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Mass.Gov Website Domain Name Request for your Government Website

If you are a government employee or agency trying to set up a website for your constituents, this page will walk you through the steps you need to take.

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The Details of Mass.Gov Website Domain Name Request for your Government Website

Features for Mass.Gov Website Domain Name Request for your Government Website

As of 2021, all official Commonwealth government websites must have a ‘Mass.gov’ domain, like "unemployment.mass.gov" or "paidleave.mass.gov." A Mass.gov domain name helps establish public trust, ensures a consistent look and feel across government platforms, and adds security to protect constituent and government information. The Executive Office of Technology Services and Security (EOTSS) manages and approves all Mass.gov domain names.

Before submitting a domain request, please review the website domain policy, which includes a naming convention. Requests will only be approved for applications that are in compliance.

If you are requesting a domain for a website that is only available to Commonwealth employees inside the Mass.gov network, please submit a DNS request instead.

What information you need to provide when you request your domain

As part of requesting a domain, you’ll need to provide information about your website’s Domain Name System (DNS) record, IP address, and/or Fully Qualified Domain Name (FQDN).  

Here are the fields you’ll need to fill out:

  • DNS Host Name: These are the 2 variables that will make up your new site's URL. Suppose you want your new government website's URL to be "new-website.mass.gov." The DNS Host Name is whatever you want your unique identifier to be. It will always come before the Domain in the URL. If you want your new website to be "new-website.mass.gov," your DNS Host Name will be "new-website."  The DNS Host Name will need to adhere to the domain policy’s naming convention
  • Type of domain record: 
    • A records (also called Host records) are for new websites that are being hosted by the Commonwealth
    • CNAME records are for new websites that are being hosted externally by a vendor or other partner
  • For A records, you'll need to input an IP address: This is the IP address where we will need to direct the new Mass.gov Domain. The person you are working with on hosting will be the best resource to ask for the correct IP address.
  • For CNAME records, you'll need to enter a Fully Qualified Domain Name, or FQDN: The FQDN is a full name of the hosting target, which is a little more comprehensive than just an IP address. Vendors will often use FQDNs so they can retain the ability to bring new servers live even if IP addresses change. Ask your vendor or whoever you are working with on hosting what the correct FQDN is.

How to request Mass.Gov Website Domain Name Request for your Government Website

After you've been approved for Mass.Gov Website Domain Name Request for your Government Website

Disallow traffic to any non-government domains

If you requested a CNAME record and a vendor is hosting your new site on their network, then your site may be available in 2 places once your mass.gov domain name has been set up: on mass.gov at your requested domain name, and on your vendor's site at the FQDN they provided for your DNS records request.

Since all Commonwealth government websites must use a mass.gov domain, you'll need to work with your vendor to disallow traffic to their FQDN and ensure that mass.gov is the only place where people can find your new website.

You can look up the DNS of your site using your new URL and see its "target domain" - where the URL is currently being directed. If you're working with a vendor, this target domain is likely being pointed somewhere other than Mass.gov. Ask your vendor to point the target domain to your new Mass.gov URL.

Policies for Mass.Gov Website Domain Name Request for your Government Website

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