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Domain Name Hostage

10:16 pm on Mar 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

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joined:Apr 8, 2004
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Hi All,

I have a tough situation.

I am the webmaster for a new client. The client has his domain registered by a firm which will not respond to phone calls or emails. We are going to be changing web hosts and need to make sure that our client, the site owner, is put in control of his domain name so at renewal time in November 2006 he will be easily able to renew his domain name.

How can we go about removing the domain name lock that this firm has on our client's domain name? We are already having an issue in regard to changing the domain name servers with this same firm who is acting as his web host as well. The client and site owner, tells us that this firm has taken money and he is ready to report him to the police. All in all, this is a distasteful situation and a thorny one. We really need some help to try to clean this up for the client.

Is there anyone who can recommend a course of action? We know that it is a mess.

This is what we need:
1. How do we disable the domain name lock on the domain name due to gross violation of trust on the firm's part and get our client back in control of his domain name so he can renew it when the time comes.

2. How can we force the change of the DNS servers to reflect our new web host that we want to use.

Thank goodness we have the site files!

Thanks very much in advance for any information. We have already sent requests for help to the new Web host and to the place where the firm registered the domain name

1:16 am on Mar 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

New User

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joined:Mar 12, 2006
votes: 0

What's the name of the registrar? Some are easier to deal with than others. From experience though I know that you can make a "transfer request" from a new registrar and as long as you have control of the admin email you should be able to move it to the new registrar without really talking to the current one.
2:13 am on Mar 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member jtara is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

joined:Nov 26, 2005
votes: 0

The first thing to do is to determine if domain name really IS registered to your client. It sounds to me like it may not be.

Check the WHOIS information and see who the registrant is. Is it your client? Or somebody else?

Many web hosts offer "free" domain name registrations, but really what they are offering is to register the domain name of your choice, with THEMSELVES as the registrant. You then have the right to use the domain name as long as you host with them. But it is THEIR domain and if you leave the host you don't get to take the domain name with you.

If this is the case, your client likely has no legal leg to stand on. Perhaps their was some fraud up front, but more likely, it's all there in the fine print that your client agreed to.

It's important to read the fine print UP FRONT, not after you have a crisis.

Your best best is to negotiate and get your client to buy himself out of the mess he put himself into.

If, on the other hand, you client is the registrant, but somebody else is the administrative contact, and your client doesn't have the necessary login and password information to change this, go to the registrar's web site and determine the procedure for having your client change the administrative contact and obtain new login and password information. They will have a procedure for your client to prove that they are the registrant.