How do you find out who owns a domain name? Aside from the obvious answer, which is use a Whois tool, such as, through years of experience, hours of research, and some creative guesswork, we are often able to identify the likely owner of a domain name, even when the domain name is hidden through privacy protection.

For particularly tough domain name investigations, I will even engage a domain name investigator on my client’s behalf. The investigator will employ various tools and methods that are not readily available or obvious to the layman, and will often come up with excellent results. On occasion however, it is simply impossible to find the identity of a particular domain name owner, except by obtaining a court order.

Once we identify the domain name owner, we are then able to make contact with the hidden domain name owner on your behalf. Sometimes it is to make an offer to purchase the domain name, and sometimes it is in order to send a cease and desist letter to the domain name owner. At other times, it is crucial to identify the domain name owner so that we can prepare a comprehensive and specific set of allegations about the cybersquatter’s history of bad faith domain name registrations and cybersquatting. We use this information for a very powerful UDRP complaint. Accordingly, a solid domain name investigation is the key to a successful domain name acquisition or trademark enforcement procedure.

Zak Muscovitch