You have a domain and a website for your business that reflects your business identity and gives confidence to your existing and any potentially new customers. If you have not taken the correct steps to protect it, however, you may lose the domain and your website – and your business will potentially be ruined.

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What to do when registering a domain

When registering the domain, it is best to register it for the longest period possible or select automatic renewal. This means you will not lose your online identity or your linked email accounts. Also bear in mind that when registering your domain, you will need to fill in the name, address and contact details (phone, fax and email) of the registrant, the administrative contact and the technical contact. If you wish to be notified if there are any issues, it is best to have all these details filled in accurately. Ideally, when filling in the email contact field, you should select an alternative email address that is not linked to the domain; otherwise, it may not work if the domain has issues. You should also keep these details up to date when the domain is renewed. You can omit fax details.

Things to look out for when renewing your domain

Within a few weeks of your domain renewal, the registrant and perhaps the other contacts will receive multiple emails requesting that the domain name be renewed. You will need to look very carefully at these as most will be from unscrupulous registrants or scammers trying to steal your domain registration and then charging you fees. If in doubt, contact or your registrar immediately to resolve any concerns.

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Other things to remember

Many businesses have more than one domain, such as a “” as well as a “.com”. This can protect against someone else registering the same domain or business name and trying to steal business away from your company. This is why many companies register two or even more similar website names. These different website names will normally route to the same website and the same email accounts. Keeping the details of these domains up to date is also important.

Be vigilant

It is important to protect your domain by keeping its records up to date and always ensuring the domain is renewed in plenty of time.