The Town of Westlake’s Mayor, Council, and staff are now using .gov email addresses. Beginning last Friday, all email addresses associated with the Town began using @westlaketx.gov, moving away from the .org addresses used in the past. The Town’s website is also now using .gov as well.
The move was made primarily for security purposes as it is harder for hackers or fraudulent individuals to replicate a .gov address. It also provides for a safer and more controlled domain. Using a .gov domain for our online services helps the public identify our email addresses and website as trusted government sources. Since a .gov domain is only available to bona fide US-based government organizations, using it signals trust and credibility. This can help a municipality like Westlake establish its digital services as official, reliable distributors of information.
Security benefits to using .gov include:
- The .gov registrar requires the use of 2-step verification for all users, and user accounts cannot use passwords that have been found in known data breaches.
- Web browsers now allow domains to be "preloaded" as HTTPS-only. Preloading lets web browsers know to always use HTTPS to connect with any website on that domain.
- The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), GSA, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) help monitor for issues in the namespace.
So how does this impact you? The short answer is, very little. We only ask that you update your address book to include the @westlaketx.gov on your email list since the @westlake-tx.org addresses will eventually go away. We’re excited about this next step in securing our important sources of information and we thank you for your support.