republic of Montenegro (Former parts of Yugoslavia) Formerly .YU and .CS Country Codes". Retrieved 31 October 2014.
  16. ^ "Delegated strings". Retrieved 29 October 2014.
  17. ^ Easton, Catherine R. (2012). "ICANN's core principles and the expansion of generic top-level domain names". International Journal of Law and Information Technology. 20 (4): 273–290. doi:10.1093/ijlit/eas013.
  18. ^ Mackey, TK; Liang, BA; Kohler, JC; Attaran, A (5 March 2014). "Health Domains for Sale: The Need for Global Health Internet Governance". J Med Internet Res. 16 (3): e62. doi:10.2196/jmir.3276. PMC 3961808. PMID 24598602.