The character set allowed in the Domain Name System is based on ASCII and does not allow the representation of names and words of many languages in their native scripts or alphabets. ICANN approved the Internationalized domain name (IDNA) system, which maps Unicode strings used in application user interfaces into the valid DNS character set by an encoding called Punycode. For example, københavn.eu is mapped to xn--kbenhavn-54a.eu. Many registries have adopted IDNA.
Trademark Holder Registration (also known as Sunrise) is available only to verified trademark holders. This phase is the first chance anyone has to register a new domain. However, to register a domain during this period you must already have your trademark(s) validated with the Trademark Clearinghouse (TMCH). After your trademark is validated, the TMCH will send you an SMD (Signed Mark Data) file that you must use to complete your registration.
ICANN publishes the complete list of TLD registries and domain name registrars. Registrant information associated with domain names is maintained in an online database accessible with the WHOIS protocol. For most of the 250 country code top-level domains (ccTLDs), the domain registries maintain the WHOIS (Registrant, name servers, expiration dates, etc.) information.
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