VeriSign Releases Domain Name Industry Brief Series Highlighting Market Trends in Domain Registrations

2003 Sets Records for New Registrations, Renewal Volumes, and Overall Growth



Feb 17, 2004, 00:00 ET from VeriSign, Inc.

    MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., Feb. 17 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- VeriSign, Inc.
 (Nasdaq:   VRSN), the leading provider of critical infrastructure services for
 the Internet and telecommunications networks, today released The Domain Name
 Industry Brief, an analysis of the industry that includes a report on domain
 name registrations, industry trends, and an industry primer on the Domain Name
 System, domain names and the key players in the industry.
     The report and primer ( http://www.verisign.com/domainbrief ) launch The
 Domain Name Industry Brief series, which will provide Internet users across
 the world with key statistical and analytical data on the domain name
 industry.  Each quarter, the Brief will provide updated data and will showcase
 a quarterly topic related to key Internet trends.
     Findings in the Brief include a strong rate of new registrations and a
 stabilizing base of domain names. Here are the highlights:
 
     -- Growing 16 percent in 2003, total domain name registrations reached a
        peak of over 60 million domain names in 2003. With 52 percent of all
        registrations, .com and .net represent the most popular domain names.
        More than 30.4 million domain names are currently registered in .com
        and .net with more than 1.7 million of those names added during the
        final quarter of 2003.
     -- Country Code Top Level Domains (ccTLDs) account for a growing portion
        of overall domain names and currently represent 40 percent of all
        domain name registrations. The majority of ccTLDs are registered in
        Europe with the top ten ccTLDs accounting for 71 percent of all ccTLD
        registrations. Several countries around the world have already launched
        Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs) often known as "multilingual"
        domains that are compatible with the countries' ccTLD registrations.
        Other countries are planning to launch those capabilities this year.
     -- According to VeriSign's Domain Name Primer, over 580 million people
        around the world use the Internet. The Internet represents the fastest
        growing technology, in terms of usage, of any previous decade in the
        world's history. Today, there are over 60 million registered domain
        names providing entry points onto the Internet.
 
     "The report shows how domain name registrations are increasing across the
 board," said Rusty Lewis, executive vice president of VeriSign's Naming and
 Directory Services. "In October of 2003, more than 1.5 million domain names
 were registered which represents the highest number of registrations for any
 single month in the history of the Internet. We think these increased rates in
 registrations speak to the growing global usage of the Internet supported by
 services like multilingual capabilities and online sales that provide new
 opportunities for Internet commerce and communications."
     VeriSign will host a Web conference on February 25, 2004 at 10:00 am EST
 to highlight the findings and field questions on the first two in the VeriSign
 Domain Name Industry Brief series.  To access the Web conference or to sign up
 for e-mail alerts when future briefs are published, visit
 http://www.verisign.com/domainbrief .
 
     About VeriSign
     VeriSign, Inc., delivers critical infrastructure services that make the
 Internet and telecommunications networks more intelligent, reliable and
 secure. Every day VeriSign helps thousands of businesses and millions of
 consumers connect, communicate, and transact with confidence. Additional news
 and information about the company is available at http://www.verisign.com .
 
     Statements in this announcement other than historical data and information
 constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the
 Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
 These statements involve risks and uncertainties that could cause VeriSign's
 actual results to differ materially from those stated or implied by such
 forward-looking statements. The potential risks and uncertainties include,
 among others, that the number of domain name registrations may not continue to
 increase in the future which could harm our business, that the current trends
 in the domain name registration industry may not be indicative of future
 results, and that ICANN or the Department of Commerce could terminate our
 agreements to be the registry operator for the .com and .net top-level domains
 which would have a material adverse impact on our business. More information
 about potential factors that could affect the company's business and financial
 results is included in VeriSign's filings with the Securities and Exchange
 Commission, including in the company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year
 ended December 31, 2002 and quarterly reports on Form 10-Q. VeriSign
 undertakes no obligation to update any of the forward-looking statement after
 the date of this press release.
 
     NOTE:  VeriSign is a registered trademark of VeriSign, Inc. in the United
 States and in foreign countries. Other names may be trademarks of their
 respective owners.
 
 

SOURCE VeriSign, Inc.