Domain Renewal Scam
I was a bit taken aback when the first client asked me about this because, as part of my Webmistress Hosting duties, I had renewed their domain a couple of weeks before but, as soon as she told me the name of the company sending the invoice and the prices involved, I knew it was a scam. Domain Services is not the current registrar of her url and these figures are considerably more expensive than anyone should be paying just to buy a domain name.
1 year $75
2 year $119
5 year $199
We had actually paid £26 for three years with her current registrar. Considerably less than the price these charlatans were trying to charge her for just one year.
And then I received one from a different domain renewal service for one of my own websites. This one wanted £25 for one year but recommended that I opt for two years at a cost of £40, which would save me £10. Well, actually, I think I will renew with my current registrar who only wants £7.11 for one year and £14.45 for two.
They are dressed up to look like official documents and if the client does not know who they have paid for their domain, it can be very easy to get sucked into paying considerably more than is necessary.
Googling the subject, I found that David Risley was talking about the problem two years ago so guerrilla tactics mentioned on the eukforum like using the return envelope to send them sand or other less desirable contents has not worked in terms of protecting others. It may have made them refrain from targeting certain domain names but now they just don’t include a return envelope.
Some have said that the only way to deter them is to make your registration private but at £6 extra per year per domain for the pleasure, it’s an expensive do and one of the renewal requests that I have received is for a company that was privately registered prior to receipt so it does not protect you unless you take the privacy out from the start.
I shall be emailing all my clients to warn them about this scam.
Suite 1, 103 Leigh Road Leigh-on-Sea, Essex, SS9 1JL UK
firstname.lastname@example.org • 01702 476517