• Your most important account

    A laptop on a desk with the image of a padlock on the screen.
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    Business owners, when it comes to your company’s online presence, one account is significantly more important than the rest.

    Let’s talk about your domain registrar (where you purchase and renew your domain names) and why it is the most crucial account you have.

    With access to this account, you can swap out any facet of your online business presence. You are free to mix and match services from different providers such as email hosting or web hosting, but they are all connected in your domain registrar account. 

    What happens if you no longer have access to this account? Maybe this responsibility was delegated to someone else and they are unavailable, or the login details were simply lost.

    The best case scenario is that you use password recovery to get back in, but if that isn’t an option (at the risk of sounding dramatic) you’re looking at a bureaucratic or legal process to recover access and it may not be successful.

    This means you need to keep your domain registrar account both secure and accessible. Make sure you’re using a quality password, and it’s not reused anywhere else. Make this account available to multiple users so that if the primary account holder leaves, you still have access. 

    It’s also important to ensure that the email address you have on record (or at least the secondary/backup email) with your registrar is not from a domain in that same registrar account. For example, if you use your [email protected] email address as the login for your example.com registrar account, that is setting you up for a potential problem. Let’s say your email provider is unreliable and you want to switch away but you don’t remember your registrar password. Using password recovery in this scenario will get you nowhere if your email is down and you cannot access the settings on the domain to switch it elsewhere.

    Lastly, renewing your domain in multiple year increments may seem simpler, but it comes with the downside of not needing to access the account for large stretches of time. So 5 or 10 years later, when it’s time to renew again, is the person with the login credentials still around?

    Now is a good time to review your current registrar situation, who has access, how you store that information, and when domains will be up for renewal.

    In a future post we’ll cover why your website/email hosting account should be separate from your registrar even if it seems like a good deal.