Starting next week, registrant verification goes into effect at Hover.
Edit: Registrant verification is now in effect.
We blogged about this new ICANN-mandated process late last year but it’s worth bringing it up again as it’s a fairly significant change.
The TL;DR (or short version) is this: ICANN requires that we ensure the email address of the owner of the domain is valid and we do this by sending an email to that email address with a special link. Click the link, and the email address is verified.
Domains that are unverified for 15 days will be suspended. Suspended domains are still yours, but they don’t work until you verify the email. That means your site won’t load, and email/Google Apps won’t work.
Our goal at Hover is to make things as simple and clear as possible. Registrant verification is a pretty simple thing – you get an email, you click a link, you are done.
But there are some different circumstances that add levels of complexity and that’s really what we’ve worked hard to reduce or eliminate.
Nevertheless, there are still some things you need to know:
For those not up on the ins and outs of how domains work, it means that this verification process applies only to generic top-level domains like .com, .net, .org, etc. Country-code domains like .ca or .io aren’t a part of this process as their policies are not set by ICANN.
An easy way to think about it is that if the domain extension is two characters (i.e .ca), then there’s no verification required. If the extension has more than two characters (i.e. .info or .com), then verification comes into play.
For example, if you register a domain and you use the same contact information as you use for your other, verified domains, then you are good to go.
Same goes for when you edit the contact info on an existing domain. If you change the contact details and they match another domain that is already registered and verified, then you are all set.
For the most part, verification is something you’ll only have to do when you register a new domain, transfer a domain into Hover, or when you edit the contact details on an existing domain. These are all things you do, so we can give you a heads up when you do it that you might need to verify the email.
But there is one other situation that could trigger the verification process that can happen outside of you doing something. If we send a reminder notice to the owner contact and that email bounces back as undeliverable, then the verification is required again as that email address is deemed to be invalid and ICANN requires a valid email address.
The best way to avoid this is to ensure that you have a valid, working email address in the owner contact email field at all times. As long as you can get mail at that email address, you won’t have a problem.
In every case, Hover will do a few things to ensure that you know the status of all the domains in your account. Our recent redesign of the domain manager added icons that give you a visual clue that everything is either all good, or that there is something you should be aware of.
Our notification bar and activity feed enhancements provide us with a way to notify you outside of email that there is something needing your attention.
If you have any concerns about how this all works, give Hover Support an email (email@example.com) and they’ll help you out. As mentioned above, as long as you have a valid, working email address that you have access to as the owner email contact, registrant verification is pretty simple.
With that in mind, we strongly suggest that you ensure that you have valid contact data for all the domains in your Hover account at all times.