'.Biz' Domain-Name Registrar Hikes Fees

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Another week, another price increase in Internet addresses.

This time, it's ".biz" whose fees are going up.

In recent weeks, operators of ".com," ".net," ".org" and ".info" have announced increases beginning in mid-October in the wholesale prices for domain names — what the operators collect from the companies that sell names on their behalf.

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Such charges are generally incorporated in the prices companies, groups and individuals pay to register names, and they apply to new registrations, transfers and renewals.

Many of the announced hikes became possible when the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, the Internet's key oversight agency, agreed to new contract terms in December, permitting an annual hike of up to 10 percent a year upon six months' notice.

NeuStar Inc. (NSR), the operator of ".biz," said it would raise fees 7 percent to $6.42, starting Oct. 19.

In a letter to ICANN, NeuStar said the company was "taking this action to align .BIZ domain prices more closely with those of competing global TLDs," or domain names.

With about 1.7 million names registered, the ".biz" suffix is the world's 10th most popular domain name and was one of seven ICANN approved in 2000 in the first major expansion of Internet addresses since the system was created in the 1980s.