CAUTION: Letters or emails warning that your Domain Name is in danger of being lost or sold:
Here’s how it works: you may receive a letter by post or as email spam saying something similar to the following:
- Your domain name is about to expire.
- Your domain name is available.
- You must renew your name now or it will be lost.
- Failure to renew your domain name by the expiration date may result in a loss of your online identity, making it difficult for your customers and friends to locate you on the web.
- Some company overseas is trying to buy up domain names similar to your own. They’re warning you first as a “courtesy”, and if you reply they’ll offer you first chance on a range of domain names.
If you receive a renewal notice: first, check it comes from the company you bought the name from. If you are not sure, call the company you bought your domain name from.
If you receive a domain name available notice: Look at the domain name carefully. Is this your domain name? Usually these letters or emails offer you another extension of your domain name at a HUGE cost. If you are not sure, call the company that looks after your domain name.
If the letter is not from the company that looks after your domain names it is probably just an ‘advertisement’ to persuade you transfer management of your domain name to the sender or they are trying to get you to pay an exorbitant fee for something you don’t need ! The problem is that many of these advertisements do not look like an advertisement; they are worded to scare you into thinking that if you do not pay the sender (by credit card) immediately then your domain name will be lost.
Instead, check with the company you bought your name from and ask them their process for renewals. Most reputable companies will contact you at least 30 days before your domain name actually expires.
Here are some tips to help you avoid being scammed:
- Keep track of all your domain name records- Print out and keep any records that pertains to your domain name and the company that manages your domain. The internet can be a confusing place and because there a lot of different elements to running an online business, people often lose track of where their domain name is.
- Keep your contact information up-to-date- At GCweb.com.au, we will do everything in our power to get in contact with you when your domain name is due for renewal. If we do not have your correct details then this makes our job impossible.In many cases, registrars will only email you when your domain name is up for renewal. If this information is not up to date, there is a chance you will not receive these reminders.
- Read the fine print- If you get one of these letters, or emails, and you’re not sure who it’s from, read the fine print carefully. If the letter mentions anything about “transferring and renewing” or “transferring your domain name” then you can rest assured this is not your hosting company.
- Do not send money to a company you have never heard of - A huge number of domain owners send money to domain scammers without question, even though they have never heard of the company requesting payment.
If you are unsure about anything you receive in the post or via email regarding your domain name, always contact the company you originally purchased through. They will help answer any questions and alleviate any fears you have about losing a vital aspect of your company.