Domain Name Ransom by Tao Digital


This week we have a guest blog from Matt Tomkin at Tao Digital.
Tao Digital provide clear and concise marketing strategies for businesses that want online success. 

Today Matt teaches us about the dangers of Domain Ransom!

Over to Matt...

What is Domain Name Ransom?

It’s very likely you have never heard of Domain Name Ransom, but they affect more businesses than you think.

What we mean by Domain Name Ransom is when a ‘trusted’ web designer, web developer or even a friend from the pub who knows how to register a domain name, does so on your behalf. The problem arises when your business grows and you need to bring in further outside help to move your website forward.

Who registered your domain name? How do you get access? Can I access the records behind my domain name? All questions you’ll potentially ask yourself if you haven’t been involved from the start.

We’ve come across a number of instances over the years where clients don't know who has registered the website address, who is hosting the website etc. It becomes very clear when we check this on their behalf that they have never really considered the impact this might have further down the line.

We have seen websites literally been switched off overnight by some web designers once they have received confirmation of another provider or a new agency working with them.

What should you be aware of?

Register the domain name yourself.

The first thing to be aware of is, know who owns what and where it is. So for example, you have a domain name which is the address people will use to find your website. The domain name then points to the server that the website is located on. This is done through the DNS records.

If, for example, you have no access to this, you won’t be able to change your website in the future. You'll have no ability to add email addresses or have any access to make any changes or improvements you might need.

The main lesson here is, set-up an account with a domain registrar (It’s easier than it sounds) and then you purchase that domain name. You can with some of the better domain registrars give access to your digital marketing agency to make any changes you might need and also your IT company who need to help with emails etc.

If you’re worried about your domain then you can check all the registration information in a publicly available directory. Whois

Where is your site hosted and who owns the server?

Another major thing you need to consider, where is your website hosted? There have been instances where websites get hosted on overcrowded servers. The site loads really slowly and this can have serious ramifications on both User Experience and your site search visibility.

With Google recently announcing that Page Speed will finally be a ranking factor in where your website sits in the search engine results, it’s vitally important you know where the site is sat.

This is typical of a really cheap hosting package where the server resource is shared out among a large number of websites on the same server.

To check where your website is hosted at the minute, take a look here who is hosting this this tool will tell you which hosting provider the website is currently sat with.

We can’t over-stress how important this is for the future prosperity of your business. If you need any help at all either ring the team at Full Circle or contact us at Tao.

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