Friday, September 07, 2007

Scam Alert: Phony renewal services

This morning I received a polite, well-written email from a company called Domain Renewal Services. They informed me that one of my domain name registrations is about to expire, and offered to renew it for me.

Since I couldn't remember dealing with this company, I checked with the firm with which I did register that domain. They confirmed that expires in three months and can be renewed for $17.98 for two years.

That made me curious, so I looked again at the original email from Domain Renewal Service and clicked through to see what “service” they actually provide. They were offering to renew the domain name for me – for $79.95. For one year. A 700% markup.

Most domain-name registration is public, so these types of pirates must be flourishing. To avoid them, you can register domain names confidentially by paying a small extra fee (except, I believe, for .ca names). I’m beginning to think the extra fee is worth it.

At any rate, watch out for scammers offering to renew your domain names for you. Should you receive any information from a name you don't recognize, check with your original supplier first.

UPDATE: I looked a little more closely into “Domain Renewal Services.” It claims to be based in Brussels, but no Belgian I ever knew talked this badly:
"We know that internet is a fast growing market and it is of great importance to take a part of it. Our customers are large multi-national corporations mid size firms as well as small businesses. We operate with a grate number of partners all over the world and therefore have access to the grate competence and technical knowledge with in Internet."
Domain Renewal's website is also prominently adormed with the logos of Cisco, Microsoft, IBM and Oracle. Watch out for wolves in sheep’s clothing.

1 comment:

George Torok said...

What else would wolves wear?

George Torok