Increase Visits & Conversions GET A FREE WEBSITE REVIEW


Safeguarding Your Domain Name and Website: A Comprehensive Guide

Date: 11/05/2023

Stuart Watkins

Domain name and website security are paramount in today’s digital age.

We’ve lost count of how many times we’ve taken on a project, and the client doesn’t know who has access to either the domain, hosting or access to social media or cloud services.

With increasing cyber threats, taking proactive measures to secure your online presence is essential. Our domain and website security guide is here to help.

The Importance of Securing Your Domain Name

Securing your domain name isn’t just about protecting your brand; it’s about safeguarding your business. A secure domain name is less likely to be targeted by cybercriminals, providing a safer online environment for your users.

domain name and website security

Protecting Your Domain Name: Seven Essential Steps

1. Choose a Reputable Registrar

When registering your domain name, selecting a reliable registrar is crucial. Renowned registrars have robust security measures, including two-factor authentication (2FA), domain name lock, and regular security updates. We’re big fans of Cloudflare for domain registration and the added benefits it brings in shielding your server’s IP address.

2. Ensure login details are logged safe and securely

Login details are mission-critical, and more than one person should know them. Yes, you don’t want everyone to have access, but make sure that if the person who had access leaves or is off sick you can still access them.

3. Implement Two-Factor Authentication

Two-factor authentication adds an extra layer of security to your domain. With 2FA, an additional step is included in the login process, often requiring the user to verify their identity through a second device.

4. Keep things private

Set up privacy controls to mask your address and name details. This can prevent social engineering attempts to take your domain.

5. Use a Secure Email Address for Registrant Contact

Using a secure email address for your domain registrant contact reduces the risk of domain hijacking. A secure email platform has robust security measures, including encryption and spam filters. The email should be under another domain if you lose access to the first domain.

6. Regularly Update Your Domain Information

Regular updates of your domain information ensure that all details are current. Regularly check and update your domain’s registrant, administrative, technical, and billing contacts. We suggest there be more than one person to keep things mission-critical.

The registrant should be (or represent) the domain owner, administrative ideally should be a manager at the company, technical might be your developer or IT, and billing can point at accounts or someone who will pay the bills.

7. Set Auto-Renewal for Your Domain Name

Setting your domain name to auto-renew prevents any accidental expiration. With auto-renewal, your domain name will be automatically renewed before its expiration date, ensuring continuous ownership. Most domains will allow you to renew for at least two years or more.

Bolstering Your Website Security: Effective Strategies

1. Keep Your Website Platform and Software Updated

Regularly updating your website platform and software is a key step in maintaining your website’s security. Updates often include patches for known vulnerabilities, reducing the risk of a cyber attack.

For WordPress, we recommend an audit and update once a month, preceded by tests on a staging server, backups and a rollback plan in place.

2. Use Strong, Unique Passwords

Implementing strong, unique passwords for your website is an effective way to prevent unauthorized access. A strong password contains a combination of letters, numbers, and special characters and is not easily guessable.

3. Install an SSL Certificate

Installing an SSL certificate on your website encrypts the data transferred between your server and your users. This encryption prevents data theft and assures your users that your website is secure. Lets Encrypt offer a free certificate, or you can utilise Cloudflare.

4. Regularly Backup Your Website

Regular website backups allow for a quick recovery in case of a cyber attack. Regular backups can restore your website to its previous state, minimizing downtime and data loss. A decent hosting package will offer daily sequential backups, helping you roll back easily.

5. Implement a Web Application Firewall (WAF)

A Web Application Firewall (WAF) provides real-time protection for your website. It filters and monitors HTTP traffic, blocking malicious requests and protecting your website from common web-based threats. Read more about Cloudflare’s WAF here.

Don’t forget to secure your cloud services and social channels

We use various cloud services and social media critical to our business operations. Multiple stakeholders will often use these, and each access point represents a security risk.

Cybersecurity Training

Educate your staff on potential issues and have a security policy in place.

Only provide access at the required level; most software offers multiple access levels. Only provide super admin access when it’s necessary.  Users should only be given the access they need to do their job.

Password management

Use a centralised password management system such as 1Password, Bitwarden or Nordpass. With the sheer number of passwords we need to manage, it is impossible for a business to keep track of its entire software estate without these tools.

Have a password policy and database of who has access. When staff leave, ensure their access to all systems is methodically removed.

Get Cyber Essentials accreditation.

This is a government-run initiative to help you protect your organisation, whatever its size, against a range of the most common cyber attacks.

Download our free domain and website security checklist to help you and your team manage your own security.

Frequently asked questions

I’m not sure who my domain registrar is? How can I find out?

First step would be to use a whois service. You can find these on the web or even run from a command line (>whois

The output of whois will tell you what the name servers are this will provide a good clue to who the registra is. If the name server point to cloudflare the name servers might be hidden. This is is great for security but not good for your own research.

Whois can also tell you who the regstra and otehr contacts are but increasingly people are chosing (quite rightly) to keep this infomration private.

Trying to contact past developers. ITs and whoever manages the name servers you can see from whois are your final steps.

How can I find out who my web host is?

From the command line you can ping the domain to see what IP adderess returns:

% ping
PING ( 56 data bytes

You can then use the lookup on to find out who owns that IP address.

Again, if secure services like Cloudflare are used the real servers IP address will be hidden.

My web developers moved to Bali what can I do?

Seriously, we’re often contacted by companies that can’t locate a freelancer who worked on a project. If you are using a single point of contact to work on sites beware that these single points can break and following the suggestions in thsi article and the checklist will help prevent issues.

If you are stuck, please reach out and we’ll do our best to help or point you in the right direction.

Share this Article share

Tell us about
your project

Send us a brief message outlining
your project and we’ll get back to
you asap to discuss your project
in more detail.