Brands and organizations face a new reputational challenge this June when new and potentially damaging generic top-level domains (gTLD) are launched on the open market.
.sucks, .porn and .adult are just some of the TDLs that will become available, and experts are now advising businesses to purchase uncomplimentary names, before it's too late.
Web hosting company 34SP.com has predicted that some of the world's biggest brands could be subject to torrents of abuse from online trolls purchasing unfavourable domain names with the sole aim of damaging the brand.
Daniel Foster, co-founder and technical director of 34SP.com said: "Businesses should do everything in their power to avoid being associated with negative messages – and it's hard to imagine domain names like .sucks and .porn will foster positivity.
“Clearly some big brands are already taking this seriously by registering controversial names while we are still in a mandated period. However, after June 1st it becomes a free for all, so I'd advise all businesses with even a slight worry about how this could affect their business to swoop up the domains sooner rather than later.
"While some might use domains for good causes, by creating sites such as cancer.sucks for example, I'd predict that many will be swooping up the new names solely for defamatory purposes."
Those who want to keep an eye on all of the savoury and unsavoury new TLDs being released and applied for can do so on the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers' (ICANN) website at http://newgtlds.icann.org/en/program-status/delegated-strings