Have you recently registered a domain and been flooded soon after with tens of annoying phone calls, texts and emails from people trying to sell you various products and services?
You’re not alone…
Lots of people have reported an increase in spam activity after registering a new domain. Scammers usually get in touch asking you to pay for SEO services, logo design, app design or even to renew your domain name.
Most often these spam emails don’t even look like a pitch that’s meant to entice you to buy a service, but more like a threat.
Here’s an example:
Unfortunately, these practices are very common considering the WHOIS database is like a spammer’s dream. They can easily find pretty much all the information they need to make contact with domain registrants. And their techniques are constantly evolving, with tools that allow them to not only harvest contact information but also lists of newly registered domains they can target next.
Fortunately, there are ways to keep your details private and prevent spammers trolling the WHOIS record database from contacting you.
How do spammers know you’ve just registered a domain?
This question keep popping up whenever people are complaining about receiving unsolicited emails and calls.
Why is it so easy for spammers to get access to their information, including the date they purchased the domain name?
Well, as you’re probably aware, when you register a domain at any registrar, your personal information, including your email address, is made public in the WHOIS database, as per ICANN rules. This information is in public domain and anyone can see it.
But the question is this: how is it possible for spammers to gain access to newly registered domains? How do they get to know the domain name so quickly, especially if one is particularly unique?
Simple. They harvest a database that carries the listing of newly registered domains and this database is open to the public.
If you go to Whoxy.com and scroll down, this is what you’ll find:
Et voilá! Lists with all registered domains that anyone can download and use. Try it with your own domain name and see what comes up.
What’s more terrifying is that this is likely just one of the many tools scammers use to get their daily list of newly registered domain names.
So how can you protect yourself?
First off, don’t click any links or respond to these emails. Better yet, report them. Phone calls may be more difficult to ignore or block if there are different callers with different phone numbers.
A sure way to stop spammers from contacting you is to use a service like the Heart Internet WHOIS Privacy service. What it does is it masks your email address, name, residential address, telephone number, etc. in the WHOIS database.
So when hackers, hijackers, and data miners go looking for your information, you’ll be safe as all they get to see will be a generic business address and phone number.
Now, while your information is hidden from the public eye, you still remain the legal registrant and owner of the domain name, with complete rights to sell, renew, cancel and transfer.
Adding domain privacy is affordable, and it’s well worth it if you want to avoid these annoying spam emails, texts and calls.
Also, if you own a .uk domain, you can enjoy our WHOIS privacy service at no cost to you. Simply activate it for free from the Domain Control Panel for your domain.