14 December 2022
Domain name security is an essential part of protecting your brand and reputation, and ensuring the long-term success and profitability of your business. By implementing strong security measures and regularly monitoring and managing your domain portfolio, you can safeguard your domain name and protect your business from online threats and abuses.
Common Domain Name Security Risks
There are several common security risks that businesses need to be aware of when it comes to managing their domain names. Some of the most common risks include:
- Domain hijacking: Domain hijacking is a type of cyber attack in which an attacker gains unauthorized access to a domain name and takes control of it. This can allow the attacker to redirect traffic from the domain to their own website, steal sensitive information, or use the domain for other malicious purposes.
- Domain squatting: Domain squatting, also known as cybersquatting, is the practice of registering a domain name with the intent of profiting from the goodwill of a trademark belonging to someone else. This can lead to legal disputes and financial losses for the trademark owner.
- Domain expiration: If a domain name is not renewed before its expiration date, it will become available for registration by anyone. This can lead to domain name theft, where a third party registers the domain and takes control of it.
- Domain phishing: Domain phishing is a type of cyber attack in which attackers create fraudulent websites that are designed to look like legitimate sites, in order to trick users into entering sensitive information such as login credentials or financial information. This can lead to data breaches and other security incident.
To protect against these and other domain name security risks, businesses should implement strong security measures and regularly monitor and manage their domain portfolio, this includes:
- Ensure domain contact details are up to date. Make sure you review your domains contact details regularly to ensure they are up to date. As people come and go within organisations it’s important this information is regularly kept up to date. Here at brandsec, we strongly recommend using contact details associated to the organisation rather than an individual (E.g. Domain Manager instead of an individual’s name such as John Smith). It saves the hassle of updating domain names every time someone leaves an organisation and does not disclose personal information.
- Be aware of your renewal dates. Set your domains to auto-renew. Often we learn of customers ignoring renewal notices, only to find that they have then missed a renewal of a critical domain, which then, in turn, brings down important business services such as website and email. The benefit of using a corporate domain management provider such as brandsec, ensure all your domains are set to auto-renew and you don’t have to worry about the hassle of renewing each of your domain names.
- Registry Lock. Add an additional layer of protection for your domain’s names by implementing a registry lock. A registry lock provides the highest level of protection for a domain name whereby certain domain details will not change without the owner’s consent. If any changes need to be made to a domain name that has registry lock implemented, including modifying DNS records, changing ownership or registrar transfers, a stringent verification process takes place. Read more on Registry lock here
- Add WHOIS domains privacy registration details. With a lot of mixed reviews on whether WHOIS privacy registrations are worth it, it’s a difficult decision that domain owners are faced with on whether to implement. However, WHOIS privacy can help to reduce and eliminate spam coming through to businesses (as emails will be hidden) and avoid fraudulent contact with your customers. Its also a good way to hide what you are doing as a business from your competitors and potential cyber squatters E.g. If you are looking to launch a new brand, you don’t want your biggest competitor knowing about it. Through WHOIS privacy registration, your company’s information will be hidden and information pertaining to your registrar will only be visible in the WHOIS.
- Ensure your registrar has 2 factor authentication. There is nothing worse than getting a notification or email that one of your accounts is potential compromised. By having 2 Factor Authentication (2FA) in place at your current registrar, provides an additional layer of security when logging in and provides that piece of mind that your account is secure. 2FA is becoming increasingly popular within business IT Security requirements, therefore, ensuring your registrar has 2FA functionality is crucial.
- Monitor who has access to your domain name account. Staff often come and go, so keeping an eye on who has access to your domain name account is critical for maintaining the integrity of its security. Access to the domain name portal should be kept to a minimum and regularly monitored. We also recommend giving people ‘read view’ instead of write permissions where practical.
- Appropriate DNS. A lot of brands spend millions on hardware, redundancies and network monitoring tools, yet don’t invest in their DNS infrastructure. As DNS DDoS attacks are on the rise, targeting ISPs, Domain Registrars and similar free DNS services, we recommend that our clients use an enterprise-grade DNS network for critical domain names.
Why Domain Name Security Matters
Protect your brand and reputation: By protecting your domain name from abuse and unauthorized use, you can prevent damage to your brand and reputation. This can help you to maintain the trust and loyalty of your customers, and to avoid potential losses that can result from negative publicity or customer dissatisfaction.
Protecting your revenue streams: Domain name abuse and unauthorized use can result in financial losses for businesses, such as lost sales and damage to your brand’s value. By implementing strong domain name security measures, you can protect your revenue streams and prevent these losses.
Enhance customer trust and satisfaction: By taking steps to protect your domain name and ensure that customers are only accessing genuine websites, you can enhance customer trust and satisfaction. This can help you to build long-term relationships with your customers, and to drive repeat business and positive word-of-mouth referrals.
Protect against cyber attacks: Domain name security is also important for protecting against cyber attacks, such as DNS spoofing, cache poisoning, and amplification attacks. By implementing strong security measures, you can prevent these attacks and protect your business from data breaches, malware infections, and other security incidents.
Brandsec is a corporate domain name management and brand protection company that look after many of Australia, New Zealand and Asia’s top publicly listed brands. We provide monitoring and enforcement services, DNS, SSL Management, domain name brokerage and dispute management and brand security consultation services.