Today the BBC reported that the website for Ross County Football Club had disappeared. The club's web hosting company deleted a number of websites by mistake over the weekend. What's interesting is that this story was widely covered by the tech press a couple of days before, but it was only once there was a football club involved that it got picked up by the BBC and of course it instantly went to the top of the news. It just goes to show what we care most about in this country.
It's not the first time that this type of thing has happened. We've all heard of businesses which failed to renew their domain names or whose service provider let them down. If you're responsible for a critical website then here's a reminder of what you need in place to make sure you keep your online business online:
- Choose your partners wisely. It's not just about price. You need to factor in the quality of technical service, reliability, speed and quality of support (including out of hours)
- Keep an eye on those key domains. Know when your key domains are up for renewal, keep them on auto-renew or work with someone who does this for you. Store your passwords and authorisation codes safely.
- Protect your key names with domain locks at both registry and registrar level
- Whether you're running your own website or it's done for you, make sure you take regular backups and you follow strong procedures to protect your data.
Some losses are hard to prevent, but there are simple steps you can take to mitigate the impacts of a failure somewhere in the system.