Pandemic relief bill to nudge governments to .Gov

DOTGOV Online Trust in Government Act will help local governments transition to .Gov.

The pandemic relief bill that outgoing U.S. President Donald Trump recently signed could lead to more domain names ending in .gov.

Government Technology reports that the bill included the DOTGOV Online Trust in Government Act. The act is designed to get more governments in the U.S. to use .gov domain names.

While adoption of .gov is high at both state and federal agencies, local governments often choose .com or other extensions.

.Gov domain names are trickier for fraudsters to get (though not impossible), meaning that there’s a bit more faith that a .gov website is legitimate.

The act will move responsibility for .gov from the General Services Administration to the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA). It also mandates CISA to do an outreach program. CISA might be able to waive the $400 registration fees for the domains, too, which is an impediment to getting local governments to choose the domain over a $10 .com web address.

It will be interesting to see if this push also impacts .us, which some states use. For example, all agencies in Texas other than the Department of Motor Vehicles use addresses ending in state.tx.us.

 

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