Here are a few fundamental reasons why:
- This change will increase the security and searchability of our online presence.
- The first set of standards for domains, developed in the 1980s, originally designated .com for commercial purposes and .gov for government.
- To maintain domain integrity, eligibility is limited to qualified government organizations and programs.
- Having a managed domain name such as .gov assures users that they are accessing an official U.S. government site.
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Riverbender designed, maintains, and hosts the City of Alton webpage. The old domain name will continue to work for a period of time.
“There are several reasons why the switch from .com to .gov is necessary," Director of Information Technology Jarvis T. Swope said. "The biggest reason is that .gov is controlled by federal government domains that are more secure and harder to spoof. Common commercial domains like .com, .net, .org, and .us are not as tightly controlled as .gov web address extensions."
Swope added: "The .govs are more strictly regulated and we can place a certain amount of additional trust into the .gov domains," Swope said. "The new City of Alton domain name is already in effect and the old e-mail addresses will still be in effect for about a year.
"As an example, if you send an e-mail to email@example.com, or firstname.lastname@example.org the e-mail will still go to him at the new cityofaltonil.com, Swope added.
Swope stressed the City of Alton will also own the old domain names from alton-il.com to altonpolice.com and cityofaltonil.com forever.
Swope said there is a registration process done every year in the .gov process.
"You have to re-register every year," he said. "A lot of government agencies have already done it. I believe Madison County has done it over the past year. All the counties in Illinois will eventually change to .govs. We have been looking at doing this in Alton for years. It took about a month to get the change made."
Swope anticipates the .gov e-mail to be active sometime later this year. This encompasses 250 users, he said.
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