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Google made a rookie error and forgot to renew a domain name

There's a reason why South African web surfers couldn't access this morning.

Published onJuly 1, 2022

Google South Africa homepage
Hadlee Simons / Android Authority
  • Google seemingly let its South African domain name expire today.
  • was unavailable for several hours as a result.
  • The website seems to be up and running again.

Making sure your domain name is renewed is one of the most basic yet important tasks you should do if you own a website. However, it seems like even Google isn’t immune from forgetting to do so.

Google’s South African website ( was inaccessible for a few hours today, and it seems that the domain name wasn’t renewed (h/t: Marce Bester and Marcel Oudejans on Twitter).

A whois lookup indeed revealed that the domain name expired on June 25, 2022 and was pending deletion on July 1. Check out the screenshot below.

Google’s local PR representatives issued a statement to Android Authority on the matter:

Google is aware of an issue affecting its domain name and is taking steps to reinstate it. In the meantime, the domain remains fully functional and we encourage South African users to make use of this URL instead.

Nevertheless, it seems like was back up and running at the time of writing, while the whois information also seems to have been updated to reflect the domain name renewal. So presumably things are back to normal for the company’s regional arm.

This wouldn’t be the first time Google let one of its domain names lapse though. The company let lapse back in 2015, with a former employee briefly buying it before returning the domain name.

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