Domain Name Registration Scams - Version2 - Canada

Domain Name Registration Scams -
Domain Notification Center - version 2

Here's another version of the same sleazy attempt to con domain name owners by using the information available from the public domain name registrars.  If you own a website, and particular, a domain name, you will probably soon receive an email that looks like the one below.  We've substituted generic phrases in purple for the names you'll see, but other than that, this is what you will see.

Here's how their scam works:  The owner of a domain name receives an email like the one below, from

  • Domain Notification Center - Domainnotificationcenter.us
  • Domainupdater.us
  • Domain Notification Central, Domain Notification Central.com, Domain Notification Central.us
  • Updatecenter.us
  • Notificationcenter.us

The subject of the email "This is your final notice of domain listing" clearly implies that your domain registration has expired and been purchased by someone else and you are about to lose your domain name.

According to Whois.org, the contact information listed on most is:

Domain Services
Domain Listing Center
8171 Yonge St.
Suite# 149
Thornhill, ON L3T 2C6
866-441-0244

support@domainlistingcenter.com

A previous address that has been reported to be used was:

130 Church Street Suite 280 New York, NY 10007
800 270 5944
support@domainnotificationcenter.us

Be sure to see the previous scam they sent out, on this page and the U.S. version from a New York address, calling itself "Domain Solutions Central"here.


Here is what the scam email looks like:

-----Original Message-----
Domain Update Center
9251-8 Yonge Street Suite 968
Richmond Hill, ON L4C 9T3
Phone: 1-866-441-0244
Fax: 1-718-208-4213

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FINAL NOTICE
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ATT: John Doe
ADMINISTRATIVE CONTACT
John Doe
<full contact information was here>
<your domain name here>


Please be advised that the above noted domain name has now become available for registration.
Consequently the possibility of conflicting domain registration may occur.



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IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE UNITED STATES LEGAL CODE
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TITLE 15, Sec 1125. False descriptions, and dilution of Trademarks and the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP)
Be advised: Protecting a domain name registrant or trademark owner from confusing and/or conflicting domain name registrations is not the responsibility of the domain and trademark registration processes. In the event of a registration of the above noted domain by a third party, the UDRP may be applied under the following conditions.

Evidence of Registration and Use in Bad Faith. - For the purposes of Paragraph 4(a)(iii), the following circumstances, in particular but without limitation, if found by the Panel to be present, shall be evidence of the registration and use of a domain name in bad faith:

(i) circumstances indicating that the domain name registered or acquired the domain name primarily for the purpose of selling, renting, or otherwise transferring the domain name registration to the complainant who is the owner of the trademark or service mark or a competitor of that complainant, for valuable consideration in excess of your documented out-of-pocket costs directly related to the domain name; or
(ii) the domain name has been registered in order to prevent the owner of the trademark or service mark from reflecting the mark in a corresponding domain name, provided that you have engaged in a pattern of such conduct; or
(iii) the domain name has been registered primarily for the purpose of disrupting the business of a competitor; or (iv) by using the domain name, registrant has intentionally attempted to attract, for commercial gain, Internet users to their web site or other on-line location, by creating a likelihood of confusion with the complainant's mark as to the source, sponsorship, affiliation, or endorsement or your web site or location or of a product or service of a web site or location.

In addition to remedies provided for by the URDP, section 4a (1)(2)(3) & b (1)(2)(3)(4) existing registrants, trademark and service mark owners are provided by DUC with a first right to use preference on domain names that are identical with new ccTLD, TLD extentions, or domain names that are confusingly similar to their own.

You are required to advise the Domain Update Center of your intent to license this name on or before the expiration of this notice.

Note: you may disregard this notice. If you disregard this notice or fail to reply:
(a) The licensing rights of this domain name may be assigned to any other applicant,
(b) DUC and or any ICANN accredited registrar will not be liable for loss of domain name license, identical or confusingly similar use of your company's domain name; or interruption of business activity or business losses.

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PLEASE READ CAREFULLY
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If you fail to reply to DUC this domain may be registered by any third party without further notice. You must advise us of your intent to (a) secure this domain name or (b) release your first right to use preference.


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Call 1-866-441-0244
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The information in this letter contains confidential and/or legally privileged information from the notification processing department of the DUC. This information is intended only for the use of the individual(s) named above. Email miranda5@myway.com if you do not want to receive further updates from DUC. If you are not the intended recipient, you are hereby notified that disclosure, copying, distribution or the taking of any action in reliance on the contents for this letter is strictly prohibited.


Other references and background information related to this and similar scams

See these pages:

 

Other Domain Registration Scams

"Domain Registry of America" (also called "Domain Registry of Canada")

This "company" is targeting domain name owners to transfer their domains by renewal. They are a reseller who use the following ICANN accredited registrars:

  • eNom Inc. (eNom.com)
  • Brandon Gray Internet Services, Inc. (NameJuice.com)

They obtain your contact information through the publicly accessible WHOIS database, and send renewal notices through regular postal mail in an envelope and on stationary that is intentionally designed to look like an official renewal notice.

Do not make any payments to "Domain Registry of Canada"/"Domain Registry of America" in order to renew your domain. Just renew your domain, when necessary, with the registrar you initially used! You can always transfer your domain to another company at any time, if you so choose!

If you have already made a payment to this company, we suggest contacting your bank or credit card company and ask for the payment to be stopped or reversed.

" Domain Registry of America" have already had a court injunction against them with regard to domain name reselling. For more information, please read these articles:
http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2003/12/domainreg.htm
http://www.whois.sc/news/2002-12/registry-america.html


What should you do?

Should you receive ANY unsolicited email or postal notices from ANY company regarding your domain registration, please:

  • Forward the email directly to SPAM@UCE.GOV  which goes to the FTC's Consumer Complaint division
  • Don't respond to the email or fax

  • Cancel any payment you may have made to them.
  • Renew your domain with your existing registrar.

You can report them here:

Advertising Standards Canada (ASC)
Address: 175 Bloor Street East, Suite 1801, Toronto, ON M4W 3R8
Telephone: +1 416 961 6311
Fax: (1 416) 961 7904
E-mail: linda.nagel@adstandards.com
Website: http://www.adstandards.com
Main Contact: Ms. Linda J. NAGEL
Other Languages Spoken: English

And for their violation of the CAN-SPAM act:

To file a complaint or to get free information on consumer issues, visit www.ftc.gov or call toll-free, 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357); TTY: 1-866-653-4261. The FTC enters Internet, telemarketing, identity theft, and other fraud-related complaints into Consumer Sentinel, a secure, online database available to hundreds of civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad.

The FTC advises consumers to protect themselves by:

  1. Avoiding any domain name pre-registration service that guarantees particular top level domain names or preferential treatment in the assignment of new top level domain names.
  2. Avoiding doing business with people who send unsolicited faxes - regardless of the offer. Unsolicited faxes are illegal.
  3. Staying on top of the news about top level domain names at the ICANN website, www.icann.org.

We can add to that:

  1. Stick to well known, larger domain registrars (like Godaddy.com, 1and!.com, etc.).  They have the best rates (usually) anyway.
  2. Once you have registered your domain name, return to the same registrar for renewals and any changes.
  3. If you want to change domain registrars, do so through the process established, by starting at your current registrar.

And please let us know about any suspicious calls or emails you receive.  We look for patterns so that we can alert the authorities and victims to new scams, before it is too late!

 

 


 

For a comprehensive list of national and international agencies to report scams, see this page.