Prime Minister Scott Morrison learned a valuable lesson the hard way today when his website’s domain was taken over— and there’s absolutely nothing he can do about it.

The Prime Minister failed to renew the domain scottmorrison.com.au, allowing someone to purchase it for the grand sum of $50. They then replaced the entire website with a single image of Scott Morrison set the to rock song “Scotty Doesn’t Know” from the 2004 teen comedy film EuroTrip.

As amusing as the prank is, it also serves as a pretty scary reminder of something that could happen to any digital business— even yours.

You have no legal entitlement to your own domain

Domains are generally able to be purchased for a period of one to two years— tops. There’s no such thing as buying lifetime rights to a domain.

Someone could be watching your domain right now, waiting for it to expire so they can purchase it for themselves. And if this does happen, you have no legal standing to demand ownership of that website. Yes, even if you own the legal rights to your own business name.

If someone does purchase your domain when it lapses without your knowledge, they might even hold it ransom. It’s not uncommon for people to charge hundreds or even thousands of dollars for a single website. Is that really a business expense you can afford?

How can you protect your domain from being stolen?

As the Prime Minister could probably tell you, it’s extremely important to keep all your domains up to date to prevent someone from buying them out from under you.

While it’s a business’ responsibility to protect their own domain, it’s possible you might not even know the exact date that your domain expires. After all, Scotty didn’t know— and now the joke’s on him.

This is why it’s so important to have a professional guiding your web presence and management. When you hire a digital agency who knows the ins and outs of websites and marketing, you can rest assured knowing that small but important details like this are kept up to date.

The best way to protect your business from losing its domain is to have a team of expert strategists dedicated to your website. This is where Emote Digital can help. Get in touch today to take the confusion out of website maintenance and keep your business’ online presence running smoothly.

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