Scamming for Dollars: Domain Name Registration Ploys - BodyShop Business

Scamming for Dollars: Domain Name Registration Ploys

How do you know what to do when notices about needing to renew your website domain come in? Know the facts. Where is your domain actually registered? If you don’t know, you need to find out.

Such a deal! Today I received a very official-looking notice, by mail, that my website domain was coming up for renewal. The company that sent this to me was Internet Domain Name Services, or iDNS. The registration for my domain,, was about to expire at the end of June and, according to them, I needed to take action. This notice had big bold lettering at the top that read, “Domain Name Expiration Notice.” In the middle of this notice were the pricing plans. At the bottom, it had a tear-off section to submit the renewal. It was “recommended” that I renew for at least two years, but if I renewed for five years, which was what they described as the “best value,” I could “save” $45! Wow, where do I sign up?

The problem is their one-year renewal cost, $45, is four-and-a-half times more expensive than where my domain name is currently registered. Their five-year plan, or “best value,” costs $180, yet my current service charges me only $60 for the exact same thing. If I had fallen for this ploy, this “best value” would have cost me an extra $120.

Send in Your Registration

I also received an email for another domain I own the rights to.

“This letter is to inform you that it’s time to send in your registration,” the email said. “Failure to complete your domain name search engine registration by the expiration date may result in cancellation of this offer, making it difficult for your customers to locate you on the web.” Oh no! Notice how they slipped in the term “search engine registration”? What a ruse! This was not a domain renewal notice, this was simply to “register” with search engines, which is basically done for free if you know what you’re doing. It’s deceptive and worthless and comes from an offshore source.

No Action Required

No doubt you’ve received similar notices about domain name expiration and “registration.” You’ve received them by mail or gotten emails and/or phone calls. Many of our clients who have received these notices have contacted us over the years, asking if they needed to do anything. Almost always, they require no action unless they’re registered by the actual service that has contacted them. It pays to educate yourself.

Legally, these companies are operating within the law. But that doesn’t necessarily make what they do right. They’re hoping that people are ignorant of the facts, not paying attention or scared by such an official looking “notice.” Who wants their website domain to go down? That would mean emails would go down, too. Can’t have that happen! “Better take care of this now while I’m thinking of it,” some people say.

To be fair, the mailed notice says, “As a courtesy to domain name holders, we are sending you this notification of the domain name registration that is due to expire in the next few months. When you switch today to Internet Domain Name Services, you can take advantage of our best savings. Your registration expires June 30, 2018. Act today!”

Later in the notice it says, “You are under no obligation to pay the amounts stated below, unless you accept this offer. This is not a bill, it is rather an easy means of payment should you decide to switch your domain name registration to Internet Domain Name Services.” But this is the fine print, and the rest of the solicitation is skillfully crafted to draw your attention and make you think this is an actual bill. Even the company name seems official. It’s bordering on being deceptive, yet their lawyers have wordsmithed it in such a way to keep them out of legal jeopardy.

What to Do

How do you know what to do when these notices come in? Know the facts. Where is your domain actually registered? If you don’t know, you need to find out. To find out where it’s registered, and to whom (hopefully you), visit Most of the time, your domain will be registered at places like GoDaddy, Network Solutions, ENOM, HostGator or some other large domain registration service.

The owner of the shop needs to own the rights to your domain name, not your developer or anyone else, such as an employee. It needs to be the owner. In addition, if you pay your registration services a little extra, you can have your registration information hidden from public view. This will cut down on getting these annoying and confusing solicitations and protect you from falling prey to their tactics.

You May Also Like

Are You Ready to ROCK in 2023?

Do you know a “rockstar” in the automotive aftermarket? Then it’s time to nominate them as a Vehicle Care RockStar!

Unless you have been on a remote desert island the past few weeks, you’ve likely seen some intriguing teasers for the latest brand launched under the Babcox Media umbrella — Vehicle Care RockStars. If you have seen it, I’m sure you’ve got some questions.

It can be tough to articulate exactly what defines a RockStar. Is it Mick Jagger’s swagger? Eddie Vedder joyously stagediving into a crowd? Eminem’s clever lyrical prowess or Beyonce’s ability to inspire viral TikTok dances? Elvis’ upturned lip? Is it Slash’s iconic top hat and leather jacket? Dave Grohl’s infectious anthems?

BodyShop Business 2022 Executives of the Year

This year’s Single-Shop award winner is Michael Bradshaw of K & M Collision in Hickory, N.C., and the Multi-Shop winner is Matt Ebert of Crash Champions.

Conducting Collision Business: It’s a New Day

The goal is not to declare war against insurers; it is to declare independence for your organization so that you’re able to provide the highest level of service to your true customers.

Don’t Be Quint: Embrace ADAS and Modern Vehicle Equipment

We can avoid a fate similar to Quint’s in the movie Jaws if we embrace ADAS, technology and training.

Welder Woman: Forging a Trail with Fire

Jaime Shewbridge is the first woman to have won the 2020 I-CAR Instructor of the Year award and the 2021 Welding Instructor of the Year award — and she’s not done yet.

Other Posts

It’s Time to Talk About Money with Young Body Techs

It’s time that we as leaders start to educate our young technicians on how to manage, grow and save money.

Boosting the Value of Your Business

If you have more than five years before you plan to exit your business, there are many things you can do to increase its value and decrease your asset gap.

Running a Family Collision Business: Stay in Your Lane

In a family business, it’s important to divide the duties and respect each other’s lanes.

Need the 411: What Should Consumers Do After a Vehicle Crash?

What do you do when consumers need info after experiencing a vehicle crash?