Many small business owners have received letters warning that their domain name will be yanked from the internet unless they pay a lump sum. I bet you’ve received one of these domain network letters too. It was a fraud, and it isn’t that hard to spot. So, you must take action quickly if you get one.
We’ve all gotten spam emails, whether from a scammer or a phishing attempt. You’ve probably also received domain renewal letters in your mail that claim to have a way to help you with your web presence. But are they really legitimate? How can you determine if you’re dealing with a false domain renewal letter?
For starters, if you receive a renewal letter from Internet Domain Name Services (IDNS) with an outrageous bill, simply chuck it in the trash.
You should also be skeptical when you receive a letter from a company you’ve never heard of asking you to renew your domain name.
Which Businesses Receive False Letters Regarding Domain Registrations?
Every business with a registered domain name in the US must renew its domain name registrations annually. This procedure is overseen by The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). ICANN also conducts audits of some of them that do not adhere to the standards as stated.
Mailing letters with a message for domain renewals to unwary businesses is one way scammers prey on them. These letters aren’t coming from the victims’ current domain registrar.
These fraudulent letters typically include a professional domain logo from a registrar or IDNS to make them look legit. But you can tell whether or not it is a scam.
A scammer will send a letter to a domain name owner pretending to be a representative of a domain registrar. Some will tell you that your domain name is about to expire and you need to renew it, or else it will be suspended or deleted.
How Do Scammers Acquire Domain Data?
Businesses purchase domain information from data brokerage firms that gather it from public records to find out about a company. By using WhoIs, they can determine when domains expire and plan their letters’ delivery so that they arrive in the mail before the renewal reminders are delivered through email.
Pay Attention To The Details
Many small business owners have been scammed by businesses that use fraudulent statements. Most businesses use identical scams and a specific style to dupe unsuspecting businesspeople.
At Explode Your Career, a few of our clients received this letter in their emails.
The image above is a clear example of a fraudulent domain network letter. This domainnetworks.com scam promises domain name and business listing benefits while stating that “…you are under no obligation to pay…”
Many fraudulent domain renewal letters use this tactic to wriggle their way out of making refunds should they decide to pay the amount stated in their “solicitation.”
Many other businesses run similar domain scams. Other common examples of fraudulent domain name scams may include:
- domain-listings.org scam
- United States Domain Authority scam
- Main street Web Pros
- Internet Domain Name Service (IDNS)
Why do businesses send false domain renewal notices?
The act of sending false domain renewal letters is also known as domain slamming. Companies believe that these letters are genuine communications from their present domain registrar.
However, the domain registration is transferred to a different vendor, who may demand significantly higher prices than the standard registration fee at their domain registry.
Additionally, domain slamming typically tacks on additional products and services that make it seem like they offer extra value, such as local listing services. These letters appear authentic since they are written in a professional style. These domain renewal scams may also insert a phony payment slip with the business name and details to make it look more genuine.
Why is Registering A Domain Necessary?
Domain names make it easy for the internet to use words to identify websites instead of relying on an IP address system. A domain registration is handled through a system of numerous registrars. You can employ any of these registrars. Still, no one business is in control of the system.
Each registrar determines its renewal fees, but the wholesale costs vary depending on the domain level and requirements. Additionally, each business has a different domain network bill that depends on the amount of information uploaded and that business’s website demands.
A business must fulfill certain minimal conditions to serve as an official registrar. Most of these conditions are difficult for con artists and scammers to fulfill. However, this does not stop them from utilizing their brand to resell services other trustworthy registrars provide.
What Is The Price Range Of A Domain Name Registration?
A domain registration costs between $10 and $20, while a domain name renewal costs between $10 and $40 annually. But since many variables are at play, this price range is not always accurate. However, any solicitation that requests payment above $45 for an annual renewal should raise red flags.
How Do You Identify A Legitimate Domain Renewal Notice?
Cyber Security Ransomware Phishing Encrypted Technology
Examine Public Information
Yes, you may register your domains and include your domain names in the WhoIs database. WHOIS records are available for research. Your WHOIS records contain information such as your expiring date or your registered company. It may include your name, address, and email address (if it happens).
Take A Closer Look
An actual domain registrar rarely send renewal notices by mail since the cost would be prohibitive given the enormous number of domains they administer. In our experience, email is used to handle every domain renewal. As a result, “snail mail” renewals are almost probably a part of a faudulent operation.
Be skeptical of businesses that force you to send a check or cash in the mail rather than paying online with a debit or credit card. Since it’s more difficult to track cash or check transactions, it is easier for scammers to defraud you. Credit card companies provide some protections and the option to initiate chargebacks. However, it is still advisable to exercise caution when uploading your credit card details on online platforms.
Secure Your Domain
Some of the best registrars offer a domain lock function that forbids any transfer until a registered user calls or changes the information through their online account. With this lock feature, it’s far more challenging to transfer your domain or make any transactions you haven’t authorized.
Remember Your Domain Registrar
Remember where you bought your domain. You will get an invoice from the business if you work with a reliable one like GoDaddy.
Verify that the domain name and firm listed on your letter correspond to the information in your files. Write down the name of the company that manages your domain in a file or folder. Check your prior bank or credit card statements to identify earlier charges and compare the firm names.
If You’re Unsure, Consult A Professional
If you still have any questions regarding a domain networks letter you have received, we can help you know if it is genuine or not. For more information, you can take a picture and contact your digital marketing company.
Choosing A Constructive Real Estate Domain Name
If you’re into real estate and selling properties, you probably know how important it is to own a blog or website. While there are many powerful real estate marketing tools, a well-designed interactive website gives you an edge in the real estate market.
Additionally, the first step is to use an effective domain name for your real estate website. Choosing a domain name can be an exciting process. Still, you must ensure you don’t pick a name that drives your potential audience away. The same goes for your website.
A memorable name can also help you boost your SEO rankings and make it easier for people to find you online. There are many potential choices, but making the wrong choice can hurt your business and hinder you from getting the best google reviews.
Ardor SEO Is On Your Side
Are you looking to create a productive domain name or take care of other digital marketing services? Ardor SEO has got your back.
Ardor SEO is an expert in Real estate local SEO, content marketing, digital marketing, website design and development, and other online marketing services. Reach out to us immediately to get your real estate business the exposure it needs to beat the competition.