A Pakistani domain grabber based in Karachi has registered the web address www.burjkhalifa.com Image Credit: Supplied photo

Dubai: The renaming of the Burj Dubai into Burj Khalifa by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, attracted a lot of interest from people who followed the inauguration on Monday evening. Some of them even started immediate activity.

Almost at the same time the renaming was announced during Shaikh Mohammad's short speech, a Pakistani domain grabber based in Karachi registered the web address www.burjkhalifa.com which, surprisingly, was still freely available at that time.

Soon after the news about the registration spread, access to the personal data of the owner was blocked by the privacy feature of the global web address database.

However, on Tuesday a new database entry allegedly stated that the address now belongs to a Dubai resident who runs a popular auction site for licence number plates.

Contacted by Gulf News, the person denied that he is the new owner of the burjkhalifa.com address.

"I have not actively registered the domain and do not know why my name and data are mentioned in this respect. Somebody is playing a prank on me."

He said he has received several calls from people asking him if the web address is going to be auctioned.

Normally, domain grabbing activities target a sale of the domain to the entity connected to it. But, in this case, it is not certain if the new owner of the web address will succeed, as "public" domain names normally cannot be held by private persons.

Difficult case

However, the owners of the tower will have to claim for the web name at the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) or the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), which oversees global IP address allocation, or, to be precise, at a respective US court, which can take months.

Jurisdiction is often a problem, as different courts have ruled that the proper location for a trial is that of the plaintiff, the defendant, or the location of the server through which the name is registered.

In a radio statement on Tuesday, a representative of the UAE Telecommunications Regulatory Authority said that the domain burjkhalifa.ae has been registered for the developer of the tower.

TRA secures burjkhalifa.ae
Meanwhile, Mohammad Gheyath, Executive Dirrector of the Technology Development Affairs at the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) , told the radio station Dubai Eye on Tuesday that the TRA has reserved the domain name burjkhalifa.ae for the Burj Khalifa.

WAM quoted Gheyath as saying that the domain name has been reserved to safeguard it from cybersquatters.

With input from WAM