Look after your domain name

Look after your domain name, and it'll look after you. Your domain name is your brand, your address and can be your biggest asset.

At Anyware we see a few email domain scams, this one was sent to a client not so long ago:

"Dear Manager,

Asia Network is the company of internet services that the domain registration is one of the major online styles of our service range. Now we have something need to confirm with you. We hope you to cooperate with us. On July 8th 2008, we received an application from one person named "Joe Blogs" who wants to register some domains(yourcompanyname.cn yourcompanyname.com.cn yourcompanyname.hk yourcompanyname.tw yourcompanyname.asia yourcompanyname.jp)and internet brand(yourcompanyname). According to our investigation, we found that domain names have relevance to your company's name and trademark, so we send this email for you to confirm it. We are dealing with this affair in these days, so we wish to get the confirmation and the assent of your company. If Joe Blogs doesn't belong to your company and you don't authorize him to register these domains, Pls contact with me asap in order to prevent some guy from abusing your trademarks and the company names.

In addition, I must state that we have time limited for one person or one company's registration. It is just 15 days. If your company files doesn't resent within the time limited. We will unconditionally authorised the application of Joe Blogs. Thank you for your cooperate.

Best Regards,"

If the atrocious grammar, spelling and language didn't give it away, and you managed to read it all, then you may be left wondering if this is something you should be worrying about. No.

The intention of this email is to scare you into thinking that Joe Blogs is about to buy some yourcompanyname.xx domains, and that you should hurry and register them first to protect your brand - through Asia network of course. These emails arrive in different forms almost daily. It's best to find a good provider (we use 1stdomains and Register Direct), and stick with them. And always apply common sense when reading mail from people you don't know. This is an example of an imaginary competitor type domain scam.

There are others:
Registration poaching

  • a company contacts you, offering to renew your domain names, and charging you a fee for this. They are effectively poaching business from the existing holder of the domain name
Defensive registrations
  • a company contacts you to register different permutations of your domain name. While it is good to have the most related domain names, the problem is that you can't possibly register all the domains that might be similar to your own. There are too many permutations. Don't register domains defensively when approached like this. If a problem does actually arise, remember you can use laws governing copyright and trademarks to defend your interests.
  • If a company says it can register a domain for 50 years, for example, what they mean is that they'll take your money now and they'll renew it for you every few years when the official registration period expires (if they're still around, that is). You should expect to have to renew domains every 1-5 years depending on the domain extension.

Top tips for protecting your domain name
When approached by a strange company asking to register your domain, you're usually better off sticking with your existing hosts or website design team. You will probably get a better price and you'll certainly have greater confidence that your domain is being looked after by someone you trust.

To avoid getting scammed, make a note of when your domain names are due for renewal and be suspicious of invoices arriving too early. Poachers typically contact you well in advance.

If we register a domain name for you, we will send an invoice 2 months before renewal is due and a 30 day reminder email. If you don't renew a domain name, somebody else can snap it up. You'll not only lose all the traffic you've built up, but your credibility could take a serious hit if your customers go to what they assume is still your website to find disturbing content there.  



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