Domain Name Registration Details (WHOIS)
Q Can you explain domain ownership?
The owner of a domain can be a company, individual or organisation and is referred to as the legal registrant of the domain.
When registering domain names, the name given as the registrant or owner (“Company Name” field) when you sign up will be displayed in the WHO IS record for the domain name. This entity will then be the legal owner of the domain name. If you wish to register as an individual, please ensure you enter your name in the “Company Name” field, information like “n/a” will be rejected by the registry.
If you’re a web designer, or reseller it’s important that you register domain names in the name of your customer to avoid any ownership disputes at a later date.
Once a domain is registered, it is still possible to change the ownership.
Information on a domain's ownership can be checked using our online WHO IS service.
Please note that the contact details for your account (that we use to contact you regarding renewals etc.) are stored and updated separately from the whois details stored for your existing domains. If you make any changes to one, the other will not be affected.
Q Can you explain WHOIS in more detail?
The WHO IS database is a global database of domain registration details. When you register a domain name, the name and your details are stored in the database to allow anyone to check the availability of the name. Most information on the WHO IS report is straightforward and easy to understand.
The key fields are:
This field shows to whom the domain is registered to – this is also known as the legal registrant or owner field.
The Admin contact is the person/entity entrusted with the ability to make significant changes to a domain name, such as transferring ownership of that domain name to a different party. The admin contact is often the same as the registrant contact but can also be another party, e.g. the registrant’s IT department.
The technical contact is usually the registrar of the domain – for new registrations with us, our default details are used. It can be set to the registrant’s details, or their agents if required.
Registrar of Record
The registrar of record denotes which registrar the domain is registered through.
The dates displayed on the WHO IS show the date the domain was first registered, the date that the domain will expire on and also the date that the domain was last updated. The last updated date will change when amendments are made to the domain, e.g. name servers are updated or the domain is renewed.
The nameservers that the domain resides on.
There are a few different statuses that a domain may have. When checking your domain you will generally see the two below, this status is registrar-lock, which means that the domain is protected from fraudulent transfer requests:
Status: clientUpdateProhibited http://www.icann.org/epp#clientUpdateProhibited
Other statuses to look out for are:
Status: redemptionPeriod http://www.icann.org/epp#redemptionPeriod
This means that the domain has entered Redemption and you will need to pay an additional fee before it can be renewed.
Status: clientHold http://www.icann.org/epp#clientHold
This can either mean that the domain has expired, or that it has been
suspended pending verification.
The information is generally the same as for gTLDs (generic Top Level Domains – i.e. .com, .biz), with the exception of a few additional fields.
The registrant type and trading as fields are general information on the registrant.
The Registrar field denotes which registrar or ISP the domain is registered with. The .uk extensions work differently from gTLDs as they each have an IPS tag assigned to them.
You will also notice that only the registrant name and address details are shown, the telephone and email details are not shown. The .uk extension only has an owner contact.
Other domains WHO IS reports may be laid out slightly different from these examples, but the fields are generally the same.
Q Verification process for the .uk extension
The new Nominet Data Validation process will affect all Nominet domains (.uk .co.uk .me.uk .org.uk .ltd.uk .plc.uk) for any new or existing registration and registrant data changes.
Nominet will try to validate the legal registrant name and address using their own data sources, if they cannot validate details they will ask the registrar to have the data validated, and so our below process will kick in. Please note that in most cases it is the legal registrant of the domain that needs to be validated, please ensure the document supplied is in the name of the legal registrant (owner) of the domain;
• An email will be triggered to the registrant asking them to follow the link to a verification page.
• On the verification page registrants have to upload a document to prove
that the name and address are correct, documents accepted;
o Companies House certificate
o Official company or trade register
o Valid driver's license
o Valid national ID card
o Utility bill (last 3 months)
o Bank statement (last 3 months)
o HMRC tax notification (last 3 months)
o Official letterhead
o Company stamp or seal
• Uploaded documents will be checked manually.
• If document is sufficient, the registrant data will be flagged as verified.
• If document is not sufficient the process will re-start; another verification email will be sent, the reason the document was rejected will be at the bottom of this email.
• If the details are incorrect the option will be there to update the data, once updated the process will start again; Nominet will do an automatic check and if still not correct another verification email will be sent.
• Data must be validated within 30 days.
• Domains that are not validated after 30 days will have what’s called a ‘Data Quality Lock’ applied and the domain suspended.
• Domains with the Data Quality Lock, suspended domains cannot be renewed or transferred.
Q Can I stop my personal details being displayed?
You can purchase the WHO IS privacy package for most domains through your control panel. Please note that this service isn’t available on all extensions, if you are in any doubt please contact our Sales team and they will be able to confirm whether this option is available to you.
If you have a .uk domain name that is registered to an individual and is non-trading, then you can hide your WHOIS details. Contact us directly for assistance with this service.
Q Can I opt out of showing my details with a .uk domain?
By default, the registrant name and address will be shown on the WHOIS for all domains.
Only domain name holders that are non-trading individuals can opt out of having their address details published on the WHOIS. In other words, if you do not use or plan to use your domain name for business, trade (this includes the registration of domain names for monetisation purposes, e.g. pay per click advertising etc.) or professional transactions, you will be entitled to opt out of having your address displayed.
If you fit into the criteria above then the registrant can opt out by Asking a Question through the support section of your control panel.