NEW YORK (AP) - The agency that oversees Internet addresses has renewed a contract for operating the database of ".com" names. That database is in a set of computers and contains details that Internet-connected machines use in finding websites and routing email for the millions of Internet addresses that end in ".com."
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers said Thursday that VeriSign Inc. will keep running the database, but the new contract includes security and other improvements.
The announcement of last Saturday's approval came during a weeklong conference in Prague that wraps up Friday.
Operating the ".com" database is lucrative for VeriSign, which collects fees for each address registered. Those fees add up to millions of dollars.
The six-year contract renewal must be approved by the U.S. Commerce Department, which rarely exercises its veto power over ICANN. The current contract expires Nov. 30, 2012.
Separately, ICANN is working to create thousands of alternatives to ".com," though other new suffixes so far have not had the same popularity.
Shares of VeriSign fell $1.17, or 2.7 percent, to $42.45 by midday Thursday, a bit more than the markets overall, but they remain near their full-year high of $44. They've traded as low as $27 in the past 52 weeks.
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