Most web owners do not know nor understand why they need to keep their private information safe from strangers. As a web owner, there is no doubt your website information is somewhere visible to unknown persons except you take the right decision of investing in domain privacy.
What is domain privacy?
After you have found that the domain name of your choice is available on the domain agent search engine and verified, you will realize that as you try to register the name, you will be required to provide a lot of your personal information before you can finally own that name. This private information is what you need to protect because you will be asked to pass those information along to the ICANN WHOIS directory which will publish it for the world to see.
What is ICANN WHOIS directory?
The full meaning of ICANN is The Internet Corporate for Assigned Names and Numbers; this body is a non-profit making organization that manages the domain name system of internet websites. However, the WHOIS directory is the body that keeps a record of the information of every active domain and who runs it. ICANN on its own cannot run things alone as far as the keeping of a website owner’s data is concerned. Instead, they partner with people who get accreditation certificate from them so they could render domain registration services quickly. Also, they will now provide the necessary information required for ICANN to add to its directory.
Here is the list of required when registering a domain
- Mailing address
- Phone number
- Email address
The image below shows an example of your information if it is not secured; it shows the registration details of a website owner or the information of the person managing the site.
Why the directory is important
The essence of this directory is to make sure there is valid information of each website owner on the web to avoid scamming. This helps to make things easy in situations when there is a need to take a legal step, or where web owners’ veers into illegal or abusive territory. If there is no record to trace offenders, authorities would not have any means of making them pay for damages and minimize harm. The WHOIS comes into play when the following things happen:
- Law enforcement agencies need the information of perpetrators
- Businesses of law firms seek to identify people found guilty of stealing or stealing sensitive properties.
- The internet company is also of the aim of reducing the power of guilty people spamming.
REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD USE DOMAIN PRIVACY
There is no how you can avoid having your information with WHO.IS, because of the purposes explained above, but over time most website owners have come up with another system such that even if your information is with WHO.IS you can still safeguard it. However, here are the reasons why you need domain privacy.
- To curb spamming: the moment you register your domain name and provide all your necessary information, you have exposed yourself to a lot of danger like spamming and hacking. Most marketers see this as an opportunity for them to build their lists that they will, in turn, sell to big organizations looking to mass email information. Even as the majority of the companies that buy this information are legit looking for leads of their own, you may not still be comfortable with the number of spam messages you will be receiving.
- Reducing identity theft: not all scammers gather people’s information for scamming some are hackers who would like to use your information to take over your site.
- Personal views and professional data: most people use a privacy setting to keep their professional and personal lifestyle unique. In most cases, particularly the celebrities they take this step so that people who are not comfortable with the outing or public speech will not be able to attach their statements with their website.
- Control of contact information: from a professional point of view, making use of a private domain compels visitors to make use of specific contact information. Instead of allowing your visitors to use your direct information to reach you, these visitors will only be able to reach you through the use of the information you make available on your website.
- Hiding your physical location: you don’t need to allow everybody knows your house, why is because you may be the type of managing an eCommerce website or a popular blog. You will not have to provide your private information so that not just everybody will be coming to your house to visit you. However, for whatever reason, you would want people to reach you; privacy to your domain will not allow the public to have your direct information.
- It’s cheap to operate: keeping your information from public view is not as expensive as most people take it. Some registrars take a few bucks of around $10 for one year, which is less than $1 per month.
How do I get it?
The process of registration varies from one registrar to the other. It’s pretty simple and not hard in any way. You will only have to decide between one or two options.
- Purchasing the privacy at point of registration: most registrars have the option of allowing you pay for the domain privacy feature immediately you are ready to register the domain name of your choice. But in case you can’t find it during registration, register your domain and later ask the customer service to help you out.
- Adding domain privacy at a later date: this is when you are an existing domain manager but just coming across the importance of domain privacy, at this stage, it is never too late to register.