What You Need to Know About Domain Privacy

Domain Privacy

 

Building a new website is an investment. It takes time and money to get your site up and running, and you might have to cut some corners to save a few bucks. After registering your domain name and purchasing web hosting, your remaining budget may limit you to the number of extra products and services that you add-on. But there’s one service that you should always choose – Domain Privacy.

 

We hear time and time again of customers registering domains without Privacy only to watch their email inboxes fill with spam in the following weeks. They will receive pitches for search engine optimization and marketing services, website builder discounts, and all sorts of small business-related offers, both legitimate and not. When this happens, it’s a common misconception that the registrar sold the customer’s personal information to a third party. If this scenario sounds familiar to you, there’s good news and bad news. The good news is that any reputable registrar will never sell your personal information. The even better news is that there’s a great way to prevent all that spam. The bad news is that your personal information is publicly available for anybody to see. So, how do you fix all this? With Domain Privacy!

 

Domain Privacy is available for most domain extensions but many registrars allow you to opt out of it, leading many people to believe that it isn’t important. The truth is Domain Privacy is necessary for you to protect your identity and information. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) requires that your name, mailing address, email address, and phone number be publicly published on the WHOIS database when you register a domain. This is how third parties collect your information. They will send you all sorts of tempting deals, but as we mentioned before, it can be tricky to spot which ones are legitimate. Scammers can get extremely crafty and they will pose as your registrar or WHOIS for a various reasons: to get more money or personal information, to hijack your domain, or to inject malware onto your computer.

 

Don’t take the chance of being duped. Stop the spammers and scammers before they even have the chance to abuse your personal information. With Domain Privacy, your personal information is hidden from the WHOIS database. Instead, when a third party looks up your domain, your registrar’s contact information shows up in its place.

 

Domain privacy

Your personal information displayed on the WHOIS database without Domain Privacy versus how your “personal information” would appear with Domain Privacy from registrar Domain.com.

 

Because Privacy hides your personal information, it protects you from:

  • Domain-related spam
  • The selling of your personal information
  • Junk mail and sales calls
  • Identity theft and fraud
  • Stalkers and harassers
  • A third party taking ownership of your domain through phishing, fake offers, and hidden ownership clauses found in the fine print of certain offers/deals

 

If you already have a registered domain name and don’t have Privacy, it’s usually easy to add. Visit your domain registrar’s website to learn how you can purchase it for your unprotected domains.

 

Although Domain Privacy is an optional purchase, you shouldn’t let that influence your Privacy decision. Instead, you should consider the value of protecting your personal information, your domain name, and your webiste. There are certain cases where it’s in your best interest for your information to be publicly available. There are also certain domain extensions that don’t allow Domain Privacy, particularly geo-domains. For most individuals though, Domain Privacy is the way to go. Contemplate your risks and decide what’s best for you.

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