If you have ever contemplated launching a business, starting a cooking blog, or creating an eCommerce site in support of your passion, you know the feeling when the domain provider sends you the email congratulations your domain name is registered.
I remember when I registered my first domain name for pastaonthefloor.com. It was 2009 and I was looking to tell a story, my Italian life story. It has given me great joy ever since. In 2017 I registered putanotherway.com, in an entrepreneurial spirit and how lucky am I that I can do this job every day?!
We design and build websites and deliver custom content for clients as they begin or refresh their businesses. Registering a domain name is part of the process. It never ceases to amaze me that people are not aware of the significance of their domain name. Especially the fact that the domain name and the legal entity name should be the same, and that the ownership should be with them…. only.
Someone can steal aka hijack your domain name
Stealing domain names is big business. Your domain name is the gateway to your business and appears in all your marketing materials. Valuable domain names are often targeted because the thieves can hold the name ransom for big money.
Take steps to protect yourself. Set up Two Factor Authentication for all your accounts including the company where your domain names are registered. This extra step will protect you if someone has your username, password, or account number.
Make sure you are the owner of the domain
Never let anyone register your domain name for you. When clients ask us to do this for them, we politely refuse and explain why. We were building a website for a wonderful business and when it came time to release the new website, she did not have access to her account and worse yet had difficulty locating the right party. Always ensure you are the contact and owner of the domain name.
Nothing more to say on this one. Purchase the domain for at least 2 to 3 years at a time and auto renew. Set an annual calendar meeting with yourself to log into your account and check your contact information and credit card expiration date. Updating and checking the email address is important because the communication from the vendor is critical.
Keep your information safe.
Business owners are busy people, and many cannot allocate the time to mange the minutia of day-to-day operations. Giving access to your domains and websites to an employee or outside vendor must be decided with the utmost care and thought. If you have a dispute with an employee, or your developer closes her business or sells it, what happens to your domain name? It can be sold, or allowed to lapse, exposing you and your company to significant damage and loss.
Other suggestions for account safety include:
- Creating a separate email for the accounts to manage your domain name(s). It keeps would-be hackers out of your main email accounts
- Print and store the account information along with username and passwords in a safe place. With the advent of electronic password keepers, we have become dependent, and lax with insuring we do not lose access credentials. It is ok to go old school and print them.
- Enable domain locking and prevent the thief from transferring your domain to another registrar. Check with your provider as most enable this option.
We could go on forever on this subject. Simply put: protect your business and your domain.
We build and design websites to help you succeed and grow.
Treat your domain name like your most prized possession. To your business, it is an extremely treasured possession. We hope these tips help and inspire you to take 15 minutes to contact your provider and review your domain names and contact information.
Be safe and have fun with your website. After all, it is your voice.