Domain Slamming: What it is, How to Protect Yourself - How You Can Protect Yourself
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Now that you know a little more about the transfer process, how can you protect yourself against slammers? Well, some of the advice from my earlier article about domain name hijacking certainly applies. Let me go over some points that should specifically help you concerning this type of scam.
First of all, keep good records. Know who your registrar is, and when your domain names are up for renewal. This way, if you receive any kind of communication boldly labeled “important notice” or “domain expiration notice” and you can see that it’s not from your registrar, you know you can throw it away. If you have any questions at all about a particular communication, you can check with your technical person, or contact your own registrar to ask about it.
I mentioned locking your domain in my previous article, but it bears mentioning again. While it won’t prevent your domain from being transferred in certain cases (Panix.com is one prominent case where a domain lock did not prevent a transfer), it works well most of the time.
If you’ve already been victimized, there are certain steps you can take. If you were just scammed, you should contact your current registrar as soon as possible and see if it can reject the transfer request. You should also contact your payment authority right away (your bank if you paid by check, or the appropriate credit card company if you used plastic). If they can stop the payment, the transfer will more than likely not go through. You also need to contact your web host to tell them what has happened, and that your domain name has been compromised.
Finally, you should report the incident to the appropriate authorities. These vary by country, though you should make a complaint to ICANN regardless since it’s the international authority. You’ll want to fill out ICANN’s Registrar Complaint Form, which is hosted at InterNIC. In the United States, if you received the fraudulent communication via snail mail, you can report it to the United States Postal Inspection Service by using its mail fraud complaint form. You should also contact your local attorney general and/or consumer protection agency. Domain slamming is a deceptive business practice, so you can and should also report it to the Federal Trade Commission.
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