Does the reorder of a domain actually work?

6 tips to secure your domain name from domain thieves

Domain thieves? Yes, a smart sub-category of domain buyers and resellers that we call domainers.

Buying an expired or expiring domain name (also known as: drop catching) is not an illegal activity in itself: you are buying domains that no one claims anymore, and if you want to use them legitimately (for personal or commercial purposes), you are one good domainer, not a thief.

Of course, being a good domainer means that you need to make sure that the domain names you buy are not trademarks, i.e. are not registered trademarks. Otherwise you could be held liable for cybersquatting. Then there are domainers who shop for resale purposes and this is another legitimate activity.

Unfortunately, not all domainers are good marketers. Some are, frankly, quite obsessed; Once they discover a particular domain - which they find attractive for their name, PageRank, link popularity, Alexa, or MozRank - they will use every known measure to acquire it, even to the extent that they try that Domain defraud registrants in good faith or try to invade their privacy.

Obviously, the above is NOT a legitimate activity. Registering an unclaimed domain is one thing, but forcing a registrant to give up their domain name is unacceptable. And rude. I've seen this type of abuse and if you have, you know exactly how dangerous it can be for your business.

The guide below has been written with your situation in mind, while all 6 tips have been personally tested as a counter-strategy to protecting my own domain names.

How to secure your domain name

1. Never let your domain expire

Renew your domain names at least two months before the expiration date and for a period of at least two years. Don't let it expire as domainers could use a domain purchase option - Domain Backorder - which allows them to pre-order your domain until it expires and becomes available for registration.

Pay attention to the REGISTRAR-HOLD status of your domain: If this is set to REDEMPTIONPERIOD or PENDINGDELETE, hurry up and renew it. In addition to these two, there are other status codes that are listed in the standardized Domain Status Code Here you will find explanations about the status of your domain name.

Is domain backorder a legal purchase option?

Reorders are generally considered legitimate, albeit risky for the buyer. In fact, a backorder is nothing more than the hope of one day getting a domain name, but the current registrant can renew the domain at any time before it is deleted, outperforming the backorder's purchase. Domain reorders are expensive compared to standard domain prices, so this is never the first option to consider when purchasing a domain name. Here are some of the most popular domain reorder sites:

2. Activate domain locking

As soon as you register a new domain name, your registrar will automatically apply a domain lock. A domain lock is a security option that denies unauthorized transfers of your domain name to other registrars. However, you may want to temporarily turn it off to allow a broadcast or enable other options. Either way, be aware of the vital role this option plays and remember to re-enable it when you're done, as this is a secure system that prohibits clever domain users from stealing your domain.

3. Enable the whois protection

Registrars like Hover.com and NameCheap.com offer this option free of charge for the first year of registration. Whois protection allows you to completely hide all domain-related information, including your general information, your email address, your telephone contact and your home address.

All protected WHOIS queries return general information about the registrar and nothing else. To check your WHOIS information, you can use services like WHSR-Tool or who.is, or if you are using a UNIX-based operating system, just enter your terminal:

Domain registrar and whois protection

Below is a list of domain registrars that provide WHOIS privacy protection and their pricing:

4. Your domain is NOT for sale

Make this clear with a homepage banner or a disclaimer stating that any offer to buy your domain will be automatically ignored. If your registrar allows an 'Organization Name' or additional 'Street Address' fields, use one that says 'DOMAIN NOT FOR SALE'. This strategy reduces the likelihood that a domainer will email you to request a quote.

5. Ignore or report offensive messages

Try to ignore the persistent request emails from the domains. In the (rare) event that they offend or threaten you, report them to your email provider and registrar or the domain provider's ISP, if available. Defamation and threats are crimes and can be prosecuted by law.

6. Don't give in to requests

Sly domainers are subtle: they try to manipulate you to improve your sense of security and trust so that they can acquire your domain without your consent.

Don't give in! You own your domain name for a reason. You have worked hard to increase its reputation and worth in the eyes of search engines. Don't let "lazy" domains take advantage of the fruits of your labor. Avoid falling into the trap of a possessed domainer unless you are interested in selling your domain.

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About Luana Spinetti

Luana Spinetti is a freelance writer and artist who lives in Italy and is a passionate computer science student. She graduated from high school in psychology and education and completed a 3 year course in comic book art, which she graduated from in 2008. As a multi-faceted person, she developed a great interest in SEO / SEM and web marketing with a special inclination towards social media. She is working on three novels in her mother tongue (Italian), which she hopes to publish soon.

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