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Scam: Domain Renewal Fraud (droa.com)

Got a letter today from "Domain Registry of America", informing me that my business domains were about to expire and they would kindly renew them for me. Trouble is, they're not my host - and their charges are about 400% higher than what I'm paying now.

Here's a scan of their letter:



The letter does say in a number of places that it is a solicitation, that you are changing providers, and that this is not an invoice - but I'm certain that they get enough business from people who don't read the letter carefully that it makes it worth their while to continue the scam.

Notice all the fine print on the back:



I didn't bother to read it, but it's a pretty sure bet that there's more than one "gotcha" in there for people who are fool enough to sign up with them.

A quick visit to their website caused a WOT (Web of Trust) intercept - here are some of the comments:


"This company is engaged in sending out fraudulent "renewal" notices for owners of domains that are managed by other registrars, in other words, customer hijacking tactics. Do not do business with them. Ignore their letters."

"This company sends out letters to domain name owners (presumably by using publicly available whois info), warning them that their domain is about to expire and that they need to renew using the form they send out. The problem is that they are *not* renewing your domain with your current provider when you return the form with your payment details to them! Not to mention the renewal prices are inflated by about 300% with this company, though they tell you that you're "saving" money by switching to them. Don't fall for this scam."

"They may not send spam by email, but using whois information for marketing purposes to send postal spam is the same thing."


Despite the Buffalo address, this appears to be a Canadian company. There was an FTC action against them in 2003, but these drones continue to ply their trade.

There is some very good information about domain registration here: 10 things you MUST know before you register a domain name with anyone - just ignore their solicitation for their own registration service at the end.



Stay far away from these slime-molds. You have been warned.

This has been an Old Wolf public service announcement.


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Comments

deckardcanine
Mar. 21st, 2012 02:20 am (UTC)
Wow, not only did you make three posts about different scams in one day, but my Friends page had no other entries between them. Are you stepping up your game because they are?
bayliss
Mar. 21st, 2012 02:51 am (UTC)
I used to get notices from them all the time. I used Yahoo to host my site.. for $12.95 it does what I want. Nobody goes there and I use it to host photos and that's about it. *shrugs*
secoh
Mar. 21st, 2012 04:04 am (UTC)
Yeah I get them for my Australian domains too. They have a Melbourne PO box address. I send them all my junk mail in their reply paid envelopes.
ccdesan
Mar. 22nd, 2012 03:09 am (UTC)
I thought in Oz you could put "No Junk Mail" on your mailboxes... is that not correct?

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