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Some of you might have noticed a Domain status: REGISTRAR-LOCK on domains you have registered through tummy.com. What does that mean? Is it good?

REGISTRAR-LOCK is a new status a domain can have. You can look at your domains information via the 'whois' command line tool or one of the many whois web interfaces available on the net. The status is usually listed at the bottom of the entry, although the information looks different for various different registrars.

REGISTRAR-LOCK means that your domain has been locked by your registrar (in the case that you registered the domain via tummy.com, that would be us). The domain cannot be transfered or modified until it's unlocked. Requests to transfer the domain or change it will be rejected.

So on first glance you might think that is rude of us to be locking your domain so you can't change it. However, it ends up being a very useful and nice feature. Here's why:

  • Most domains don't need changes very often. I haven't changed my personal domain's information in years
  • We are happy to unlock a domain for you to make changes and then relock it when you have submitted your changes
  • A big reason: Other people out there can't transfer your domain to their less than reputable registrar
  • Another big reason: Other people can't transfer your domain to themselves and hijack it for their own purposes

In order to make changes in a domain all you have to do is submit your changes from the admin contact for the domain. There is very little verification involved, so people can change your information or switch your registrar without you knowing.

I just had a friend mail me that they had gotten several emails saying that a new domain registrar had tried to switch their domains and was unable to due to the REGISTRAR-LOCK status and asked them to unlock the domain so they could transfer it.

Looking around on google I see that this domain registrar had been taken to court several times for hijacking domains, for sending emails to people to switch domains and then charging them a very high 'transfer' fee, or just switching without the domain owners consent.

So, next time you see REGISTRAR-LOCK, be happy that your domain can't be switched or modified without your consent. As a matter of policy we REGISTRAR-LOCK all domains to prevent these kinds of hijinks.

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