Archive for domain

Domain Registry of America Scam

Posted in All posts, Life with tags , , , , , , , , on April 11, 2008 by Trina

This post is a warning for anyone with a Web site. I received a deceptive notice yesterday from Domain Registry of America (DRoA). See image below. It made me so angry that I had to write this post about DRoA. The notice came by snail mail in an envelope with my correct name and address–which really ticked me off–and included a return envelope for payment. The notice looks like a bill and was written to scare me into changing my domain name registry: “You must renew your domain name to retain exclusive rights to it on the Web, and now is the time to transfer and renew your name from your current Registrar to the Domain Registry of America. Failure to renew your domain name by the expiration date may result in a loss of your online identify…”

I went to the Web site given in the letter: http://www.droa.com to find that the company offers “free” Web hosting for the lifetime of your domain. Free indeed! You can register your domain for only $30 for a year, with the rate adjusted to save if you sign up for three to five years. It is a scam. A scam that 50,000 Canadians fell prey to in 2003.

I learned from The Register that following an investigation by The Federal Trade commission, Domain Registry of America based in Ontario, Canada, was prohibited from making misrepresentations in the marketing of its domain name registration. Well DRoA is up to its old tricks and they obviously have my address.

There is no need for me to renew my domain name, and certainly not with DRoA. I have a Geocities Web site hosted by Yahoo. I pay a small monthly fee, but you can build a Web site for free through Yahoo with no need to pay for registering the domain name. Other sites offer similar free sites. I have no intention of switching. But this trick probably works quite well with people who have no clue how the Domain Name System (DNS) works.

DRoA have been fooling people since at least 2002, as the Domain Registry of America, of Canada, of Europe and of Australia. They’ve also used the names Yellowbusiness.ca, Internet Registry of Canada, Domain Registry Services, and Registration Services Incorporated. There is even a site dedicated to “inform internet users of the continuing saga of ‘Registration Services Incoporated'”.

According to the site this company first started sending out fake domain renewal letters to domain holders, using information illegally harvested from various WHOIS databases (mainly the Tucows OpenSRS database) in 2002.
The DRoA Web site lists contact addresses for them in North America, England, and Australia.

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