We put U.S. governments on the internet.
Why use .gov?
.gov is a ‘top-level domain’, or TLD, similar to .com, .org, or .us. Enterprises use a TLD to register a domain name (often simply called a domain) for use in their online services, like a website or email.
In many well-known TLDs, anyone can register a domain for a fee, and as long as they pay there aren’t many questions asked about whether the name they chose corresponds to their real-life name or services. While this can be a useful property for creative communication, it can also make it difficult to know whether the people behind a name are really who they claim to be.
It should be easy to identify governments on the internet, and using a .gov domain shows you’re official. The public shouldn’t have to guess whether the site they’re on or the email that hits their inbox is genuine.
CISA, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, sponsors the .gov TLD and makes it available solely to U.S.-based government organizations and publicly controlled entities. For those that qualify for a .gov domain, it’s available without a fee.
Additionally, using .gov increases security:
- Multi-factor authentication is enforced on all accounts in the .gov registrar, different than commercial registrars.
- We ‘preload’ all new domains, which requires browsers to only use a secure HTTPS connection with your website. This protects your visitors’ privacy and ensures the content you publish is exactly what’s received.
- You can add a security contact for your domain, making it easier for the public to tell you of a potential security issue with your online services.
If you’re from the government, we’re here to help. Check out our registration page to begin.
What does .gov do?
We make it easy to register a .gov domain name and ensure that the name resolves in the global domain name system (DNS). DNS maps easy-to-remember names on top of hard-to-recall numbers, allowing you to use
cisa.gov instead of something like
.gov domains are intertwined with access to public services. That makes the .gov TLD critical infrastructure for governments, citizens, and international internet users. We work to make .gov a trusted, secure space by:
- administering our domain requirements,
- publishing the complete list of .gov domains,
- recommending security best practices, and
- implementing key initiatives to protect the entire namespace.
We put U.S. governments on the internet, but there are some things we don’t do. We don’t offer authoritative DNS services, host .gov websites or email, or monitor all .gov network traffic.
Have a question? Contact us.