Backland Communications - Domain FAQ Backland Communications Premier Business Internet Web Hosting Email Hosting Domain Registration High Speed DSL Internet Sat, 21 Jul 2018 00:17:46 +0000 Joomla! 1.5 - Open Source Content Management en-gb Be master of your domains to avoid problems In an infamous episode of the American sitcom Seinfeld, comedian Jerry Seinfeld asked the question, “Are you master of your domain?” Of course, he wasn’t quite talking about domain names, but the question is a good one, none the less.

When it comes to domain names, it’s important to treat them as valuable assets and nothing less. While maintaining a presence online isn’t expensive ($25 per year for the domain name, plus about a few dollars a month in hosting costs), websites are often in reality important tools worth far more than those limited costs might indicate.

Every now and then I get a call from someone who has “lost control” of their domain name. The story usually goes something like this: the person on the phone didn’t know much about the Internet but needed to get either a basic website online, or needed to have an email account with a personal customized email address for their business. The person asked an Internet-savvy friend to register the domain name and get hosting arranged. To save time and to avoid any hassles, that well-meaning Internet-savvy person simply registered the domain name (sometimes in their own name) and got the site up and running. No worries, right?

To quote Seinfeld again, “Serenity now! Insanity later.”

What generally happens is this: a year passes by and the domain name expires. At this point, the person who thinks they own the domain name calls to find out why their site is offline. They haven’t received any renewal notices because the administrative email address is either incorrect, or they don’t have access to it.

Getting the site back online then turns into something of a complicated task. In many cases the “owner” of the domain has no idea where the domain was registered, let alone the username and password required to change the administrative contact information.

Of course all of this could be avoided had the person treated the domain name as something of value and ensured that they understood the process and maintained control. Here’s some tips to ensure that domain buyers are well served and will be “masters of their domains.”

  • For domain buyers: If you are registering a domain name, do some research to make sure you understand the process, what you are getting for your money and what your responsibilities are.
  • For tech-savvy friends: If you are registering a domain name for someone else, don’t. Instead, take the time to explain why it’s a bad idea. By all means, walk the person through the process, but make sure you explain that they have certain responsibilities to ensure the domain remains theirs. Make sure to register the domain in the name of the owner, and make sure relevant information like URLs for control panels and the all important username and password are given to the domain owner for safekeeping.  Explain the importance of guarding usernames and passwords, and most importantly, of keeping Whois information and that all important administrative email address up to date.
Domain FAQ Sun, 06 Dec 2009 09:21:21 +0000
Beware of Fake Domain Name Renewal Notices thousands of examples.

The usual tactic, known as domain slamming, is fairly basic – unethical companies mine WHOIS records for Registrant information and domain expiry dates. Then, months in advance, they contact the Registrant either by mail or email with a very official looking and sounding document or message that tells them to protect their valuable name by renewing early. A Google Images search brings up a couple of scanned examples.

Of course, when the Registrant sends the cheque or pays by credit card, thinking they are doing the right thing, what actually happens is that a Registrar transfer is initiated. The Registrant will then blindly go through the steps to complete the transfer, again thinking they are doing the right thing to protect their valuable domain name.

Combatting this is really fairly simple, a few recommendations for registrants:

  1. WHOIS Privacy. This is the absolute best protection. It stops the practice dead in its tracks as there is no way for to contact the Registrant directly. Take advantage of WHOIS Privacy and the protection it offers. Backland Communications includes WHOIS Privacy for free as part of our domain registration.
  2. Domain locking. A locked domain can’t be transferred, again, preventing the domain slam. The transfer attempt may generate a support call by the Registrant to remove the lock, in which case you have the perfect opportunity to make sure the transfer is legitimate.


Domain FAQ Sat, 05 Dec 2009 20:34:24 +0000
Can I transfer domains already registered with another registrar (i.e. Network Solutions) to Backland Communications?
Please note that if a com/net/org domain does expire and you have to renew with the old registrar, you should not transfer until 45 days past the anniversary date. If you do, the year paid to the old registry will be lost and they do not give refunds.

The Admin Contact Email address for the domain must be valid. Contact the current registrar to make this change if necessary.

Currently, the automated system doesn't support transfers for some ccTLD domains.

 Presently, the transfer process works like so:

You can place a transfer using our domain registration management web interface using "Transfer a Domain".

Once the transfer order is submitted to us, an Email will be sent to the Admin Contact Email address of the domain to be transferred.

Before you attempt to transfer a domain, make sure that the Admin Contact Email for the domain to be transferred is valid. If the Admin Contact Email address listed in the current whois info is no longer valid, you must contact the original registrar to request it be changed. We can't assist you in transferring the domain until we can verify who is accepting the transfer.

The confirmation Email contains detailed instructions for the Admin contact. This includes a unique URL which displays an option to either accept or decline the transfer.

Note that all transfers are sanity-checked to prevent high-profile domains like "" from being transferred fraudulently.

Registrar transfers are sent to the Registry where it awaits approval. Unless the losing Registrar explicitly denies the transfer (for instance, if the domain is past it's expiry date), it will usually go through this step within 9 days. It can go through sooner if the losing registrar explicitly approves the transfer. This will vary from registrar to registrar.

Please note that some Registrars have added confirmations of their own for transfers away from their system. Please contact them directly for details.

The transfer itself of the domain costs one year's registration fee. This year is added on top of whatever time is remaining on the domain.

If the transfer is denied by the current Registrar, OpenSRS or by the domain owner themselves, you will receive a refund on your prepaid fee to us.

Please note that when you process a transfer, it will not show up in our domain management interface until the transfer has completed successfully. It usually takes 3-5 days but may take as long as 10 days.]]>
Domain FAQ Sun, 06 Dec 2009 10:03:25 +0000
How can I transfer an Expired Domain?
You can transfer an expired Tucows OpenSRS domain.

Transfer to us from another Tucows OpenSRS Reseller
You can transfer your domain to us from another Tucows OpenSRS Reseller, which can generally be accomplished in under 30 minutes.  Even if their website states that expired domains cannot be transferred, they will be able to transfer your domain because they are within the same Registrar system (Tucows OpenSRS) as us.

Domain FAQ Sun, 06 Dec 2009 09:41:44 +0000
How do I change ownership of my domain name? (ie. I want to sell it or give it to someone else) To change the contact information:

In the Manage Domain interface, click on Organization link and update the information

To change the domain's profile:

Log into the Manage Domain interface

Click on "Manage Profile" and then select "Change Ownership of Domain".  Fill out the username/password of the profile you want to add this domain to, or create a new profile and provide a username and password. If you are moving the domain to an existing profile, click on "Move to existing profile" and type the name of a domain that is already in the profile into the "Previously registered domain" field.  Click on "Change Owner" and the domain will be in the new profile.

* It is important to remember that anyone with the profile login can change all information for all domains in the profile, including the ownership.]]>
Domain FAQ Wed, 09 Dec 2009 13:02:32 +0000
How much control do domain owners have over their domain once they've signed up through an OpenSRS Registration Service Provider?
  1. Change admin/technical and billing contacts for the domain.
  2. Change ownership of the domain.
  3. Change the nameservers that are authoritative for the domain.
  4. Create sub-users and enable them to change some/all of the options in 1, 2, or 3 above.
  5. Change the password that enables 1, 2, 3, or 4 above.
As an end-user, it is unlikely you will care to bother with such details. If this is the case, we offer these services as a 'value-add' to the registration service.
Domain FAQ Wed, 09 Dec 2009 23:14:08 +0000
How to Protect Yourself from Domain Hijacking How to Protect Yourself from Domain Hijacking

There was a well-publicized case of domain-hijacking that gained some worldwide media attention when David Airey had his domain,, stolen. The story was a familiar one – a domain thief gained access to a domain holder’s email account (in this case, a Google GMail account) and then used that account to gain control of the domain name and transfer it to himself.

This story had a happy ending and the domain was returned to its rightful owner thanks to, in this case, Go Daddy, which was the receiving Registrar in the fraudulent transfer.

At Backland Communications we’re actively engaged in the battle against online fraud including domain name theft, phishing, and spam. When domain name thefts are reported to us, our Compliance Team acts accordingly to assist with retrieval of domains where possible.

There are a couple of tips to avoiding domain name theft he suggested all domain owners and resellers learn:

1. Use WHOIS Privacy. It can protect you to a certain extent from this kind of theft. If the administrative email address that is listed with the domain name under WHOIS is exposed, then a potential domain thief has two pieces of information he needs – the domain name, and the email address used to manage it. The thief can then gain control of the email address, and then use that email address to gain control of the domain by having passwords emailed to himself. WHOIS Privacy offers some protection because it prevents the domain thief from finding out what the administrative email address is for the domain name.

2. If you can avoid it, don’t use free, web-based email addresses for your administrative contact. In this case, a security flaw in GMail allowed the hacker to gain control of the email account of the domain holder. Likewise, having your entire domain portfolio under a single administrative email account is another mistake. Never mind having one domain name stolen, if a thief gains control of your email account, he could steal your entire portfolio of names.

3. Your domain name is worth more to you than you might think. It may only cost you $25 a year to register the domain, but take a moment to imagine what the cost would be if you had to change domain names tomorrow. It could be as easy as reprinting business cards, or as difficult as re-branding your entire company.

4. Chose your Registrar wisely. Look for a Registrar with a solid Compliance team and a good record within the industry. They’ll have policy and procedures in place to protect you against domain name theft, and in the event your domain is taken from you fraudulently, you stand a better chance of getting it back with a solid registrar.

If you do one thing today, make it this: activate WHOIS privacy on your domains. At Backland Communications, we recognize the value of WHOIS Privacy, and we include it free with every domain name sold.

Domain FAQ Sat, 05 Dec 2009 09:58:45 +0000
I forgot my login name and password. domain management interface, when the login fails you will have an option to email the password to a domain contact on record.
Domain FAQ Wed, 09 Dec 2009 23:07:48 +0000
My domain is offline, but WHOIS says it expires next year. Why?
In general, when most types of domains (like COM, NET and ORG) expire the domain is temporarily renewed. This is temporary. This temporary renewal will be removed if the domain is not renewed or transferred, which will result in the domain going into a status known as the "REDEMPTIONPERIOD" or "Pending Delete-Restorable". It may also be deleted outright, depending on the type of domain.

With some types of domains, you can confirm that the domain is expired by taking note of the expiration month and day. If you have passed this date, and the domain is offline, it has expired.

Please note that it may take 24 hours for some types of domains to come online once they have been renewed, and WHOIS will unfortunately not indicate if it was renewed.]]>
Domain FAQ Sun, 06 Dec 2009 09:43:41 +0000
Once an expired domain has been renewed, how long does it take for the services to begin working again? ]]> Domain FAQ Sun, 06 Dec 2009 09:50:32 +0000