September 25, 2020

It’s Official: Firms Can Now Snag a .CPA Domain For Added Public Trust (Or Something Like That)

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In June of last year the AICPA announced it finally managed to convince ICANN — the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers — to let it manage the .cpa domain, citing consumer trust in an increasingly dangerous internet landscape. After all, you wouldn’t want Certified Parking Attendants or Citizens of Pennsylvania hijacking that all-important top-level domain and diluting public trust in the CPA brand.

Effective September 1, licensed firms can apply for a .cpa domain from the AICPA and CPA.com. Registration will open to individual licensed CPAs in 2021. According to a Journal of Accountancy article about the open registration period, firms have until October 31 of this year to request their .cpa domain. “No one gets to jump the queue in this initial phase – domain names will be awarded according to logic-based criteria verified by an independent third-party,” said the JofA. When Domain Name Wire tried to learn more about the “systematic logic-based process” via which .cpa domains will be allocated, an agent at domains.cpa told them:

We have a process that we can’t share due to manipulation of the process. Please just choose domains that are most similar to your own.

Firms that want to get their own .cpa domain should keep in mind that they are expected to redirect their existing company website within one month of purchase. It also seems the intent here is for firms to use domains that align with their brand (in other words, their firm name), and not wild generics like BestMafuckinTaxGuy.cpa or whatever.

“Trust is a crucial commodity in business and on the Internet, and it’s a cornerstone of the CPA profession,” AICPA President and CEO Barry Melancon, CPA, CGMA, said today in a press release. “The .cpa domain will signal you’re doing business with a licensed CPA firm or individual CPA, so it provides an additional level of trust, security and brand recognition in online interactions.”

It is believed the AICPA paid $2 million to snag the .cpa domain. Sorry you missed the opportunity to grab it out from under the AICPA, Certified Parking Attendants.

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