The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), an organization that governs domain names, has certain requirements when registering a domain. Some personal information of the domain owner is required and made available to the public. Any Internet user can access this information for that particular domain on WHOIS records. Some of those data include name, email address, residential address, phone number, and other information. However, there is a system that can shield this information from being available to the public: domain privacy. It helps to hide the information linked to your domain name in the WHOIS database.
In this article, we discuss what domain privacy is and whether you should enable it for your website.
What is Domain Privacy?
To register a domain name, some information is required by the domain registrar to report to a public record. This public record is called a WHOIS database. It contains personal information about domain owners, which can be accessed by the public on the Internet.
If a domain owner does not want these details to be public, the domain registrar provides a privacy protection service.
Domain privacy – commonly called WHOIS privacy – is an “add on” privacy protection service offered by a domain name registrar.
The domain name registrar replaces your name, email address, phone number and other information you provided with details of a forwarding service. This process protects your data from the prying eyes of strangers.
Do You Need Domain Privacy?
As a domain owner or a person who wants to get a domain name, you might need domain privacy. Without it, some of your personal information would be available to strangers and, potentially, hackers. These people could freely pull up your details on the WHOIS database. However, making a small investment in your privacy as a website owner could help out here.
Also, there is almost no other way around masking your domain details online aside for paying for this service. In the first place, you can only register a domain with your authentic information. The domain registrar often verifies the information you provide during registration. Other options available could turn out to be a fake service or against Internet rules, which could reduce the value of your site.
With the understanding of what domain privacy is, buying this service will depend on what you want. Nonetheless, this service is optional but could be beneficial to you.
The Service Could Offer the Following Benefits:
- Prevention of Domain hijacking
- Prevention of direct contact from unwanted marketers, hackers, and spammers
- Protection of your email from unwelcome messages sent
- Protection against identity theft
- Prevents the possibility of the sale of your personal data
Having domain privacy is not mandatory since it’s not an issue for large business owners that can make their contacts available to their clients.
However, small businesses or individuals can easily encounter identity theft issues, spammers, and unwelcome marketers. So, they would probably benefit from opting for more privacy.