[Techtaffy Newsdesk]

More than five million domain names were added to the Internet in the third quarter of 2012, bringing the total number of registered domain names as of Sept. 30, 2012, to more than 246 million worldwide across all Top-Level Domains, according to data released by VeriSign.

The increase of 5.7 million domain names globally equates to a growth rate of 2.4 percent over the second quarter of 2012, and marks the seventh straight quarter with greater than 2 percent growth. Worldwide registrations have grown by 26.4 million, or 12 percent, since the third quarter of 2011.

The .com and .net Top-Level Domains (TLDs) experienced aggregate growth in the third quarter of 2012, reaching a combined total of approximately 119.9 million domain names in the adjusted zone for .com and .net. This represents a 1 percent increase in the base over the second quarter of 2012 and a 7.1 percent increase over the third quarter of 2011. As of Sept. 30, 2012, the base of registered names in .com equaled 105 million names, while .net equaled 14.9 million names.

New .com and .net registrations totaled 7.8 million during the third quarter of 2012. This is a 1.1 percent year-over-year decrease in new registrations. The .com/.net renewal rate for the third quarter of 2012 was 72.5 percent, slightly down from 72.9 percent for the second quarter of 2012.

Verisign’s average daily Domain Name System (DNS) query load during the third quarter of 2012 was 67 billion with a peak of 102 billion. Compared to the previous quarter, the daily average decreased 1.3 percent and the peak increased 14.1 percent.