Registration Proclamation — Domain Registration Fraud

Let’s settle this once and for all:

You don’t get to “authorize” attempted registrations of domain names similar to the one(s) you own. If you register a domain, it’s yours. The other similar domain names are fair game unless you register them too.

Of course this fraud campaign would like you to think otherwise:

Subject: Registration Proclamation

From: “Derek Lau” <derek@dis-network.com>

(This is very urgent, Please forward this to your CEO.)

Dear CEO,
We are the department of Asian Domain registration service in china, have something to confirm with you. We formally received an application on December¬†3, 2010. one company which self-styled “Some Fictional Company” were applying to register”yourdomain” as Network Brand and following domain names:
yourdomain.asia
yourdomain.hk
yourdomain.org.cn
yourdomain.my
yourdomain.com.my
yourdomain.ph
yourdomain.sg
yourdomain.ae
yourdomain.vn
yourdomain.com.vn
After our initial checking, we found the brand name were similar to your company’s, so we need to check with you whether your company has authorized that company to register these names. If you authorized this, we will finish the registration at once. If you did not authorize, please let us know within 7 workdays, so that we will handle this issue better. Out of the time limit we will unconditionally finish the registration for “Some Fictional Company”.

Best Regards,

Derek Lau
Senior Consultant
Tel : (+86) 551-5223174
Fax : (+86) 551-5223175
10/F,Jindi International Building,No.588 MaAnshan
South Road,Baohe District,Heifei.

dis-network

Lies. All lies.

First of all, the line that says “Website:http://www.dis-network.org” is an image file. So they’re trying to hide that URL from spam filters. They also spoofed the “From:” address (derek@dis-network.com) for the same reason.

This tells us two things:

  1. The sender of this email needs to hide the domain dis-network.org to get their messages delivered.
  2. Spam filters block messages from dis-network.org.

Now why would a reputable domain registrar need to fear spam filters?

The answer is, they wouldn’t. So DIS Network is either sending spam or they tolerate affiliates that send spam. In either case their legitimacy is questionable.

So How Do I Know If It’s Fraud?

This one’s easy: Nobody does this.

Real domain registrars either register domains or they don’t. No legitimate domain registrar puts a registration on hold while they check with the owners of similar domain names to see if they authorized the registration.

It just isn’t done.

On the other hand, this is similar to the process for transferring domains. If someone attempts to transfer a domain (i.e. take control of it) your registrar will contact you to see if the they should authorize the transfer.

So, if someone contacts you to let you know that they’ve been asked to register yourdomain.asia or yourdomain.ru (really anything other than .com or .org) and they want to make sure it’s okay with you, it’s a scam. What’s really going to happen is, when you contact them, they will try to pressure you into buying a bunch of domain names that you don’t need.

Unless you’re a huge multinational corporation you don’t have to worry about having domains on every possible Top Level Domain (TLD) to protect your brand. Of course, if you’re planning on becoming the world’s biggest widget manufacturer you might want to grab as many as you can before you have to sue somebody to get them.

Just don’t register them with these guys.

- -

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4 Responses to “Registration Proclamation — Domain Registration Fraud”

  1. I just had the same thing mate:

    It’s very urgent, Please transfer this email to your CEO or appropriate person, Thanks)

    Dear CEO/Principal,
    This is Felix Dou—Senior Consultant of domain name registration and solution center in china. have something to confirm with you. We formally received an application on December 20, 2010, one company which self-styled “Brown & Sons Ltd” were applying to register “webcoursesbangkok” as Network Brand and following domain names:
    webcoursesbangkok.asia
    webcoursesbangkok.cn
    webcoursesbangkok.co.in
    webcoursesbangkok.com.cn
    webcoursesbangkok.com.hk
    webcoursesbangkok.com.tw
    webcoursesbangkok.hk
    webcoursesbangkok.in
    webcoursesbangkok.net.cn
    webcoursesbangkok.org.cn
    webcoursesbangkok.tw
    After our initial checking, we found the name were similar to your company’s, so we need to check with you whether your company has authorized that company to register these names. If you authorized this, we will finish the registration at once. If you did not authorize, please let us know within 7 workdays, so that we will handle this issue better. Out of the time limit we will unconditionally finish the registration for “Brown & Sons Ltd”.

    Best Regards,

    Felix Dou
    Tel: +86-551-5223-174 || Fax: +86-551-5223-175
    10/F,Jindi International Building,No.588 MaAnshan South Road,Baohe District,Heifei,China.
    http://www.dis-network.org

    ———————

    Dear Carl Heaton,

    Thanks for your response. We indeed received the application from that company and the domains they are attempting have the same body as yours. If they use these names to take some illegal actions, there will be negative effect to your business. However, as the owner of the trademark, you have the priority to register those domains. In addition, if we finish the registration for that company without your awareness, we will be liable for the consequences, but now you have been notified and we only would like to confirm if you are going to register and protect these domains. If you are not interested in the protection by yourself, we will be the domain provider of that applicant and will not bear any responsibility in future because of our notification previously.
    Anyway, please confirm by return and we will be glad to forward the dispute application form to you if you are intended to protect these domains.
    In addtion, Here is a registrar in China, and we are responsible for the Asian domain registration and management work, please find enclosed our business certificate.
    Looking forward to hearing from you.

    Best Regards,

    Felix Dou
    Senior Consultant
    Tel: +86-551-5223-174
    Fax: +86-551-5223-175

  2. Zora says:

    thank you for analyzing and sharing it.

    we had just received the same mail from the very same ‘institution’ and were wondering what these guys are up to.

    thanks to this article, now we’re sure what we’re gonna do.

    cheers!

  3. Ronny Sherer says:

    I had the same.
    In my case he called himself Frank Xu and the company trying to my domain was “Clayton Soup & Co”.

  4. What are you planning? Can I help?