.swiss domain names available to private individuals

Bern, 28.06.2023 - From the first half of 2024, private individuals will also be able to acquire a .swiss domain name provided they are Swiss or live in Switzerland. To this end, the Federal Council adopted a revision of the Internet Domains Ordinance (OID) on 2 June 2023. It has now tasked the Federal Office of Communications OFCOM, as the registry for the .swiss domain, to prepare for this extension.

Sole proprietorships not entered in the commercial register, such as architects or craft workers, are also to be able to acquire a .swiss domain name. The Federal Council has therefore decided to relax the conditions under the OID for allocating these domain names and is extending access to .swiss to all natural persons resident in Switzerland and Swiss nationals living abroad. The entire Swiss community will therefore have access to its own secure, high-quality domain name space. This was the Confederation's intention when it acquired use of the .swiss domain.

Expansion subject to certain conditions

To obtain a .swiss domain name, an individual must meet certain conditions. First, the name being applied for should in principle contain one or more surnames or other names registered in the civil register. In addition, Swiss nationals living abroad will only be able to use their .swiss domain names for private, non-profit or charitable purposes. Persons who do not have their place of administration in Switzerland cannot use an indication of source such as .swiss for commercial activities from abroad.

The ordinance also contains provisions for dealing with situations where several applications are submitted for the same .swiss domain name.

OFCOM will now prepare for the operational opening of .swiss to individuals, which is planned for the first half of 2024.

When the .swiss domain name was launched in 2016, it was reserved for allocation to registered companies having their headquarters and an actual site of administration in Switzerland, public authorities and other organisations under public law, as well as Swiss associations and foundations. The aim was twofold: to prevent a general rush to register .swiss, and also to enable OFCOM, which is responsible for the register, to carry out the necessary checks to ensure the quality and security of this internet domain. At the beginning of May 2023, almost 19,000 .swiss domain names were registered.

Combating cybercrime

The revision of the OID is also intended to step up the fight against cybercrime. Thus, if a website using the .ch or .swiss domain is suspected of any abuse, the holder of the domain name will have only 10 days, as opposed to the current 30 days, to identify themselves and, if necessary, provide a valid correspondence address in Switzerland. In addition, a new provision will apply to domain names that have been registered for less than 90 days. If the registry suspects illegal activity by a new website, it may block it for 10 days and then revoke it if the registrant has not provided proof of identity within that timeframe.

Address for enquiries

Federal Office of Communications OFCOM
Press Office
Tel. +41 58 460 55 50,


General Secretariat of the Federal Department of Environment, Transport, Energy and Communications; General Secretariat DETEC

The Federal Council

Federal Office of Communications