You might not have realised it, but there’s an easy way for someone to find out all your information. If you’ve bought a domain, your information may be available to anyone and everyone.
WHOIS is a query that tells someone the details of who owns a domain name. If you’ve got a .com, .net or .org, then we use whois.net to look up details. If you’re a .co.uk, then you’ll need to use Nominet who look after the domain database for the UK. (If your domain doesn’t use any of these TLD’s (top level domain – the end bit like .com and .co.uk), then you may need to Google for your own WHOIS provider.)
If you’re worried about having your information out there, then you can usually opt out or use domain privacy protection. A good domain provider will offer a privacy feature as a optional freebie – the two places I have personally used to buy domains from, Dreamhost♦ and 34sp both offer this for free. (Dreamhost has their own proxy information they use while .co.uk users can opt out according to Nominet). There are many reasons to avoid using GoDaddy, but in this situation, avoid them because they want to charge you to hide your details!
If your blog ends in .blogspot.com or .wordpress.com, then you don’t need to worry, but if you buy your domain directly through these services, then you should still check whether this is included. If you need to find a place to buy a domain, then there’s a post about that here with links suggested by others.
Perhaps it’s being overcautious, but it’s better to make it a little more difficult for people to find out where you live, right?
If you have a website, this is really important. Your home address is just readily available to anyone… http://t.co/z7KT6H54qI
Very informative post! I recently bought my own domain, and wasn’t quite sure if I should pay the additional £5 to protect my information, but as you said, even if it’s being overcautious, it’s one less thing to worry about. And I am glad I forked out the extra couple of pounds for my domain name!
Loving you blog, keep up the good work! =)
Laura @ Kneadwhine says
Thanks for this – I had no idea this was something that existed. Unfortunately my domain provider also charges (123reg). How annoying!
Bloggers, did you know about this from @BonjourBlogger : – http://t.co/LpOPpbkVGV ? I’ve now removed my name and address from the registry..
Namecheap also charges to hide your details. Surely this type of thing should be available for free.