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Domain Transfer Keys: What Are EPP/Auth Codes?
Charline Hoang
May 19, 2021

If you’re new to the world of domains, you likely have not heard of a domain transfer key, also commonly referred to as authentication or EPP code. Let’s say you feel stuck with a registrar you are no longer satisfied with and you're not sure what to do with your domain(s). Luckily, there is a perfect option available for you to handle this situation and others like it! This article will be going over what a domain transfer key is,  its importance, and how to transfer a domain(s) from one registrar to another.


What is a domain transfer key?

When looking at the domain transferring process, the domain transfer key is viewed as one of the most essential components. This transfer key functions as a type of password made up of a combination of 6 to 16 characters (both numbers and letters) and are only known to the registered domain owner. The key is specifically designed to move a domain from one registrar to another, with the code itself used to initiate the transfer process. The domain transfer key has many names, such as; auth code (authorization code), EPP code (extensible provisioning protocol code), domain transfer code, or domain transfer authorization key.


Why do we need a domain transfer key?

Domain auth codes exist to secure the domain transfer process while also protecting domain owners' domains. If the transfer process for domains was not protected by a domain transfer code, some form of unauthorized transfers would occur, creating risk.  Keeping this in mind, the EPP code for domain transfers reduces the risk of fraud by adding a security measure. Extra information on transferring policies can be seen on ICANN’s domain transfer page. At the end of the day, the domain transfer key provides a safety measure to prevent domain transfer abuse.


How to apply a domain transfer key (Dynadot):

Before moving your domains around, some requirements make a domain “transferrable”. 

  • The domain hasn’t been transferred in the last 60 days

  • Starting transfers is recommended at least 2 weeks before the expiration date

  • An accessible email to verify 

  • Unlocking the domain and request the auth code within the current registrar

Please note, these apply to Dynadot. Various registrars have their own guidelines, so make sure to research accordingly.


Depending on the registry, some domains (mainly ccTLDs) have different transferring processes. You can find frequently asked questions on IANA’s page regarding transferring ccTLDs and to find contacts to transfer your desired ccTLD here.

Starting the transfer:

  1. Locate the registrar’s transfer page

  2. Enter the auth or EPP code

  3. Proceed to checkout and verify the confirmation email

The domain transfer process itself can take anywhere from 5 to 15 days.

For more information check out our help page to transfer into Dynadot. Please reach out to our support team if you have any questions or concerns regarding our domain transfer key.

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