Typically, domain names may be transferred between owners or to alternative registrars at any time and for any reason. These transfers may be initiated by any party. However, there are protections in place to ensure that such transfers can occur only on the authorisation of the domain name owner.
A domain transfer may only be initiated by submitting the correct EPP password (also known as an Auth Code or Auth Info). If this information is correctly provided, further authorisation and confirmation is requested from the registrant contact email address for .au domains. For gTLD's, it goes to the registrant admin contact email address.
As an additional security feature, however, domains can be Locked to ensure a domain transfer doesn't occur. Regardless of whether a transfer request is confirmed from the registrant contact email address, the domain will not be transferred while it is locked with the registrar. The lock feature helps to prevent an unauthorised transfer of a domain registration (domain hijacking). Domain registrants are required to Unlock their domains when submitting transfers to any other provider.
However, it must be noted that if someone can call our support line and provide the EPP/Auth code for the domain in question, the support agent can then unlock the domain on that person's behalf. This makes the lock/unlock status somewhat misleading - anyone with the EPP code for the domain can manipulate this status.
Note: All domains are automatically locked when registered with Melbourne IT to provide additional security.
To lock or unlock a domain name:
- Login to the Console
- Click to manage the domain you want to Lock or Unlock
- On the next page, click on Domain Name from the list of options
- Near the top, you will see the option to Lock Your Domain. Click Lock or Unlock on your domain, as required
Note: DNS changes may also require the domain to be unlocked.