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December 29, 2015

If You Don’t Have These, You Don’t Have Full Control of Your Domain Name

Your domain name is a part of your intellectual property and is a major asset for your business. It is akin to your business’ goodwill and is an integral part of the face your business shows to the outside world. Losing control of certain aspects of your domain name is as good as losing your goodwill and will damage the reputation of your business. This article discusses the need to maintain control over your domain name.

Nameserver Control

Name servers or DNS servers allow you to point your domain name and sub-domain names to any hosting account or online service that you like. The DNS servers contain a list of all the different servers or services associated with your domain name. If you have a separate mail server and separate hosting server, these are specified in your DNS records on the name servers mentioned. If you cannot change your name servers at will, then it is as good as having no control of your domain name. Apart from controlling your website, mail services and any external Web services that are also controlled by the name servers, this points to the right servers for the different services.

Auth Code Control

Owning a domain name means that you also have a right to shift the domain name to the provider of your choosing.

This means that you can choose which domain provider you want to do business with and which domains you want to keep where. Without an authorization code, you cannot shift your domain to another registrar, it acts as the transfer password for your domain name.

Registrar Lock

Registrars usually enable a theft protection mechanism that is a virtual lock on your domain, which prevents you from transferring it or updating it, without unlocking it.

This can prevent accidental changes and unwanted edits to your domain settings. While most providers allow you to have direct control of your domain lock, some registrars require you to send an e-mail to deactivate the protection and transfer the domain name. As long as you can unlock the domain when you require it, you should be fine. You should at least know the procedure and process you need to follow to unlock your domain name. You may also want to try it out and then lock the domain again.

WHOIS Information Editing

The most important control you should have for your domain name is the ability to change the contact information at will. This means that you should be able to change the registrant e-mail address and contact information whenever you want to. Your domain transfer approval e-mails, important domain notifications and even mandatory renewal reminders are all sent to your registrant e-mail address.

Not having control of this e-mail address or other registrant details, is not a good practice. As soon as you can, you should change your domain contact details to the right owners. Due to recent ICANN guidelines, registrars must automatically send a verification e-mail to the registrant e-mail address of record, detailing any changes or modifications made to any domain registrant ownership information. This step was done to ensure that the domain owner is informed of any changes to his property and asset.


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