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Please Remember to Register Your Own Domain Name

I've been around the Internet block for nearly 13 years now, and I'm still surprised when I see this trick. A developer is hired to build a new website, and they register the domain name for the customer. They not only register it, they make themselves the registrant. No big deal, right? If you say no, then I need you to read the following.

The registrant on the domain name is the person who legally owns the domain name. If you part ways with your developer who is the registrant of your domain, legally they don't have to give it back to you. They own it. Moving away from them, or moving your site, means you could lose your domain name. Unless of course they are nice, but 50% of the time they are not (in my experience).

PLEASE, if you are building a new site or changing your URL, register the domain yourself, and make yourself the administrative contact as well as the registrant. This puts you in control of your domain name. There are many places to do this inexpensively and easily. GoDaddy is one of my favorites, despite the incessant attempts to sell me more. Once you register the domain you can give the login to the developer so the technical information can be changed to point to your site. But after the developer logs in, change your password. Keep it to yourself.

If you don't know if you are the registrant on your domain, you can look it up in the Internic WhoIs database.

If you have any questions about this, feel free to contact me. One of my pet peeves is developers who hold people's sites and domains hostage. I'd be happy to assist you, free of charge, in regaining control of what is rightfully yours.


VENKAT said...

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