Domain Name Information Management
It is very important to make sure that your registrant contact details are up to date. Keeping registrant data up to date ensures that you can effectively manage your domain names. Out of date contact information can result in renewal notices, policy changes or important information being missed and domain names expiring or being deleted.
It is the obligation of all Registrants to ensure that their domain names contact information is correct, truthful and complete. Having incorrect details associated with a domain name creates significant unnecessary risk for brands, including:
- missing renewal notices of domain names;
- missing renewal notices for SSLs;
- policy deletions by the Registry; and
- risk of accounts being compromised.
Who owns your domain name?
It is important that businesses run an annual domain name audit to ensure that their contact details are up to date, including the entity name, email address, phone number and address. This may be a tedious task, but there are many situations where a domain name may not be registered in the correct entity. The most common are:
- Merger and Acquisition (M&A) Events: It is not unusual for brands to forget to update the whois information of incoming domain names after an M&A event. This often leads to domain names being registered to entities that no longer exist and people who are no longer with the company. For more information check out our blog on managing domain names in M&A events.
- Marketing or Digital Agencies: This is probably the most common issue we see when it comes to domain name issues. Often digital agencies will register domain names for their customers, but will use their details instead of the client. When the engagement is over, the marketing agency still owns the domain name and this is the most common reason why domain names and SSLs expire.
- Employees (ex or current): Often well intended employees will register domain names for the company and will use their details in the process. The issue is when employees leave the company and the domain name information is not updated.
- Consultants: Similar to Digital Agencies, some consultancy firms will register domain names on behalf of their customer, but use their details instead of the rightful owner.
Policy, Domain Inaccuracy and Consequences
From time to time, auDA, ICANN and other Registry authorities may undertake compliance monitoring activities in order to ensure that Registrants comply with rules in respect to their licences. This includes audits of the registry data to ensure information is correct and accurate.
.auDA or a Registrar, may suspend or cancel a licence where the registration or renewal of a domain name is found to be untrue (whether intentional or not), inaccurate or incomplete.
Recent policy changes mean that if an entity of a domain name expires, the domain name can be policy deleted by the Registry. It is essential to ensure that your domain names are registered with correct and up to date date information to avoid such issues.
Missing important notices – ensure your email is up to date
It is very important to keep your contact information up-to-date at all times, in particular your email, so that you receive important notifications about your domain name from your registrar. These notifications are typically sent via email, and if your email is not updated, you may not receive important notifications that are designed for your business’ protection.
It is recommended to use a general email, such as firstname.lastname@example.org that various people in the business have access to. Also, avoid using personal or individual email addresses.
Best Practice Domain Name Information Management
- Carry out an annual audit to ensure that all domain names contain the correct entity and contact information.
- Address any incorrect, outdated or erroneous information.
- Standardise the email address associated with your domain names.
- Create an internal domain name registration policy.
- Use pre-configured contact sets in your domain name portal.
brandsec provides free domain name audits to our clients that ensures their domain name information is up-to-date and error free. Please contact your Account Manager or email us and request your free audit.
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.