Before you begin
Use this guide if you want to apply for a vic.gov.au domain name and your organisation is a Victorian:
- government department or agency
- local government entity
- hospital or health service
- statutory authority
- a defined government body
What is a vic.gov.au domain name?
A domain name is a unique web or email address. A Victorian Government digital presence is identified by ‘.vic.gov.au’ after the domain name.
What does the Victorian Government recommend?
User test the domain name before you submit it for approval.
Why apply for and manage a vic.gov.au domain name?
A vic.gov.au domain name helps citizens identify a digital presence, for example, a website or email address, as belonging to the Victorian Government. It directs citizens to Victorian Government digital resources and reassures them they're reading legitimate government information.
What standards must be met?
- All Victorian Government websites must have a domain name ending in vic.gov.au
- Before you apply for a domain name, read the Gov.au Eligibility and Allocation and check the criteria for choosing domain name.
IP address management
The WoVG Standard – Information Security – IP Address for publicly routable IPv4 addresses within the whole of Victorian Government (WoVG).
Getting it approved
Digital Management Committee (DMC) approval
All new domain names must be approved by your department or agency’s Digital Management Committee (DMC) (or its local equivalent) before implementation and use. To do this, download a Domain Name Approval form from your intranet and submit a signed copy to your local DMC (or its equivalent). You can also get a domain name approval form from the Victorian Government Domain Name Provider at
Once the DMC approve it, they will make the domain name application on your behalf and will send a final signed copy to the Victorian Government domain name provider at (Department of Premier and Cabinet).
Step 1: Choose a domain name
Consider an existing domain name
Before applying for a new domain name, consider whether your needs can be met by using an existing digital presence, such as a website.
Consider a sub-domain
A sub-domain name is created by replacing the www with a word that describes the content.
For example, 'regions' is a sub-domain of engage.vic.gov.au: regions.engage.vic.gov.au.
Sub-domains don't need to be registered. However, your department or agency’s DMC (or its equivalent) needs to approve a sub-domain.
Use vic.gov.au unless there's a good reason not to
A vic.gov.au domain name is important to help citizens identify Victorian Government websites and content. If you want to use a domain name other than vic.gov.au you'll need to present the Department of Premier and Cabinet with a business case for doing so.
Check the name is available
On the Government Domain Names website, use the 'Apply for a new gov.au domain name' tool to check if the name is available.
Test your prospective name
User-test your domain name before submission. This includes checking Google for keywords.
Don’t depend on the ‘www’
Make sure the website can be reached without the user typing in ‘www’ before the web address. Users now drop ‘www’ from website addresses and agencies should accommodate this. Have the domain name resolve to the ‘non-www’ version, with ‘www’ redirecting to it.
Tip: You’ll also need to store the digital presence on a server, referred to as ‘hosting’. Once you’ve finalised where to host your digital presence, you’ll have the ‘nameserver’ details.
Once you have the details, remember to update your domain name account details with this information.
Step 2: Manage your domain name
Assign a registrant
Select an individual to take responsibility for the ongoing management of the domain name. They will take charge of registering the domain name, deal with all correspondence, and authorise changes. The domain name guidelines provide a full outline of the role of the registrant.
Provide accurate and up-to-date account details
All domain names must have accurate account details (that is, contact information) because the invoice and reminder emails are sent to the email address listed for the account. While you do need to use a personal name when you fill out the application, try to use a generic or positional email address, so emails are not lost if you or the owner moves on. The account holder is referred to as the ‘registrant’.
Renew your domain name
Domain names need to be renewed every 2 years. If a domain name isn’t renewed there’s a grace period of 180 days. However, you can't update the details in the grace period.
Step 3: Transfer domain names
You can transfer a domain name to another account holder (‘registrant’) if, for example, you need to move a domain name from 1 department or agency to another.
Step 4: Retire your unused domain names
Domain names should be retired when:
- your website is being decommissioned or archived
- a redirect is no longer being used
- an email address is no longer being used
- an internal application is no longer being used
The Domain name explain how to retire a domain name. The domain name provider approves all deletion requests.
Related how-to guides
Reviewed 17 October 2018