You may have stumbled upon a site that has the domain withgoogle.com and you are wondering if you could trust this site.
You are right to worry. We all know google.com but haven’t heard about withgoogle.com.
I first encountered this domain with learndigital.withgoogle.com. And just like you, I wasn’t sure if it was a legit Google site. I went ahead to do a bit of research and this is what I found.
There are other sites with this domain like skillshop.withgoogle.com and phishingquiz.withgoogle.com. By the end of this article you will know whether you can trust these sites or not.
Google’s reaction be if withgoogle.com was not legit?
If withgoogle.com was not a legit Google service, Google would have been the first to take action against this domain.
Not only do the sites with this domain use the Google name, but they also use Google’s Logo.
We can’t also say Google hasn’t noticed their activities because there’s quite a number of them out there. They also do very big campaigns as well.
To be Frank, their services are also cutting edge. Much like something Google would offer. I took my time to go through Learn Digital’s site and it was impressive.
What does the Whois say about the withgoogle.com domain?
The Whois is an organization that keeps data on all registered domains. Domain names are very well regulated. Here’s a screenshot I took from Whois about the withgoogle.com domain.
The first obvious thing from the image is the Registrar. The Registrar is MarkMonitor Inc and not Google LLC. That is a bit alarming at first.
But then I did a little check on MarkMonitor and turns out MarkMonitor is a reputable software company in the US. You can check it out on Wikipedia
Now, look at the Name Servers. You would realize they point to Google’s nameservers. This means they were registered with Google.
Google would have noticed any illegitimate activity with their name from a domain registered on their servers of course.
Finally, look at the Organization, it’s Google LLC. Obviously, there’s some form of partnership here.
What was the response on the Google Support Forum?
Well this is not a very strong point to raise here because answers are not necessarily given by Google engineers.
I’ve decided to add it here because it’s the response that won the snippet at the top of the page when you ask Google Search about the legitimacy of withgoogle.com
Why Would Google use a different domain for their programs?
Google could have done this for a number of reasons. The domain google.com is under the highest form of regulation and protection from attacks.
Adding all sorts of content on there would make it more vulnerable to attackers. And so Google can choose to use the domain withgoogle.com for all peripheral programs.
Programs that are only for a short time like the Summer of Code do not need to be on the main Google domain. This also allows for teams other than Google’s main engineers to work on the site since there’s less security threat.
Others also think it gives a sense of partnership, “WITHgoogle”. And this makes sense because a lot of these programs are programs where Google partnered with other entities.
Here is a screenshot I took from the Hacker News forum where they were talking about the withgoogle.com domain.
Given the information about withgoogle.com from the Whois and all the other points raised here, It’s quite safe to say that withgoogle.com is legit and you can trust it.