Years ago when looking at choosing a domain for my personal email and blog, I looked at various different domain options. In the end I settled on matthill.me.uk as it was available. Another perceived benefit was .eu was shorter to type than .com or co.uk (not that my name was available for either TDL’s).
I had little desire to purchase a vanity domain such as .blog for example, many of these are controlled by companies, which might not exist in the future, or significantly increase their prices at a later date. As you might have noticed many of these vanity domains get very expensive after the first year.
Anyway, after reading the Eurid website and concluding a .EU domain was for me I registered my domain, gradually transferring all my online accounts over to my .EU domain. Since then over the years I’ve also built this blog up, publishing articles when I have something worthwhile to share with like minded people.
Now fast forward to the present day, just over half the people in the UK who voted chose to leave the .EU. Unfortunately because the UK is leaving the EU it appears UK citizens will have their .EU domains revoked. This is due to happen on the 31st March 2019 in a no-deal Brexit scenario, or on the 1st January 2021 with a deal in place according to Eurids Brexit notice.
Needless to say this poses a massive security risk to any UK citizen who purchased an .EU domain and is actively using it for their personal email / online presence. I now have to log in to every online service I use and change the email associated with that service to an alternative non .EU domain before 1st March 2019. After that I presume my domain will become available for registration again, if not immediately then at some point in the future.
This will allow anyone who purchases the domain in the future to recover any accounts I leave associated with my domain. In addition it will allow them to receive any email’s sent to me by contacts who don’t update their address book with my new email address.
Another major problem is I will also have to change this blogs domain from matthill.me.uk to a new non .EU domain, this means I will loose any linkbacks from other sites which link to my past blog posts. I can obviously redirect them in the time I still have control of matthill.me.uk, however once the domain is revoked those linkbacks are essentially useless.
Needless to say the EU are well and truly screwing over UK citizens who own .EU domains… if we have to have our domains revoked, it would be nice to have some assurances no one else will be allowed to register the domain anytime soon. As it stands at the moment a spammer / scammer could well own my domain this time next year.
With the above in mind I have to wonder what European citizen or business would knowingly purchase and use a .EU domain to use for anything worthwhile, knowing it could be revoked for political reasons out their control in the future. I suspect many never believed the UK would actually leave the EU, I certainly didn’t.
After Brexit it’s more than possible other counties could leave the EU in the future.
Hopefully European citizens think twice before purchasing an .EU domain, I certainly would if I was still going to be a citizen in an EU country. I’d recommend people stick to a domain extension which belongs to their country or the traditional .com, .net or .org domains.
.EU domains shouldn’t be seen as a safe option for any sort of web presence, I’ve certainly learned a hard lesson here.