Arthur Simmons – InTrust Domains – Bogus Domain Marketing

Domains are cheap and easy to register, and marketing of otherwise low value domains can be so profitable that spammers simply cannot resist the opportunity.

Our favorite example currently goes by the name of “Arthur Simmons” from  “InTrust Domains” but the personal and business aliases this spammer users are no doubt very many indeed.

We’ve seen this spammer send domain sales notices from a variety of email addresses, including:

  • Arthur Simmons <arthur@dni-domainsales.net>
  • Arthur Simmons <arthur@hostingbulb.net>
  • Arthur Simmons <arthur@trafficpad.net>
  • Arthur Simmons <arthur@spiritedconceptsinc.net>
  • Arthur Simmons <arthur@ideathreads.net>
  • Arthur Simmons <arthur@alterconcepts.net>
  • Arthur Simmons <arthur@valuealmanac.net>

And that’s just a small sampling. The domains used by this spammer are all recently registered, all redirect to the same spam landing pages, and are all easily disposable and thus likely to change in the near future.

Most of the emails claim a business address in Colorado Springs, which could be:

InTrust Domains
4845 Peal East Circle, Ste 101
Boulder, CO 80301

or

InTrust Domains
PO Box 88049
Boulder, CO 80908

The phone number of  303-800-0310 is occasionally published as well.

Regardless of which Arthur Simmons is spamming you today, the pitch always revolves around some new domain name that’s become available and that’s horrifically overpriced:

In Trust Domain Spam

Click for Larger Image

Amusingly, this spammer adds a statement toward the bottom of the spam to try and convince you that his spam is some sort of legitimate and desirable domain alerting notice, and provides a link to presumably unsubscribe.  You can be sure that using the unsubscribe link provided will not unsubscribe you from anything. Instead, we can guarantee you that a spammer like this will abuse your address even more, confident in the proven fact that you not only read your spam, but are willing to click on what could be dangerous hyperlinks contained in your spam.

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24 Responses to “Arthur Simmons – InTrust Domains – Bogus Domain Marketing”

  1. … since Sunday we get daily spam mails from Mr. Simmons addressed to the new Producer Forum (www.p-forum.org) just set up on the web couple of weeks ago.

    Important to know: Its not only spamming. Its under legal aspects much more, its a business practice of Domain grapping which must be understood as unconscionability and unconscionability and needfulness (= illegal business practise via immoral contracts (contra bonos mores)).

    Simmons ( appearing to us via dni-domainsales.biz domain) likes to set us under pressure by daily mails announcing to registrate very soon during next days a US TLD *.com (top level domain). But: we are already copyright owner in Europe as the owner of a European domain (and by this registration not only covering the copyright in European Union).

    You must know: registrated Domains which cover an international appearance (e.g. by two language site) have global copyright protection regularly.* For example: If somebody would like to registrate coke.in for the national market in India so fare this domain would be available in India (which is no more 🙂 ) this person would hurt the copyright owner ship of Coca Cola in USA, as they own coke.com already. Clear because of “danger of confusion” so the law/court would argument… (Rec.: Of course the lawyers of Coca Cola registrated coke.com and routed it forward to the official brand name coca-cola.com and of course they same they own coke.in . Such big concerns have internal departments dealing such domains daily within their complexe brand architecture.). So dont try to registrate Gooogle.com just using the benefit from Google.com image. This would be illegal even Google would not need to registrate gooogle.com for protecting their copyrights. So it has to be: some little moral in fair businesses. (Rec.: Of course Google guys registrated gooogle.com because they know that by typing error its clever to offer the user a fowarding to the real domain. And same like with Coke: Google can afford to registrate many thousand domains per year.)

    Smaller organisations cannot afford to registrate all TOP LEVEL DOMAIN endings worldwide, too time and cost intensive and its not required. Not at all… as said, so fare no copyright infrightment exist in the real world one single TLD registration regularly protects all other TLD endings, depending on different factors (e.g. size of the business/market).
    In our case it is as we use the platform internationally you can see it in the footer of the p-forum.org portal site and we broadcast globally radio/tv we have copyright protection automatically.
    ——————–
    *) IMPORTANT: This should not be a cost free online consulting for law aspects. Contact a local media lawyer who is specialist in brands, patents, copyright issues as (s)he knows the details and will consult you individually in your specific case.

    In consequence by advice of our media attorney: we will contact the national NIC inspection authority and inform them about these illegal practices of Mr. Simmons to take away his status as official domain registrant. In your specific case, you should do it, too. Such people have to be stopped.

    Mr. Simmons obviously is practising heavily “domain grapping” and “insider dealings” as he or the company behind him has by his/its status as Domain registrant deeper and quicker access to the global domain database and gets easily informations about new registrated domains who are not registrating all domain endings *.com, *.net; *.biz; *.org etc. … (only global concerns can afford it).

    Again: People should know that mostly registrating a domain automatically creates a copyright ownership on the name (sometimes only for the domain name, sometimes same for the company name or for the personal family name), so fare the domain name on its own does not hurt former and existing copyrights. Yes, copyright is a very complicated thing.

    From case to case specific details decide about the concrete law situation. Anyhow: Internationally domains have copyright protection same on their own as company / brand names. So you could registrate a domain for a pure online shop which has a different name than your business. In our case we are 100% copyright owner. No doubt…

    And not enough: Mr. Simmons from Colorado Springs obviously likes to use psychological methods to set new domain owners under pressure by stealing available domain endings (e.g. if somebody registrates the domainname.org he registrates domainname.biz) and warning the owners via daily spamming to offer the identical domain name for sales on the market. That’s an illegal act we can say “similar / close to Mafia business methods” (less in legal terms: contra bonos mores). And nothing to laugh about…

    So if you have some similar cases best you contact the national Domain registration authority via Fax letter (emails are not recognized front court) and let them know. The NICs control internationally every domain dealer. For example for *.com it is the InterNIC – http://www.internic.net/ (a registered service mark of the U.S. Department of Commerce).

    For other TOP LEVEL DOMAIN ENDINGS see here and check which NIC organisation is relevant for your specific case. Normally each country only has one single central national NIC : http://www.norid.no/domenenavnbaser/domreg.html . Don’t hesitate to inform the authorities about Mr. Aruthur Simmons methods from Colorado Springs and about the companies who are behind him (see P.S.).

    Hope that gives more orientation… tks giving attention.

    Lothar Maier (aka ElJay Arem)
    – Founder of the Producer Forum -.

    P.S.: We have been contacted by Mr. Arthur Simons via arthur@dni-domainsales.biz , InTrust Domains PO Box 88049, Coloardo Springs, CO 80908 (Rec.: The domain is routed then forward to http://dnidomainsales.com with official owner: Domain Names International (DBA InTrust Domains), Colorado Springs – 11605 Meridian Market View #124-134, Falcon, CO 80831. Tel.: 1-303-800-0310 – email: support@intrustdomains.com ).

    http://www.nic.com/nic/whois/ shows the ownership of these domains registrated by CRYSTAL COAL, INC. and by Moniker ONline Services, LLC. Its obvious that by many participated companies / registrants this “illegal business ” shall be protected against investigations…

    Domain Name: DNI-DOMAINSALES.BIZ
    Domain ID: D39288723-BIZ
    Sponsoring Registrar: MONIKER ONLINE SERVICES, LLC
    Sponsoring Registrar IANA ID: 228
    Registrar URL (registration services): whois.moniker.com
    Domain Status: clientDeleteProhibited
    Domain Status: clientTransferProhibited
    Domain Status: clientUpdateProhibited
    Registrant ID: MONIKER2654960
    Registrant Name: Moniker Privacy Services
    Registrant Organization: Moniker Privacy Services
    Registrant Address1: 20 SW 27th Ave.
    Registrant Address2: Suite 201
    Registrant City: Pompano Beach
    Registrant State/Province: FL
    Registrant Postal Code: 33069
    Registrant Country: United States
    Registrant Country Code: US
    Registrant Phone Number: +1.9549848445
    Registrant Facsimile Number: +1.9549699155
    Registrant Email: DNI-DOMAINSALES.BIZ@domainservice.com
    Administrative Contact ID: MONIKER2654960
    Administrative Contact Name: Moniker Privacy Services
    Administrative Contact Organization: Moniker Privacy Services
    Administrative Contact Address1: 20 SW 27th Ave.
    Administrative Contact Address2: Suite 201
    Administrative Contact City: Pompano Beach
    Administrative Contact State/Province: FL
    Administrative Contact Postal Code: 33069
    Administrative Contact Country: United States
    Administrative Contact Country Code: US
    Administrative Contact Phone Number: +1.9549848445
    Administrative Contact Facsimile Number: +1.9549699155
    Administrative Contact Email: DNI-DOMAINSALES.BIZ@domainservice.com
    +++

  2. Chris says:

    Worth noting that the bbb listing for this company has a Ken Palm as the managing partner. A little research into Mr. Palm turns up this:

    http://www.obliquity.com/computer/spambait/domaintasting.html

    The number listed on the bbb site for intrust goes into an unconfigured voice mail and hangs up on you.

  3. Nick Slater says:

    We are under attack by “arthur@” and have reported Intrust Domains to the BBB formally. Although they may be a victim as well, it may encourage them to do something about the identity theft which is making them seem like schmucks. As for “arthur@”, we are happily blacklisting every email and IP he uses without fail upon receipt. What a loser! Probably bottle fed, what do you think?

  4. jay says:

    if its a hacker they are very good…they also somehow tie in your IP address with the domain name you are interested in…Like when I go to their website, it shows me the domain name that they contacted me about…Yes, I was stupid enough to reply, now they are trying to sell me the domain name for three figures…

  5. Brian Smith says:

    It seems that one approach that ‘Arthur’ is using is to mine expiring and expired domain names. I had the .NET and .COM versions of a name for several years and had only actually used the .NET for an experimental website. I didn’t auto renew the .COM since it wasn’t being used. A few months later ‘Arthur’ is trying to sell me back the domain I let expire… Started out at $300 and as of today it is ‘down to’ $97. Since I’m not in any hurry to get it back and since it really isn’t of interest or useful for anyone else, I’m going to wait and see how long it takes to become a normally available domain. I can’t believe that he is paying anything that would do more than put a temporary hold on a domain. At $7.50 to $12.00 for a real one year registration, ‘Arthur’ would need a hit rate of over 10% to break even. If I see my old domain as available, I might consider re-registering it, but then again I let it expire because I didn’t think it useful.

  6. john says:

    Another one for the list..

    arthur@zarns.com

    Got a mail regarding a domain similar to one that i own

  7. The Dude says:

    In the past, I’ve received emails from both Arthur Simmons and the Ken Palm person that somebody else mentioned in the comments. They were trying to sell me a shortened versions of a couple of domain names for several hundred dollars After no response on my part they both offered me discounts off the original price.

    Needless to say, I kept ignoring the emails but watching the registrar info of the domains and after roughly a week or so of having ignored all correspondence, they each quit their squatting and let the domains drop back onto the open market. That’s when I promptly registered them for $10.99 a piece.

    Now Arthur is back at it with me on another domain. You can bet I’ll be running the same game plan with this one. Save yourself the hassle and the money and just ignore them.

  8. Christian says:

    Over the past few days this “Arthur Simmons” criminal has contacted me with the same message using the email adresses:

    arthur@WILDHOGSMC.COM
    arthur@NUCLEUSSL.COM
    arthur@ER09.COM
    arthur@4UDESA.COM
    arthur@MYDRP.COM
    arthur@LOSHP.COM

  9. I got an email from Arthur Simmons supposedly with InTrust Domains. He/she/it was trying to sell me the dot com address we have as dot org. Problem was his email address was for w3ecommerce dot com, which made me suspicious. So instead of clicking on it, I cut and paste it. I don’t click on links in emails even that appear to be from friends–it could still be fake. The cut-and-pasted link went to w3ecommerce etc., then redirected to dnidomainsales dot com.

    No matter how legitimate or not InTrust Domains may be, this apparently isn’t them, so I reported it. I don’t like scams unless I’m the one doing the scamming. 😉

  10. Tony Estafan / Knoxville, Illinois. says:

    I can only describe Arthur Simmons as a low scum bag. This man preys on folks that may have for some reason forgotten to renew a domain. Next he will spam you and people that hold similar domains, or even your own competitors. Emails from Arthur Simmons are suspicious and each one from a different email address.

    Just like “The Dude” writes, it’s best to ignore his emails and patiently wait for the domain to be available in the open market place. We picked up a 3 domains for $10.00 each. Arthur Simmons was asking $400 each (negotiable). People, save yourself the time and money by ignoring the likes of Arthur Simmons.

    Mr. Arthur Simmons has been forewarned in writing. We have already been in touch with our lawyers and intend to take legal action against him for copyright infrigement. We also intend to report him and his organizations to InterNIC for their unethical domain grabbing practices.

  11. Allan says:

    Add this one as well.

    arthur@aqlean.com

  12. Terry says:

    ‘Arthur’ contacted us using arthur@sembay.com

  13. Acc says:

    I can add arthur[@]GENEVAFIRST.COM.

  14. Arthur Simmons

    egarding the upcoming sale of thomasandelizabeth.com:

    There are two days left before the listing of thomasandelizabeth.com. Since you own a similar name, we are holding off to give you a chance to indicate interest. You can do that here – http://CIEROS.COM/2c85106d6fae4848

    This could easily be your one and only chance to secure this domain name, at least at a reasonable cost. We have an A- rating with the Better Business Bureau, because our process is smooth, trouble-free and with great customer service.

    Simply go to thomasandelizabeth.com, fill out the quick form, and you will have priority to acquire this domain at a fair price.

    I look forward to hearing back from you.

    Sincerely,
    Arthur Simmons
    InTrust Domains

    It’s my hope that you love the priority domain notice system. If you don’t, just open the following link and you won’t receive anymore – http://CIEROS.COM/1/2c85106d6fae4848

    To keep the heart unwrinkled, to be hopeful, kindly, cheerful, reverent that is to triumph over old age. — Thomas B. Aldrich 1836-1907, American Writer, Editor

  15. […] Domain scamming has been around since ICANN started and was a "legitimate business" for some time where squatters would do all kinds of stuff morally and ethically in question. For example, a business would lapse on their domain name registration and the squatter would register the lapsed domain name and hold the business at ransom. Folks, if you own a similar domain to one listed in an email scam use the common sense to say "this is obviously a scam on some level". A quick google finds even the most basic information and tell tale signs such as the article here. […]

  16. […] å øke statusen på denne bloggposten overfor søkemotorer, linker jeg gjerne til en annen nettside som også har nyttig informasjon om Arthur Simmons og hans tvilsomme business. […]

  17. winter says:

    he now has a new address as per a spam email I got today.

    Arthur S.
    2316 North Wahsatch Avenue, Suite 108
    Colorado Springs, CO 80907

  18. Rob says:

    I’ve also been approached by “Mr. Simmons” inquiring about my interest in a .com website for the same name of a website that I own the .net domain.

    His first email: Priority Domain Availability Notice for XXXXX.com:

    In the next few days, XXXXX.com will be listed for sale. Since you have a similar domain name, I thought you might be interested in acquiring XXXXX.com.

    You can confirm your interest in the domain XXXXX.com by filling out the form here: http://GREYPLACE.COM/8965450f1e764a34.120

    After I receive a confirmation that you are interested in the domain XXXXX.com, I will be in touch with you promptly to make arrangements.

    I look forward to hearing back from you.

    Sincerely,Arthur S.
    3472 Research Parkway, Suite 104
    Colorado Springs, CO 80920

    This email is a business proposal. If you don’t want to receive this type of notification in the future, please click the following link, and you will be removed from future notifications immediately -http://GREYPLACE.COM/1/8965450f1e764a34.120

    Most find my priority domain notice system to be very useful. If you prefer not to receive these messages, please simply send me a quick email and I’ll be sure you don’t receive any more.

    Management is efficiency in climbing the ladder of success; leadership determines whether the ladder is leaning against the right wall. — Stephen Covey

    —–

    This email was followed up with invitations to place a silent bid, and then another offering me the opportunity to increase my bid etc …

    A few days later, I’ve received a form indicating that I’m the highest bidder and am welcome to proceed to Checkout using credit card, paypal, etc … All very official looking pages (Intrust Domains) with all sorts of clickable security guarantee certificates along the side of the page …. I’m glad I did some googling of his name and found this blog … Saved me from getting scammed.

  19. Michael says:

    From——> alex@tn-invest.com

    Looks like Arthur is now Alex?

    Priority Domain Availability Notice for xxxxxxxx.com:

    In the next few days, xxxxxx.com will be listed for sale. Since you have a similar domain name, I thought you might be interested in acquiring xxxxxxxxx.com

    You can confirm your interest in the domain xxxxxxxx.com by filling out the form here: http://TN-INVEST.COM/d2c85155093f476f.120

    I look forward to hearing back from you.

    Sincerely,Alexander
    Mail Forward:
    2637 E Atlantic Blvd #16493
    Pompano Beach, FL 33062

    This email is a business proposal. If you don’t want to receive this type of notification in the future, please click the following link, and you will be removed from future notifications immediately -http://TN-INVEST.COM/1/d2c85155093f476f.120

    Most find my priority domain notice system to be very useful. If you prefer not to receive these messages, please simply send me a quick email and I’ll be sure you don’t receive any more.

    I wouldn’t hesitate to make another domain purchase, if I found a domain I wanted owned by Intrust Domains. If someone asked about it, I would relay my successful experience.

    Very easy to deal with and strait forward.

    …InTrust to be worthy of trust! Their job is highly-efficient.

  20. EEMargolin says:

    Intrust Domains is a scam! After doing extensive research, they change their officer names and addresses pretty frequently. They contacted me about a domain similar to mine that was coming up for sale and so I was mildly interested. The domain was available for “$97” according to their bidding option, but by then I was already doing a Google search on their scam and found plenty of warnings.

    They sent a congratulatory email saying I won the auction and that I should click on the website of the domain and that if I see an order form, I can place the payment online or call them. Well, guess what…all that’s there was a “page does not exist” warning. I called them out of curiosity and their phone number in Colorado picks up immediately with an automatic greeting that start halfway into the recorded greeting. Unprofessional and fishy.

    I looked up the domain on WHOIS and found that it’s actually for sale for “$69” and found the following information:

    Date Registered: 03/26/11
    Date Modified: 03/28/11
    Expiry Date: 03/26/13
    DNS1: FOR-SALE-AT.INTRUSTDOMAINS.COM
    DNS2: CALL.303-800-0310.COM

    Registrant
    Mark Peters
    Wesley Hayes
    Hollandse kade 7a
    Abcoude, (NL)
    1391 JD

    Administrative Contact
    Rose McCaige
    11605 Meridian Market View #124-134
    Falcon, CO (US)
    80831
    303-800-0310

    So if won the auction on 3/27/11, why was it registered a day earlier for two years? Does that strike anyone else as suspicious?

    I also got two calls today from “Mark” at Intrust Domains who basically encouraged me very kindly to “pay now” on his voice mail message to me.

    One thing that should be glaringly obvious to everyone is the rather cheesy setup for their site and rather unprofessional emails. The site is clearly set up by someone who knows basic HTML and nothing else, using “Free Use” photos that make them look really pathetic. Compare them to WHOIS, Godaddy or any other notable domain registry and they look both incompetent and pathetic.

    After reading about their scams and weird business operation…and the fact that it’s hard to pin them to any specific country in which they operate, then anyone getting duped by them at this point deserves to lose their money…no offense to anyone who got fooled by them earlier.

    There are too many obvious signs that they’re a scam company, and far too many posts about them online to complain that there was no way to know.

    If you want to back-order a domain, do it through a legitimate site that has a strong presence and reputation. Would you buy a car from Earl the Car Guy? Hell no. Why would you buy from “InTrust Domains”? As someone said earlier, don’t trust anyone who immediately tells you to trust them.

    Oh, last note…what kind of idiotic organization sends an email saying, “To check our business references, please refer to the Better Business Bureau.” That implies you don’t have much credibility in the first place.

  21. Jody says:

    They tried selling me a domain for around $400 for quite a while, then just reduced the price to $97. I’ll keep waiting. Here’s the latest email–now from Jeremiah:

    “Keep in mind, just as you can got to this domain and purchase it for the reduced price, so can anyone else in the world. If you go to the domain and it does not display an order page, that means the domain has been purchased and it is no longer for sale.

    If you choose the invoice me option the domain will continue to be for sale until we receive payment via check, wire, credit card or Paypal.

    Thanks and have a great day!

    Jeremiah Stephens
    Intrust Domains
    11605 Meridian Market View #124-134
    Falcon, CO 80831
    (719) 344-2953
    001-719-344-2953(international)
    jeremiah@intrustdomains.com

  22. Stefan says:

    Hi guys, I need some advice.

    I was propositioned by “Arthur” in November 2010 and unfortunately was away from computers in hospital at the time, and now I find that my domain hsa lapsed, been registered by an anonymous (WHOIS blocked) party and shows up as some bogus site that links to a grab-bag of companies in Sweden (!!!).

    See http://www.aforgottenodyssey.com

    I owned this for 10 years, it is used for international sales of a non-profit documentary film, and I still own http://www.aforgottenodyssey.org for what that’s worth.

    Should I go down the path of an ICANN Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution process? It will cost me at least $1500 (!) – money that I do not have…

    Thanks
    Stefan

  23. BP says:

    @Stefan a UDRP won’t work but will still cost $1500 to file. You’re better off buying the domain from Intrust. Despite how this forum feels about their sales tactics, if you buy the domain, they will deliver. If you have an issue, you can always dispute the charge with your bank.

  24. On the other hand, we had an employee approached by a similar marketing scam.

    Ignored the marketing emails and within a week had the domain purchased via GoDaddy for under $12.00.