Scam Alert: Domain Name Expiring

I can’t believe we are not even a week into the New Year, and the scammers are already out in force! One of our clients recently had a message posted on their website, which I will paste below — I have changed the website name because I haven’t cleared this with them yet, but I wanted to get the warning out there as quickly as possible — everything else is as written:

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Notice#: 491343
Date: 2021-01-04

YOUR IMMEDIATE ATTENTION TO THIS MESSAGE IS ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY!

YOUR DOMAIN businessname.com WILL BE TERMINATED WITHIN 24 HOURS

We have not received your payment for the renewal of your domain businessname.com

We have made several attempts to reach you by phone, to inform you regarding the TERMINATION of your domain businessname.com

CLICK HERE FOR SECURE ONLINE PAYMENT: http://yourdomainfavourite.xyz/?n=businessname.com&r=a&t=1609666227&p=v1

IF WE DO NOT RECEIVE YOUR PAYMENT WITHIN 24 HOURS, YOUR DOMAIN businessname.com WILL BE TERMINATED

CLICK HERE FOR SECURE ONLINE PAYMENT: http://yourdomainfavourite.xyz/?n=businessname.com&r=a&t=1609666227&p=v1

ACT IMMEDIATELY.

The submission notification businessname.com will EXPIRE WITHIN 24 HOURS after reception of this email

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Sounds pretty important, and urgent, doesn’t it?

The problem is that the domain name had already been renewed, so the scammer is not even checking their facts before pasting the messages.

Telltale sign number one — the website address in the message was http://yourdomainfavourite.xyz, which is a legitimate address, but you can see that it is http://, and not https://, so it is not secure. No legitimate domain registrar would be using a non-secure website.

For the record, the IP address they used to post the message, 185.145.37.63, is bogus, and if you click on the links, which are real, they are redirected to another website, which consists of one page, and a payment link:

You can tell that this website is legitimate, because it has, not one, but four SSL certificate notifications! Can’t get any safer than four SSL certificates on one website, right?

But check out the pricing — only $US86 for one year, but a very generous $US449 if you are gullible enough to sign up for ten years, which is only $US45 per year!   🙂

People, don’t fall for this scam, this is one of the oldest scams around, but every year so many people fall for it because of the supposed urgency, and the threat of losing their precious website!

The reality is that your domain registrar will give you at least a month’s warning when the renewal is getting close, and most will give you between 30-60 days’ grace after the domain name expires before they cancel the domain name. So if you get one of these ‘warnings’, either by email, or by a posting on your website, ignore it and check your renewal date with your registrar for yourself. Recently we have seen both emails and website messages being used.

For the record, we renewed this client’s domain name for them through NameCheap for around $US10, a long way away from $US86!   🙂

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