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Welsh Government staff must follow this policy to buy any domain name.

First published:
12 November 2019
Last updated:

All domain purchases must be carried out by the Corporate Digital Team (CDT).

Contact us when you are developing a new project, service, campaign or organisation. We can then discuss a suitable domain name.

External facing websites and services must follow the communication and marketing approvals process. We will only buy or set up a domain for an external website or service once the site or service has had approval.

Domains for Welsh Government funded websites

All Welsh Government funded websites should use a gov.wales and llyw.cymru subdomain. Any exemptions have to be approved by the Director of Communications.

If you want a gov.wales and llyw.cymru domain and email address, you must apply to the Welsh Naming and Approvals Committee (WNAC).

If your website has approval to use a non gov.wales and llyw.cymru domain, CDT will buy a domain name on your behalf. This will usually be a .wales and .cymru domain name. If the site has a significant global audience, a .com domain may be more appropriate.

All domain names must:

  • be clear, unambiguous, easy to read and easy to share
  • use words in lowercase
  • not contain acronyms or abbreviations

CDT will buy your domain name(s) and claim the cost back from you. Please provide your budget and cost centre codes. A number of domain names are renewed automatically and we will charge this to the same code. CDT will decide if a domain is no longer required.

Welsh language version of websites

The Welsh language version must have its own domain for example llyw.cymru. Sub folders are not acceptable for example myenglishdomain.com/cy.

Services

Welsh Government services will have a 4th level domain so that they follow the pattern below:

https://nameofservice.service.gov.wales

https://enwgwasanaeth.gwasanaeth.llyw.cymru

Defensive domain name purchasing

We do not recommend purchasing domain names just so that others cannot use them. If a site or service is high risk or high profile you should consider if the risk justifies the cost to buy the related domain name. CDT will make the final decision on whether to buy domains for this reason.

Ownership

All domain names we buy will be owned by Welsh Government. We will only transfer ownership in exceptional cases.

If you or your suppliers have bought domains for a Welsh Government funded website, we will transfer ownership to CDT. This will happen at the earliest opportunity and we will claim the cost back from you. 

Renewing and retiring a domain name

CDT will manage the renewal process. We will renew non gov.wales domains for 2 years following the end of their active use or promotion. At the end of this 2 years, we will decide if we release or renew the domain.

Promoting a domain name

You can only promote a domain name when you have:

  • received written confirmation from the CDT that the purchase is complete
  • checked that it is set up as intended (for example, pointing to the correct website)
  • ensured appropriate use of Welsh and English domain names

If you use a gov.wales and llyw.cymru sub domain, we will set up a short URL for you to promote. This means that the url you promote will look like this gov.wales/workingwales (not workingwales.gov.wales).

You must not:

  • use a gov.wales domain to redirect to a non gov.wales domain
  • use a non gov.wales domain to redirect to a gov.wales domain
  • use a forward slash at the end of your url

Domain Name System (DNS) changes

If you need to make a change to your domain name, email CDT to explain what changes you need and why. Please allow at least 5 working days for us to complete your request.

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