Most Common Domain Scams

A domain name is a vital part of your brand as it identifies and promotes your business through all digital channels.

Most Common Domain Scams

In 2010, Facebook vividly illustrated the enormous value a domain name could have on the business – they paid 8.5 million to acquire the domain fb.com from another organization (which is 42 times more than the company initially paid to obtain facebook.com). 

Your domain is a vital asset for your organization, and as such, you have to protect it from scammers. Scammers become more adept by a minute, and you have to treat every offer for services you receive with vigilance and caution. 

To protect your business from scammers, we have gathered the three most common domain name scams and some of the best ways to avoid them. 

Watch out for these three common domain name scams. 

Domain name scams are designed to trick the domain owner and benefit the scammer. Here are the three most common domain name scams.

Common Scam 1: Website Listing Services 

One day your company receives an email titled “website listing services”. These unethical companies claim that your website is not performing well and promise impressive-sounding services like a full domain name submission to the search engines and all social media channels. 

It also promises that your domain will be “listed” on high-traffic websites for a certain period of time (usually 12 months). The service is usually modestly priced.  

Given the fact that you are promised to receive better search engine results, it sounds like an excellent marketing investment. However, these services are worthless and can do nothing but harm your website and company’s reputation, because these “listing” services do nothing but collect hefty payments for worthless services. So, the next time you receive such an “impressive” offer, throw it where it belongs: to the trash. 

And if you want to improve your search results (which is a great marketing goal), always speak with a trusted partner backed up by experience and results. 

Common Scam 2: Domain Slamming 

Domain slamming is used effectively by shady domain name registers. Here is how it works… 

One day you get a notice (usually by email) from a company that claims to be a domain registrar, titled “renewal information enclosed”. The letter has a sense of urgency, mentioning that your domain name is about to expire. The email usually contains price plans and includes a URL where you can go and pay for your domain renewal. It all sounds like a legit bill, right? 

Well, not exactly. This is a classic example of domain slamming. All those companies are trying to achieve is to trick you into switching your domain name registration from the company you initially purchased it to their own. 

A red flag in such emails is any reference to “transferring” a domain name. This is nothing but an attempt to trick you into transferring your domain name to their company at the moment you renew it. It’s an easy scam many people fall into as you have to renew your domain periodically, and you might not realize that you are renewing and transferring your domain name to a shady domain company. 

Common Scam 3: Chinese Domain Names 

Another common scam involves emails sent out primary by Chinese domain registration companies. These scammers send emails to companies that attempt to convince the recipient that the brand name is in danger of being registered by a third party.  

The message describes the situation as urgent and advises the domain name owner to register similar domain names to protect their brand quickly. These unethical companies hope that the domain name owner will fall for fear of losing their brand identity and will purchase the new domains. In addition to winning business, those companies collect heavy fees.   

How to avoid domain name scams? 

To avoid such scams, we have collected some tips that will help you stay away from scammers: 

  1. Note when your domain name will expire and the company where you initially purchased your domain name. 
  2. Renew your domain name only through the company you originally purchased it from and never use intermediaries. 
  3. Most registrars provide a locking feature, which prevents you from transferring your domain without express written confirmation from the company. We highly advise using this feature. 
  4. Never share personal or other sensitive information with a suspicious third party. 

Remember the golden rule – when in doubt, contact an expert. If something sounds too easy to be true, it probably is. If you are in doubt or have any questions, you can contact the expert here. 

Domainer.com offers a boutique, personalized, end-to-end domain buying experience that no one else provides.  

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