I had just registered a new domain name, and I did not think the extra money was worth it for domain privacy protection. Let’s just say hindsight is 20/20.
It was the 18th call I had received from an unknown number in three days. I lost it. These people calling me were like an insidious swarm of insects, preying on my ignorance. They came at all hours of the day and night. I may receive three calls at 7:30 a.m. on a weekday, but it was also entirely possible that I would receive a phone call from a rude and persistent stranger in the middle of Sunday dinner with my family.
When you purchase and register a domain name, it is required that personal information such as your name, address, phone number and email address are provided. The information is then searchable to the public via WHOIS. It’s actually quite terrifying if you think about it.
Thankfully, I only received the harassing phone calls from people trying to sell me their so-called “expert” services, but things could have ended much worse (I watch a lot of crime shows, ok?!).
This was all distinctly amusing, seeing as I am trained not only as a writer, but as a digital marketer as well. They were promising all sorts of big claims, like getting me onto the first page of Google search results in 2.3 minutes.
Amusement turned to annoyance, which turned to rage, which ended in me having a strongly-worded conversation with one of these salespeople. And finally, I purchased WHOIS domain privacy protection.
I urge you to not make the same mistake I did, but if you are considering opting out of this invaluable domain privacy service, here is why you should change your mind:
1) Your Personal Information is Compromised without Domain Privacy
Let’s say Sally Smith is registering for a personal domain. She wants to start a blog about cooking, and when registering the domain name, she inputs her personal address. Now anyone in the world (with a decent internet connection) can complete a simple internet search and know exactly where Sally lives.
I shouldn’t have to go much further into why this is a serious problem, but one episode of Forensic Files could probably convince you. Let our team help you keep your information private, folks.
In another tragic scenario, fraud is a possibility. It may not seem like a big issue for a person with fraud on their mind to have these basic details about you. However, basic personal information is essentially a gateway to obtaining more private and sensitive information.
2) Strangers Call You at All Hours
If I get a phone call from one of my friends, I’m concerned. These days, we use text messaging or social media to communicate. It was weird and obnoxious for my phone to be blowing up all day and night. Not to mention it is the worst thing ever to have someone trying to sell you something every second of the day. Especially when you know they’re full of you-know-what.
Those who are scanning the web for public domain details are not reputable companies. I make this assumption with great confidence. If you fall for one of these pitches, it’s almost a guarantee that you will be out of however much money you choose to give them, with very little to nothing in return to help your bottom line.
3) Hundreds of Email Notifications
I had to turn off email notifications on my iPhone. It was basically dancing across my desk every day, because I was receiving so many promotional offers from those who had obtained my email via WHOIS. Your inbox will be flooded with offers that you have no interest in whatsoever, and dare I say you could potentially become the target of a larger hacking operation.
A Cautionary (Very Public) Tale of Why You Need Domain Privacy Protection
In February of this year, former White House Press Secretary, Sean Spicer, had his private information floating around the internet for anyone to see. We’re talking his home address, personal phone number and Yahoo email account. That’s right, a White House official did not think that purchasing domain privacy protection was worth it (see, I’m not the only one!).
In the midst of today’s political climate, you can take a gander at why this posed a major problem for Spicer. Firstly, we were able to see the total of 16 websites registered under the same Yahoo email address.
When you Google the phone number on the account, it shows up in a Wikileaks DNC email dump in communication with Luis Miranda, Democratic National Committee communications director, asking for the next debate to be held “somewhere warm and fun.”
At the bottom of the email, Spicer’s email was listed.
This was just the beginning for Spicer. He went on to be trolled hard on Venmo, since anyone with his phone number or email address could contact him via the mobile payment service.
The internet never forgets. I’m sure he’s still regretting not paying for domain privacy protection. Don’t be like me or Sean Spicer–do it right the first time. Contact Hyperlinks Media to assist you in your domain privacy needs