The takeaway:If you receive a letter from companies like Domain Registry of America, READ IT CAREFULLY. It’s not really a “renewal” but an expensive “transfer” (example below)
If you own a domain name, you really should take a couple of minutes to read this… it’ll save you time, money and a ton-o-hassle.
I received another “Domain Name Expiration Notice” a letter from: Domain Registry of America today stating that one of my domain names was about to expire. Just couldn’t help but post a quickie warning about this “service.” Hey, I love all of the opportunities this country can provide, but I also see many businesses get scammed because they don’t always read the fine print within letters sent from “service” companies sending official looking letters with a bunch of confusing text.
(like the one below click to zoom)
Even though the letter states the details… it also highlights words like “Domain Name Expiration Notice”, knowing darn well that it’s enough to get a busy business owner who doesn’t know the who, what, why, when or where information about their domain name, to sign on the dotted line and send in the money.
If you sign the letter, you’ve:
- authorized the “transfer” of your the domain name to their registrar service
- probably increased your cost by 4X what you should pay. (you shouldn’t pay more than $9 per year per name)
- locked your domain for at least 60 days – and it can be a b*tch to get some registrars to unlock your name to transfer it back to a reasonably priced one
What to do if you get a letter like the one above?
Check who your current registrar is by visiting: http://www.dnsstuff.com/ and perform a “WHOIS” Lookup (just type in your domain name and check the results)
If Domain Name Registry of America is *not* your current registrar then throw the letter away.
Important tips to remember with your domain names:
- Always have the domain registered under *your* email address (not your web guy or an employee – or THEY will own your name)
- Set the domain to “auto renew” yearly or longer
- If you change your email address *make sure to change that info at your registrar or risk losing your domain*
- Don’t pay more than $9-$10 per year, per name
- DON’T check availability for domain names at NetworkSolutions.com – they have been known to register names that folks were researching, but didn’t immediately register. (then hold it hostage for more $$)
Hope that helps take out some of the mystery of domain name registry and transfers and the scams therein.