A company called Domain Registry Services has issued a new wave of fake expiration notices to domain name owners. Much like the early 2000's era scam under their former name Domain Registry of America, this company sends a renewal notice that looks like an official invoice, leading many domain owners to inadvertently pay the wrong provider.
While the fine print does disclose that these notices are not an official invoice, the format of the notice, including pricing and payment options, has mislead domain owners who did not read the notice carefully in the past. The best part? The “best savings” offered in these renewal notices costs significantly more than your current renewal fee.
If you have received a domain renewal notification from Domain Registry Services, simply ignoring the notice is the recommended course of action. Your current domain registration provider will still issue a legitimate invoice for domain renewal closer to the actual renewal date for your domain.
WHAT HAPPENS IF I ALREADY PAID DOMAIN REGISTRY SERVICES?
If you mistakenly paid this fake invoice, you will receive a transfer request notification when Domain Registry Services attempts to move your domain under their control. Although most domains registered through Invisible Ink are automatically locked to prevent fraud and accidental transfers, it is important to make sure you do not approve the transfer, as it can be difficult to reverse this process once approved.
Domain owners should deny the domain transfer and ask for an immediate refund for this fraudulent charge.
What can I do to prevent this scam from happening again in the future?
First, we recommend placing a transfer lock on your domain to prevent any third parties from attempting to hijack your domain. Second, adding contact privacy (aka WHOIS Privacy) to your domain will prevent solicitors from accessing your contact information.
If you aren't sure whether your domain is protected, contact us to verify the current status of your domain name registration.
Posted August 05, 2014