Domain name hijacked danger
A hacking trend that is often hacked, which can be damaging to businesses, is domain name hijacking. In today’s online world, a company’s domain name may be one of its most valuable assets. Catchy domain names often cost millions of dollars and an ecommerce site could be the company’s main source of income or the only source of revenue. When a company loses control of the asset, the costs can be very expensive and difficult (if not impossible).
When a hacker grasps a domain name, a hacker can use the stolen domain name to cause serious damage to the company in the following ways:
- Destroying the website by defaming the content or materials;
- Use the site for other hacking activities such as phishing or spreading malware or spam;
- Transfer website revenue to hackers; and
- Turn off the company’s e-commerce business.
Domain name hijacking occurs when an unscrupulous person uses a vulnerability to steal a company’s domain name. Unauthorized access may involve vulnerabilities in the domain registrar system, password-cracking of administrative email associated with the account, social engineering, keyloggers, or disgruntled employees who have access to administrative e-mail. Once a hacker accesses a management email account and / or a registrar account through one of these means, he or she can control the domain name and lock the real owner.
Once the domain name is hijacked, the real owner can hardly recover access to the domain name. With sufficient documentation, the owner may be able to gain access from registrars, but this may not be valid if the domain name has been transferred to another registrar and / or other country (usually China), or the registrar refuses to help of. If the registrar can not or will not help, the company may seek to recover the stolen domain name through legal action, through ICANN’s Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy or theft-based litigation. These behaviors have a better chance of success when the stolen domain name includes the owner’s registered trademark or service mark.
Fortunately, businesses can take steps at the front end to help prevent such cybercrime. None of the steps may be 100% effective in preventing domain name hijacking, but they combine to improve the security posture of a company and greatly reduce the effort and expense required to recover a domain name. These steps include:
In the domain world, the “WHOIS” field in the domain registrar database is similar to the title of the domain name, so entering the information correctly is crucial. When registering a domain name with a registrar, be sure to follow these tips:
- Enter the correct and valid information in the WHOIS (Registrant), Management, Technical, and Billing Contacts fields.
- Entities listed as WHOIS domain name registrants are entities that have the legal right to assign a domain name and are individuals that are designated as administrative links with them to ensure that all of them are trustworthy employees.
- After the initial registration is completed, please continue to update all management, technical and billing contact information in your domain client account
- Restrict access to the administrative contact’s email address
Each employee who has access to and thus is able to send an email to a domain name registration authority through a management contact email address associated with your domain name will be able to transfer the domain name to another registrar or owner or to a domain name customer Make other changes to your account. Therefore, it is important to limit the access to management contact email addresses to trusted employees. Do not include your domain customer account login, password, username, username, credit card number, or shopper PIN information to anyone, including your webmaster.
Do not expire the management contact’s email address as this may result in an unauthorized third party registering the email address. This will provide access to your domain client account so that you can transfer the domain name or make other changes to your domain client account.
- Agreement with the staff
Your domain name registration and the entity that owns the domain name should sign a written agreement with all employees who have access to the management contact’s email address, where they acknowledge and agree that the domain name (i) is owned by only (ii) without the employer’s designation Senior staff may not be transferred or authorized to make any changes in the client accounts of the relevant domain without prior authorization.
- Monitoring and documentation
Periodically login to your domain client account to confirm that the registrant and the associated management, technology and billing contacts are properly listed, reflecting all changes that have been properly authorized, not to others.
Keep records of your account information to help show that you have the right to prioritize your domain name. Records may include registration records, billing records, web logs, registrars’ letters, and third-party catalog information.
- Lock your domain name
Lock your domain name from your domain client account. Your registrar may offer the option to purchase extra features to prevent your domain name from being transferred or changed to your domain customer account without proper authorization.
- Use secure email
Ensuring that you manage e-mail for domain name registration is important to prevent unauthorized registration changes. Consider the following precautions:
- Use a secure email address. For those looking for unauthorized access to your domain client accounts, free email accounts can be simple goals
- Create a password using a series of complex letters, numbers, and symbols to limit access to your management contact email address associated with your domain name.
- Use two-factor authentication when available.
- Anti-virus and anti-spyware software
To prevent keylogging software from capturing your account login name, user name, user name, and password and forwarding the information to unauthorized persons, install antivirus and antispyware software and update regularly.
- Register your domain name as a trademark
If, despite the best efforts, the domain name is stolen, you may need to seek legal recourse to recover the domain name if the other methods fail. However, if the stolen domain name contains a trademark or service mark registered under your company name (the United States Patent and Trademark Office), you may have more options to recover from it and prevent its unauthorized use, which could make this process Easier, faster, cheaper.