November 2, 2011
It can happen to the best of us and the biggest among us - but it doesn't mean you have to let it happen to you.
According to ZDNet's Josh Taylor, Australian business telecommunications giant AAPT somehow forgot to renew their domain name - albeit briefly.
A screenshot of the WHOIS record posted by Mr. Taylor shows the domain name expired at 6 minutes past midnight UTC yesterday, which was just after 11am Australian Eastern Daylight Savings Time. Mr. Taylor reports the AAPT site was functioning again by 2pm.
3 hours may not seem to be a long time for a site to be out of action, but for many businesses, it can translate to a loss of sales, particularly when the issue occurs during business hours. If you or the person responsible for that aspect of your business is unavailable, confusion can reign and resolution may take far longer.
As to why the AAPT domain reportedly wasn't renewed in time is unknown, but one of the most common reasons a registrant lets a renewal slide by is due to having out-of-date email contacts on their domain name record. The contact email address on the domain record is the address that renewal reminders go to, so if this address is incorrect, the reminder email won't be received.
Registrants might also "file away" the reminder for action at a later date - and then forget to take that action. Prevention being better than cure, the best way to ensure this doesn't happen to you is to renew your domain registration as soon as you receive a renewal reminder email. Depending on your registrar, renewing a domain name should be a very simple process, taking a couple of minutes at the most.
If you're not sure of your domain registration renewal anniversary, it certainly doesn't hurt to log in to your account to remind yourself - just to be sure. You should also check that your email contact details are up to date. Even if the renewal date is some time off, if you're concerned there's a chance you may somehow overlook it when it does fall due, you can always renew it in advance.
Go on, check your domain name record details now - you'll sleep better for it :).
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