Domain abandonment and the risks involved
Website domain names are the main addresses used to establish and distinguish businesses on the World Wide Web. Selecting the perfect domain name for your business can be a lengthy and intricate process. Once the domain name is officially yours, it only belongs to you until your ‘lease’ expires. If it doesn’t get renewed, the chosen domain name will end up back on a domain registry database. Laying bare, it can be purchased by the highest bidder and end up in the hands of a completely new user.
For IT professionals, the renewal of active domains is a routine admin task. Most vendors enable you to set up auto-renew arrangements so there no action is required from you. All major registries generally send plenty of prompts and a generous grace period to re-register.
What could possibly happen if you do not make it in time to renew your domain name? A cybercriminal can easily find your abandoned business domain and take charge of it. With your domain name alone, cybercriminals are able to change the mail exchanger records of the domain to set up catch-all email services. From this, they are then able to receive all email correspondence sent to the addresses linked to the domain. This breach of email activity includes sensitive information relating to the business associated with the domain name, its clients, communications to staff and valuable financial information.
The solution is simple – continue to renew active and redundant domain names on a regular basis. Make this an integral part of your company protocols. They can be renewed indefinitely and it costs next to nothing to do so. Data is a valuable asset for the operation of a business and should, where possible, be protected at all costs.