Beware of domain name scams

Beware of domain name scams

Friday 31st August 2018 at 09:52

By Rob

Beware of domain name scams

Domain name scams by email are almost as old as the internet itself, but some are really doing their best to look legitimate!

Read on to find out how to stay clear of these scams.


What are they?

You receive an email in your inbox which tells you something like:-

  • Your domain name is going to expire
  • You must pay them to renew your domain name
  • Expiration notice
  • Or something along those lines!


Please see below a scam email we recently received, relating to a client's domain name. I've blanked out with black lines the clients information for confidentiality.

Domain name scam email


As you can see from above, the email tries to:-

1) Cause panic!

  • Words like "Act immediately" encourage you NOT to read the details, and press the link to pay these guys money (for nothing)

2) Look legitimate

  • If, like us, you understand how domain names work, then by reading the small print  you can see from miles away that this isn't a genuine email.
  • However, if you're not familiar with the lingo, this could easily confuse a technophobe or someone not clued up
  • The scammers rely on a certain percentage of people receiving the email not to understand it's a scam, so they can con you out of your hard earned money

If you pay these guys money, you are literally paying for nothing. They use confusing and misleading terminology to make it look genuine, but that's it.


How to tell the difference between a scam and a real renewal notification

1) Did you receive it from the people you normally pay to renew your domain name?

Let's say you registered your domain name with "COMPANY A". Is the email you're receiving from "COMPANY A", or is it from some company you've never heard of?

If it's from a company you've never heard of, then it's likely a scam!


2) Did you receive it at the right time of year?

Domain names are renewed annually or bi-annually, based on the date the domain name was registered.

So let's say you register the domain name, on 1st Sept 2018. You'll need to renew it around 1st Sept 2019, 1st Sept 2020, 1st Sept 2021, and so on.

If you get a renewal reminder around Feb or March time, then obviously it's going to be a scam!


3) Does your domain name renew automatically?

Many domain name providers, such as ourselves (we're official domain name registrars), automatically renew your domain name for you and invoice you for it (unless you ask us not to). So with a lot of providers you'll simply get an invoice, rather than a threatening reminder.


4) Check with who normally registers your domain name

If in doubt, check with the company you registered your domain name with.

Please note we won't be able to advise you unless you're a client of ours.

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Antiques Web Design

By Rob
Friday 31st August 2018 at 09:52

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