Network Working Group Federal Networking Council
Request For Comments: 1811 June 1995
This memo provides information for the Internet community. This
memo does not specify an Internet standard of any kind.
Distribution of this memo is unlimited.
This document describes the registration policies for the top-
level domain ".GOV". Thus far, Federal Agencies and their
subsidiaries have registered without any guidance. This has
resulted in multiple registrations for Federal Agencies and naming
schemes that do not facilitate responsiveness to the public. This
document fixes this by restricting registrations to coincide with
the approved structure of the US government. The document cited,
FIPS 95-1, provides a standard recognized structure into which
domain registrations for top-level domains. The IANA requires
that an organization/country apply for and get a 2 letter code
from ISO/ITU (e.g., US for United States) for additional top-level
registration. As a side effect, this reduces the number of .GOV
level registrations and reduces the workload on the Internic.
U.S. GOVERNMENT INTERNET DOMAIN NAMES POLICY
The .GOV domain is delegated from the root authority to the US
Federal Networking Council. The .GOV domain is for registration
of US governmental entities on the federal level only.
Registrations for state and local governmental agencies shall be
made under the .US domain in accordance with the policies for that
1) The document "Codes for the Identification of Federal and
Federally Assisted Organizations", FIPS 95-1 (or its successor)
lists the official names of US Government agencies.
A) Top-level entities (e.g., those with codes ending in 00
such as "1200 Department of Agriculture"), and independent
agencies and organizations (e.g., "National Science Foundation and
other non-indented listings unless prohibited below) as listed in
this document are eligible for registration directly under .GOV.
B) Autonomous law enforcement components of top-level
entities (e.g., "Federal Bureau of Investigation", "Secret
Service", "Coast Guard") are also eligible for registration.
C) Cross-agency collaborative organizations (e.g., "Federal
Networking Council", "Information Infrastructure Task Force") are
eligible for registration under .GOV upon presentation of the
chartering document and are the only non-FIPS-listed organizations
eligible for registration under .GOV.
D) Subsidiary, non-autonomous components of top-level or
other entities are not eligible for separate registration.
International organizations listed in this document are NOT
eligible for registration under .GOV.
E) Organizations listed as "Federally Aided Organizations"
are not eligible for registration under .GOV and should register
under .ORG or other appropriate top-level domain.
F) Organizations subsidiary to "Department of Defense" must
register under the ".MIL" domain via the Defense Data Network
Network Information Center - contact [email protected]
The only standard exceptions to these rules are changes to
governmental structure due to statutory, regulatory or executive
directives not yet reflected in the above document. The
requesting agency should provide documentation in one of the above
forms to request an exception. Other requests for exception
should be referred to the Federal Networking Council.
2) A domain name should be derived from the official name for
the organization (e.g., "USDA.Gov" or "Agriculture.GOV".) The
registration shall be listed in the registration database under
the official name (per FIPS 95-1) for the organization or under
the name in the chartering document.
3) Only ONE registration and delegation shall be made per
agency. The .GOV registration authority shall provide
registrations on a first-come first-served basis. It is an
individual agency matter as to which portion of the agency is
responsible for managing the domain space under a delegated agency
4) Those agencies and entities that have multiple registrations
under .GOV may retain them for a maximum of 3 years from the
publication date of this document. Within 6 months after the
publication of this document, one primary domain must be selected
for the agency. The other (secondary) domains must cease further
sub-delegations and registrations at this time. As of 1 year
after the publication of this document, the secondary domains will
become undelegated and will revert to the control of the .GOV
owner. As of 2 years after the publication of this document, all
registrations in the secondary domains must be mirrored in the
primary domain and those names should be used where possible. At
the 3 year point, all secondary domain registrations will be
5) Those agencies and entities already registered in .GOV but
not listed in FIPS 95-1 (e.g., DOE labs, state entities) may
retain their registration within the constraint of the single
registration rule (see para 4). No further non-FIPS-listed
registrations will be made. State and local entities are strongly
encouraged to re-register under .US, but this is not mandatory.
 Federal Information Processing Standards Publication 95-1
(FIPS PUB 95-1, "Codes for the Identification of Feral and
Federally Assisted Organizations", U.S. Department of Commerce,
National Institute of Standards and Technology, January 4, 1993.
 Postel, J., "Domain Name System Structure and Delegation",
RFC 1591, USC/Information Sciences Institute, March 1994.
Author's Address Federal Networking Council
4001 N. Fairfax Drive Arlington, VA 22203
Phone: (703) 522-6410 EMail: [email protected]
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