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Whenever I get any domain name news that can potentially affect ALL domain name owners, I'll be sure to post it.
Some of you may or may not know by now, but the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the governing body charged with overseeing the Domain Name System, has formulated new domain name transfer policies that will take effect on November 12, 2004:
So what does this mean?
First, the good news: it makes domain name transfers simple and painless because you actually don't even HAVE to confirm it anymore!
All you have to do is go to the new registrar/reseller of your choice, follow their instructions on how to create an account with them (be it online for via fax), pay up, then the new registrar/reseller will notify your current one of the impending transfer.
Ideally, the new one will send an authorization email to the email address of the administrative contact based on the domain name's WHOIS record. Whoever has access to that email must either confirm or deny the request.
But here's the change: whether you receive it or not, the default result is that the registrar or reseller MUST release the domain name from their systems & transfer it to the new one.
Standard exceptions still apply, though:
1. Domain must still be paid. Better you do this at least 30 days before expiration. 2. Domain must not be "locked". 3. Domain must not be in any sort of dispute.
Assuming at least those 3 exceptions don't apply to your domain name, your transfer will push thru without a hitch. Barring any technical hiccups, of course. :)
Now, the bad news: just as it will become easier to move your domain name to your new registrar, it becomes easier for one total unknown stranger to do this without your consent.
So what must you do to prevent this from happening?
1. Contact your registrar or reseller and ask if they have a sort of locking feature that prevents domain transfers from taking place. Most if not all registrars provide this.
If they do, you must log inside your account and activate it yourself. A friend of mine, though, notified me she recently got an email from her domain registrar that they will turn on their locks for all domains on a certain date, so be sure to read any email from your current registrar or reseller regarding this.
2. If your domain name doesn't have this lock, check your domain name's WHOIS contact information (or internal info) & ensure the email address w/in is correct & only you has access to it. This is to ensure you receive the email and follow its instructions on how to deny the transfer.
3. Since ISPs sometimes block legitimate emails from reaching their recipients, be sure to "whitelist" them. If necessary, please contact your registrar or reseller and ask what is their specific email address that'll be sent to you requesting confirmation or denial of the transfer.
I'll keep you all posted as the date when the transfer policies takes effect looms near. Meanwhile, please be sure to inform as many people as you can about this to prepare for it.
Take care of your domain name/s!
[edited by: Brett_Tabke at 8:45 pm (utc) on Sep. 13, 2004]
[edit reason] fixed formating [/edit]
If you do not use an accredited registrar, or use a "dodgy" registrar, or use a registrar who doesn't know what the heck they are doing, or who has a broken email system, or, in general: If you ELECT to use a crappy no-name registrar because they're offering $2.95 registrations, then you're in the "back alley", and who knows what kind of security precautions or regulations are being followed. Bad idea, even if it is cheap.
If you stay on the sunny side of the street, and use accredited, well-known, slightly more expensive registrars (Register.com offered regs at $17.50/year), then you know who you are dealing with, and you'll be fine.
You get what you pay for. Caveat emptor. etc.etc. Just pay for a decent service, for crying out loud! :)
STANDARDIZED FORM OF AUTHORIZATION
DOMAIN NAME TRANSFER - Confirmation of Registrar Transfer Request
An English version of this message is contained below.
<Insert translation of English version in preferred language of the registrant if known>
DOMAIN NAME TRANSFER
Attention: <insert Registered Name Holder or Administrative Contact of Record as listed in the WHOIS>
Re: Transfer of <insert domain name or list of domain names>
<insert name of registrar and/or name of reseller> received notification on <insert date of notification> that you have requested a transfer to another domain name registrar. If you want to proceed with this transfer, you do not need to respond to this message. If you wish to cancel the transfer, please contact us before <insert date> by:
[NOTE: a registrar may choose to include one or more of the following in the message sent to the Registered Name Holder or Admin contact, and additional processes may be added with ICANN approval. The order in which options are presented is a decision for each registrar]
[optional] send an email to <insert contact details>
[optional] send a fax to <insert contact details>
[optional] or please go to our website <insert URL of confirmation webpage>
[Note: website to contain text as above, with the option the transfer.]
If we do not hear from you by <insert date>, the transfer will proceed.
One thing I've learned in life is that the more expensive product is not necessarily the better one. The assumption that if you pay more for your registration you are automatically better protected is, I believe, false. Personally, I don't have any cheap registrations
I do agree with the Caveat emptor bit. IMHO, Emptors have to exercise even more Caveat under these new regulations ;). We'll have to agree to differ on that.
I cannot think of a single reason why "more expensive " means "better" ...for anything .....especially if the basic product is merely being "resold" to you ...
Although it is not my main business ..I do have one in which online I sell items which are at 20% of store retail ..they come from the same factory as "store retail "'s products ..they are in fact the identical product ..I guarrantee them just as "store retail" do ...
Store retail claims to be selling them at "cost"!
I make 300% gross on each one I sell!
Those of you who consider that the "more you pay" always equates to "better product or service" are the end result of the advertising business ..which I quit many years ago ..apparently it still works as well as ever ...;)
...message sent to the Registered Name Holder or Admin contact
...message sent to the Registered Name Holder or Admin contactIn many cases the Registrant is the business owner or secretary or something, they do not know anything about how domains work (nor should they). If an email or signed letter from the Registrant to an agressive registrar means that registrar can transfer ie cutting out the Admin contact approval - domains are going to be lost!
Extract of a transfer request from OpenSRS - sent to me on 18/11/04
If you WISH TO PROCEED with the transfer, you must respond to this message as outlined below (note: if you do not respond by Tue Nov 23 06:39:01 2004, myname.com will not be transferred to us.).
Please go to our website, [xyz.opensrs.net...] to confirm.
You will need to enter the following information to complete the transfer:
Domain Name : myname.com
Transfer Key: #*$!yyyzzz
My post was purely about the cheap cheap registrars where it's a good idea to read t+c's before you buy. For instance there are companies in the UK who will give you uk domains for free or very cheap (£1), but if you want them released you have to pay nearly £20. This is a lot considering I pay just under £6 for 2 years reg.
I wasn't saying the cheap registrars are obviously dodgy, sorry if it came across like that.
is it cumpolsary for the Gaining Registrar to email the contact info (or fax) and ask for an authorization?
For those gaining registrars who do it via email, yes. If fax, the fax supposedly covers it.
In many cases the Registrant is the business owner or secretary or something, they do not know anything about how domains work (nor should they). If an email or signed letter from the Registrant to an agressive registrar means that registrar can transfer ie cutting out the Admin contact approval - domains are going to be lost!
All the more reason to start learning about domain names. Now's as good time as any.
If they won't take the time to do so, then they're not responsible enough to take care of
their domain names.