What Is Domain Privacy Protection, 5 Reasons Why You Need It, and How to Enable It

After registering a domain name, your personal information will be publicly available in the WHOIS database. As a result, you become more prone to spamming, hacking attempts, and identity theft.

Domain privacy protection can help mitigate these risks. This service gives an extra layer of security and maintains your privacy without affecting domain ownership.

This article will dive deeper into what domain privacy is, how it works, and why it’s important. We’ll also show you the steps to activate this feature on Hostinger and check whether it’s enabled.

Domain privacy protection is a service that hides your WHOIS information from the public. As a result, website owners will be less prone to spam messages and identity theft.

How Does Domain Privacy Protection Work

When buying a domain, you must submit your contact details, such as name, organization, location, phone number, and email address. These personal details, along with the registration and expiration dates, IP address, and domain registrar, will be accessible through the public directory.

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) requires this information to verify and authenticate the domain’s registrant. 

Unfortunately, sharing these details publicly leaves room for malicious intent.

Domain privacy protection is a service offered by registrars and web hosting providers that addresses this issue. It replaces your contact details with the service provider’s information, keeping your data private while still complying with ICANN’s registration requirements.

What Is WHOIS Lookup

WHOIS Lookup is a tool for extracting domain details from the official WHOIS database. It’s useful for checking domain availability and finding domain owners for communication or transactions.

Simply enter the website address into the WHOIS domain lookup tool, and it will reveal details of the domain’s registrar and registrant.

the WHOIS Domain Lookup tool on Hostinger

If you enable the domain privacy service, your domain registrar will redact all the registrant fields and replace your email address with a dummy or forwarding address.

An example of a WHOIS record in Hostinger's domain lookup tool

5 Reasons Why You Need Domain Privacy Protection

Let’s talk about the benefits of getting domain name privacy protection for your website. These include better performance, enhanced security, and more efficient email communications.

1. Protect Contact Details and Personal Information

When registering a domain name, you must provide your real contact details for security reasons. ICANN will recognize the listed person or organization as the legal owner of the web address.

Contact details in the WHOIS database are publicly accessible, making it easy for anyone to retrieve the information. Cyber criminals might exploit your data for illegal activities, jeopardizing your safety and privacy.

Domain privacy protection keeps your personal data private, reducing the risk of it falling into the wrong hands.

2. Reduce Spam Emails

Marketers often use WHOIS records to collect your email address and send promotional offers. Spam emails can also contain malware like viruses and spyware, increasing security breach risks.

Activating privacy protection for domain names replaces your actual email address with a masked version handled by your domain registrar. Doing so helps avoid spam emails and protects your email address from being sold to third-party companies without permission.

3. Prevent Scam Phone Calls

Besides email addresses, the WHOIS directory is a great source for telemarketers to collect phone numbers. Having your phone number public can result in unwanted marketing and sales calls.

Even worse, they can pretend to offer domain renewal services when your domain almost expires, a common scam technique. Contact your registrar before sharing personal information on this type of call.

WHOIS protection helps prevent scammers from accessing your contact information, including phone numbers.

4. Prevent Domain Theft

Domain theft involves unauthorized changes to your domain’s registration details, often using personal information to access email and registrar accounts. Hackers might then use your site for phishing by creating real web pages to deceive visitors.

Domain privacy protection adds another layer of protection to your domain. Combined with robust passwords and two-factor authentication, you can stop cyber criminals from misusing your domain and causing harm to your finances and reputation.

5. Prevent Unwanted Traffic

Unwanted traffic, from junk emails to malicious bots, poses significant threats. These bots can launch DDoS attacks or flood your website with fake signups, straining your website’s resources and potentially causing downtime.

Protecting your personal data with domain privacy protection is one way to reduce spam. It also ensures a smooth user experience for visitors, showcasing your brand’s reliability.

How to Activate Domain Privacy on Hostinger

Hostinger includes free WHOIS privacy protection with all hosting plans and domain registrations for supported top-level domains (TLDs).

Follow these steps to activate domain privacy protection manually:

  1. Head to Domains from hPanel.
  2. Select Manage next to the chosen domain.
Domains section in Hostinger hPanel
  1. In the Domain Overview section, toggle on the Protect your privacy option.
Domain Overview in Hostinger hPanel

GDPR and Domain Privacy

Due to privacy regulations like the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), many TLDs have adjusted their policies to protect registrants’ personal data by default.

ICANN’s Temporary Specification for gTLD Registration Data changes how your personal data appears in WHOIS listings to comply with GDPR standards.

However, some information like domain status, expiration date, and registrar details remains public despite these changes.

For this reason, we recommend getting the domain privacy protection service, even for GDPR-protected domains.


Domain privacy is essential for website owners and business email users to keep their personal information from the WHOIS database.

This service replaces your contact details with anonymized information, covering sensitive information like your name and email. The benefits range from avoiding spam emails and unwanted traffic to protecting your identity and preventing potential hacking attempts.

Enabling this service is straightforward, especially on Hostinger. Get the best value by hosting your website or email business with us to access this feature for free.

We hope this article answers your questions about buying domain privacy. If you still have questions, check out the FAQ section or leave a comment below.

Domain Privacy FAQ

This section answers the most frequently asked questions about domain privacy protection.

How Much Does Domain Privacy Cost?

WHOIS protection cost varies depending on the provider. Some domain registrars charge around $10-20/year, while others – like Hostinger – provide it for free.

Can I Get Domain Privacy Protection for Free?

Yes, absolutely. With Hostinger, privacy protection is included in a domain’s cost. Use our domain name search tool to find available domain names and proceed with the purchase. Domain privacy protection will be added automatically during checkout.

How Secure Is Domain Privacy?

A domain privacy service completely hides your personal data from the WHOIS database, lowering the chances of spam, phishing, and potential domain theft. However, it’s part of a broader security strategy and doesn’t guarantee complete protection against cyber attacks. Secure your website, email, and personal info by updating passwords regularly and using extra security measures.

Is Domain Privacy Protection Available for Every Domain?

No, domain privacy protection is mostly available to generic top-level domains like .com, .net, and .org. Certain domains may not support it due to registry or regional restrictions. Check with your registrar for your domain’s eligibility.

The author

Jordana Alexandrea

Jordana is a Senior Content Writer with over 5 years of experience in digital marketing and web development. When she’s not busy with work, she dabbles in creative writing and movie reviewing. Follow her on LinkedIn.