Everyone in the modern-day world understands the serious need for privacy, and website owners are usually well aware of this since they often keep their customers’ information on file. What many don’t realize, however, is that keeping their domain registration information private is important as well. The mailing address, email address and phone numbers of most website owners are available on the WHOIS Internet directory, but there are several benefits to preventing this information from getting on that public domain.
As stated, part of the domain registration process includes sharing an email address on the WHOIS directory. Sadly, there are people out there who are sometimes called WHOIS miners that do nothing except go through the database and seek out the contact information of website owners. They can then use this information to flood a company’s email address with spam and unsolicited offers. Private registration services hide a website owner’s email and ensure that this doesn’t happen.
Domain Name Safety
One of the biggest fears with using private domain registration services has always been the possibility of losing access to a domain if the service goes out of business. This was a huge issue with the former company RegisterFly. Luckily, since customers had difficulties accessing their domains when RegisterFly went bankrupt, rules have changed to prevent this from occurring again. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, or ICANN, now requires these private registration services to keep all of their clients’ contact information in an escrow.
Whether it’s in the business world or on the reality show Survivor: control is everything. Since private domain registration services prevent all of the aforementioned information from being publicly available, it’s the website owner who can pick and choose what to release to the public. If an individual wants their organization’s phone number available but not their address, they can make it happen. Any information that gets out to the public will only do so because the website owner chooses to let it.
One of the scariest aspects of having a domain registration that isn’t private is the fact that most of the information registered on the WHOIS database can be traced back to an individual person. The Internet makes it easily possible to use an address or a phone number to find contact information on a private citizen who just so happens to own a website. This can be a huge annoyance, and in some cases, it can even be dangerous.
Depending on what type of website a person runs, there’s little doubt that there are those out there who would harass the website owners. Just imagine if private contact information was available from those who ran controversial political or religious websites. The point is that it is much safer to have this information kept private. Even if a person doesn’t run an especially hot-button issue website, it’s probably not a good idea to let an angry customer find personal contact information either.
It’s a sad fact that it can be annoying and even detrimental for a person’s or organization’s information to get out into the public. More and more, people are starting to realize that this holds true for domain registration information as well. Luckily, there are companies whose sole purpose is to keep this information private, and if a website owner decides to work with them, they’ll be on the right side of all of the aforementioned benefits.
About the Author: Researcher Shelby Warden shares this information to help small business owners protect themselves. Business owners who decide to register their own domain for the highest level of protection can find the latest updates on domain registrars here. Domain Raccoon is a well-known database of domain registrars that provides users with unbiased, fact-based information.