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Is This A Domain Name Scam? Please Help!

     
9:55 am on Mar 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

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A company called me today saying someone was trying to register 12 domain names which use my company name.

<edit to clarify> eg. if my domain is www.mycompany.com the domains they are trynig to register are www.my-company-name-uk.com... www.mycompany-name-europe.co.uk (yes they really are this bad)

Apparently their 'legal' department noticed something suspect as the name trying to register the domains is not the same as the credit card holder. Hence they took the trouble to track down the contact details of the company to double check.

They went on to explain the domain names if registered by joe bloggs can be redirected anywhere, most likely to unsavory content.

They want 1200 to register these 12 domains! Obviously this is not going rate for domains - but truth be told I dont even want these domains they are pretty rubbish.

Can I publish the company name that are selling the domains please? I am 99% certain this is a scam

The website is not cached (at all) and I can not find any info related on google.....

[edited by: soxos at 9:59 am (utc) on Mar. 18, 2008]

9:58 am on Mar 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Scam!

Either ignore it and your domains will probably not be registered or register them yourself elsewhere for a much lower fee if your really worried.

Definately a scam and I have had this before from a company claiming to be called the domain register of europe - do a google search for the company name they have given you and you should be able to turn up some useful info...

9:59 am on Mar 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Sounds like a scam to me. Besides, you're protected legally from people misusing your company name, including in domain names.
11:03 am on Mar 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

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This has been around for more years that I can remember. They are gold diggers after a fast buck.

One time, many years ago, one of these companies called me and said similar domains were being registered. While I played dumb on the phone, I was registering the domains and completed the registration before the end of the telephone call. LOL

If you really want those domains, register them yourself.

11:12 am on Mar 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

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While I played dumb on the phone, I was registering the domains and completed the registration before the end of the telephone call.

I immediately visualized the whole scenario, and I can't really stop smiling.

11:21 am on Mar 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

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That's a good trick ;)

Although, the possible permutations of company names in a domain are endless - you couldn't register them all even if you wanted to.

11:24 am on Mar 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Well to be honest - I don't want any of them, I have all the variations I want and I just dont want to go down the road of registering anything with my company name in!... Shall i publish the company name who are trying to scam or is that a no-no on here?

[edited by: soxos at 11:32 am (utc) on Mar. 18, 2008]

11:26 am on Mar 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

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the possible permutations of company names in a domain are endless

Yea, but good to start with the obvious ones: different tlds, hyphen separated, plural form, ...

There are a few banks I know of, which haven't really been bothered to register the .net and .info of their main sites.

11:26 am on Mar 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Unfortunately, I fell for such a scam just last month but, like engine, I registered the domains elsewhere immediately. The 'elsewhere' was <No names please> and I have subsequently found out that they do not support 301 redirects

[edited by: Masca at 11:27 am (utc) on Mar. 18, 2008]

[edited by: Webwork at 11:32 am (utc) on Mar. 18, 2008]
[edit reason] Sorry, we don't allowing hosting recommendatons per Charter and TOS [/edit]

11:31 am on Mar 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Soxos, you have done a nice job of alerting others to the scam. However, we don't need the know the scammers "business name", only their means and methods or M.O. - Modus Operandi - a term detectives use to refer to patterns of criminal activity. (Learn a new word every day. ;) )

Names change but M.O.s remain fairly constant. The minute the scammer's name is publicized a typical scammer will change their name and continue doing the same thing. Therefore, it's likely a bit more helpful in the long term to clarify and exemplify what the scammer is doing or how they are doing than it than it is to know their name.

Also, by policy WebmasterWorld shuns "naming names". We make rare exception for companies whose bad practices have reached the depth of bad and scale of impact that the company becomes the target of government or governing body investigation or prosecution, and news of such official intervention has reached the mainstream media.

[edited by: Webwork at 12:48 pm (utc) on Mar. 18, 2008]

2:48 pm on Mar 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

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A few weeks ago I received a very legitimate sounding email (from China) warning me how the legal dept was aware of a new company applying for a Chinese trademark on my name so I need to register all the other extensions (of course with them as the registrar) to stop the other firm from getting all extensions. They even said if I fail to do so my domain would be given to the new trademark owner.
10:55 pm on Mar 25, 2008 (gmt 0)

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A few weeks ago a fraud program on the Dutch television channel investigated these scams. It seems to be organized by an international group and they have offices in serveral European countries. Soxos, if I read your post, they used exactly the same methods and could well be the same group.