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How To Determine Who Owns A Domain Name
Naeem MobasharDecember 28, 2010 | Updated: December 9, 201573
The International Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers is the organization that authorizes registrars to issue or assign domain names to public. A registrant is the person or entity who is considered to be the domain name owner authorized to make or request for changes to be made in vital information related to domain name. It is, therefore, critically important to know the owner registrant of a domain name and also the person or entity having administrative, billing and technical rights related to domain.
Search Engines And Social Media
If current ownership information is not available through a WHOIS database or not directly shown on a site, it may be possible to track it down through other kinds of information, such as social media profiles or links to related sites. For example, a searcher might find the site owner through a Twitter account or LinkedIn profile, even if that information is not on the domain or in a WHOIS database. Even a Google search might turn up clues to a domain owners identity and contact information.
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Identify The Domain Name Registrant
Most websites have publicly viewable domain name registration information that can be used to contact the domain names owner. If this information is not available, you can search WHOis.net using their Whois lookup tool to find the necessary contact or registrant information.
Oftentimes, domain name owners hide their personal information or register the domain under another name to remain anonymous. Some domain name registrars offer a proxy service that provides anonymity when someone purchases a domain name service package.
When a domain is registered by an individual trying to maintain his or her anonymity, they will typically use a generic contact email address, like 1234respectmyprivacy@WHOISguard.com. This type of email address is usually a working email and can provide an extra layer of privacy for registrants by sending an automated, generic contact form to you after you email that address.
Your emails will still be forwarded to the real person who registered the domain name. This is similar to responding to a Craigslist ad and starting a back and forth email conversation. Both of you will receive the messages at your real email address. However, the other party will only see the anonymized email address.
Filing a Lawsuit to Identify the Domain Name Registrant
Issuing a subpoena to a domain registrar through the discovery process of litigation is one of the most reliable methods for identifying a domain name registrant in a civil case involving cybersquatting.
Who Can See My Information
Everyone can see your information. The name, address and phone number you submit when you register your domain is publicly accessible by anyone at any time. This is good if you are trying to sell your domain name, but bad news if your name and contact info is collected by a spammer, hacker or identity thief.
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Litigation May Be Appropriate When A Registrant Acts With An Ulterior Non
Some registrants can be greedy or have an ulterior, non-monetary purpose behind registering the domain name. These registrants are not generally receptive to legal demands and do not typically accept monetary offers to sell the domain, no matter how enticing the amount.
Many early cybersquatting cases involved internet squatters who simply purchased domain names of big companies and then offered to sell the name to those companies at an enormous profit. However, this often backfired and landed the squatter in hot water, resulting in sizable monetary penalties for some. Thanks to these early cases, this practice is now less common.
Attempts to purchase and then resell domain names for significant profits have significantly declined over the years, but domain name squatting does still occur now with different motives in mind.
Now, cybersquatting is more likely to be based on a personal grudge, where someone is trying to make another persons life more difficult. Cybersquatting can sometimes occur between ex-spouses during a divorce or custody dispute. Despite the non-monetary motivations behind cybersquatting, it is still possible to purchase the domain name from an individual acting with malice or ill-will.
How Many Domain Names Are There Domain Stats For 2022
Did you know that there are over 350 million domains registered around the world?
Thats more than 1 domain name for every 22 people on the planet!
With so many domains being registered, its no wonder the domain name industry is estimated to be worth around $6.7 billion in the US alone.
In this article, you will discover the types of domain names, the most popular domain extensions, as well as some of the most frequently asked questions about domain names.
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What To Do If Your Domain Name Expires
In case your domain name expires, you should contact the registrar that provided your domain name registration services for possible renewal options available to you. To determine your current registrar, conduct a WHOIS search by visiting whois.icann.org, as we already explained in the post.
Note: Keep all your important business information permanently recorded somewhere safe. That includes your registrar name, login username, password, and domain management somewhere with your most important business papers. Ensure that all your information is properly added when registering your domain name.
Choose Your Whois Lookup Tool
Theres a bunch of different WHOIS lookup options online to check who owns a domain.
These tools help you quickly search the WHOIS database. They provide such information as:
- Contact details of the domain owner
- The domain name registration.
The Interner Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers provides a simple summary of the WHOIS records. You see:
- The expiry date.
- The owner of the domain.
- The registration date.
- Where the domain points to.
It is available in a number of languages. It also provides useful information about registration policies and other topics.
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How To Check Who Owns A Domain Name
Every domain name name must be registered with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers . This organization is responsible for maintaining a global Internet and ensuring that domain names are owned by a single entity. They maintain the WHOIS database which contains the contact information for every domain. You can use the WHOIS database to obtain the name, address, telephone number of both the owner and the administrator of the site.
Contacting The Domain Owner
Since the European Unions General Data Protection Regulation came into force on 15th May 2018, the personal contact details of domain owners in the EU can no longer be published. You can only find out who owns a domain by contacting the domain provider, who then forwards the request to the domain owner. Reasons for contacting the domain owner may include general and technical inquiries, domain sale inquiries, as well as information in the event of possible misuse of the domain or domain name.
With .uk domains, Nominet will ordinarily not release your personal data without your consent. The exception to this is in the case of a legitimate request from, for instance, a law enforcement agency or a trademark holder wishing to enforce their intellectual property rights.
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Visit The Domain Name
Your first port of call when trying to find out who owns a domain name should be the domain name itself.
Type the domain name into your browser and see what happens. Youll either find a website, a holding page or an error message.
If theres a website, you can look through its various pages to try and find a domain name. Look for an About me/us page, a Contact me/us page, any other kind of contact form, or an email address. There may also be contact details in the websites footer.
A holding page may include some sort of contact information and will sometimes even explicitly state that the domain is for sale.
An error message may mean that there is a website on that URL, but it is currently unavailable, or that the domain name isnt being used.
Some error messages may include contact details, but if the one youre seeing doesnt youll need to try another method to find out who owns a domain name.
Whats The Difference Between Domain Extensions
Arguably, the most popular domain extension is .com, but other TLDs include .net, .org, .edu and .gov. There are literally hundreds more from which you can choose, and the less popular extensions are usually less expensive, with a few exceptions. The popularity of .io and .co has skyrocketed recently, so theyre pricier.
Some extensions are restricted and you cant purchase them unless you meet certain requirements. Restricted extensions include .edu and .gov. Overall, all extensions work the same. The .com extension is preferable because its easy to remember.
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What Are The Benefits Of An Ssl Certificate
SSL certificates provide security to your website and are vital to protecting your sensitive and personal information. SSL certificates keep your online interactions and transactions private through encryption and gives your customers confidence. The benefits include:
Check Your Billing Records
Checking your billing records is probably the easiest, and therefore, the first method you should use. Typically, your domain name registrar is who you bought your domain name from. If you dont remember who that registrar is, try searching your email archives for records regarding your domain name registration . The domain registrar should be listed on your invoice.
Its imperative that you keep your domain registrar up to date regarding changes to your email address and/or contact information. Registrars send renewal notifications to the email address they have listed.
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Contact The Domain Name Owner
If one of the steps above leads you to the website owner, its time to reach out! Craft an email letting them know that youre interested in purchasing the domain.
To avoid looking like spam, make sure your email conveys seriousness and professionalism. If you have a professional email address at a domain name you own, that will look more legitimate than one from a yahoo or aol account. If not, consider at least setting up a gmail address, which looks a bit more respectable.
Make sure your email includes:
- Your contact information both email and phone, so its easy for them to choose the method they prefer.
- Language that makes it clear youre willing to pay you may not want to include a specific offer yet , but theyre more likely to respond if they know this is a genuine business offer
- Something that shows your legitimacy how can you show youre a real person with serious intent? Maybe thats a link to a website you already run or a LinkedIn profile.
People get a lot of spam emails, so you want to clarify that youre a real person with real interest. If you can pull that off, the chances of getting a response are much higher.
Visit The Website Directly
If youve checked the domain status to find out your wanted domain name is not available, the first thing you should do is visit the website directly.
Some domain names are bought out to be resold later for a higher price. In such cases, the existing site will state the domains availability for sale and provide the owners contact information right away, like in the example below.
If you enter the domain name into the search bar and get taken to a proper website, see if there is a Contact Us page in the navigation bar or the sites footer.
There you will either find the contact details of the website owner or a contact form. Take the chance to reach out and offer to buy the domain name from the registrant.
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How To Secure Domain Privacy
If youve managed to secure a domain name, but havent registered it for domain privacy, your private information will be available to anyone who conducts a WHOIS database search. If youre not comfortable with having your information so readily accessible, but are set on domain ownership, Domain.com offers Domain Privacy registration for several TLD domain extensions.
If you register for Domain privacy, a WHOIS database search for your domain will report Domain.coms information instead of your personal information. In effect, Domain.com will mask all of the personal details that you dont want to be shared with the public. Registering for Domain Privacy does not mean that you sacrifice any control over your domainyou retain total ownership.
Unfortunately, not all TLDs qualify for Domain Extension privacy. Domain Privacy is only available to .com, .co, .net, .org, .tv, .info, and .mobi domain extensions.
Who Owns A Domain
If you are just starting out as a web developer, it is important to understand who owns a domain name. This is because a domain name is the easiest way to identify the owner of a website or blog. If you have worked on any kind of project in the past, you would have come across many times that certain services cannot be accessed if your domain name isnt correct.
Hundreds of thousands of domain names are registered. A majority of these domains remain unregistered and thus the identity of their owner is unknown. The cost to register a domain name varies, but can be in the range of $100-$500. There are different reasons why someone would want to own a domain name: it could be to prevent another party from using it, or they may simply have a unique idea that they wish to share with the world.
Many of us use a domain to find information on a particular topic. For example, you may type in your favorite television show, or some other website to find out more about it. If you own a domain, you can use it to provide information about your business or organization.
The Domain lookup tool is a useful application that helps you to find out who owns a particular domain. You can use this tool to get information about the owner of the domain and also to find out if they are selling it. Who owns the domain, where it is registered, and its history?
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Already Have A Domain
If youve already registered a domain name from a third-party provider, you can simply transfer it to Squarespace.
Search for your name, business, or brand name.
Check the availability of domain names on a wide range of domain extensions.
Select one or more domain names and domain extensions.
Register your selected domains with Squarespace so you can manage them in one place.
Check out and pay.
Option #: Visit A Web Hosting Provider To Use Whois
Go to a web hosting providers website and look for domains. HostGator®, Bluehost®, and GoDaddy are just a few examples of well-known web hosts. You should see a search box in the center of the screen where you enter domain names. It queries the WHOIS database to see if the name is available or already registered.
For domains that are already owned, scroll to the bottom of their website. Most domain hosting providers include a link to utilize the WHOIS database through their system. The provider presents the details for you on their website.
If A Domain Is Registered To Be Sold For Profit
Some people register domain names speculatively, and often go after domains that include the names of big companies, popular products, media enterprises, you name it. Or maybe youre just a big fan and want to set up a fan site that the big media company that owns the popular product, franchise, etc. will want to pay you money for .
Making money this way is possible, but youre just as likely to get a legal notice. And if they own the trademark, which they very likely might, they have a much stronger case and can demand you hand over the domain for zero dollars.
Sometimes though, what looks like domain squatting can actually be a case of someone having a domain long before a company or product is created and wants its corresponding domain. In these cases, the new company may offer to buy the domain off of you, or they may lodge a UDRP complaint , which basically claims that you own a domain you dont really have rights to and arent using the best way, and the other company has a trademark or business case that is better suited to the domains ownership and use.
Once upon a time domain squatting and speculation were more common and easier to get away with, but those days are long past. Registering what you think is a hot domain in hopes of a big payday is not the likely windfall some people still think it is. Youre more likely to be threatened with legal action.