Cincinnati, OH (PRWEB) January 15, 2008
Last month, one of the Internet's leading domain registrars (a company who sells website names, like 'http://www.any-word.com') began 'locking' all available domain names that had been searched for from their website. They did this by automatically registering every searched domain name...providing their own company info as the new domain owner.
This kept the user from choosing to register the name at any other website, although the name would remain 'for sale' at the registrar until either bought by someone or after the five day hold was up. The registrar claimed that their intent was to "protect customers from front-runners" (front-running is a practice where an individual could obtain domain search records, register that domain name, and hold it for ransom).
Their plan backfired because these domains appeared in public lists as "recently registered". So while an unwary customer tried to find a good name for their website, the names they were speculating suddenly became public records. Any front-runners could then easily identify the ones worth registering (since someone had obviously shown interest in them). Front runners and cybersquatters could register those domains, and either keep them or offer to sell them for an inflated price.
After a severe public backlash, other registrars are keeping a safe distance from any such policy. For example, Paul Goldstone, founder of :DomainIt, publicly states that his search records are completely safe from this kind of invasion of privacy. "I can't control what other companies do with their users' information," says Goldstone, "but I can control what DomainIt does. When people search from our website, it's an act of trust...one we intend to protect."
Goldstone warns users that "there's just too much fraud and deception in the online world. It's important for anyone involved in e-commerce to look both ways before crossing the street, and proceed with caution. That's especially true for someone who wants to start their own website."
:DomainIt also offers other security features in their registration service like Whois Privacy to keep their customers' contact information safe from spam and identity theft. For more information, press kits, or interviews, contact Eric Engel at +1 866-296-2355.
Suggested Interview Questions:
*How do these public search records affect a person or business who wants to start a website?
*Was there a malicious intent behind the policy, or was it just an unforeseen mistake?
*Wasn't the 'on hold' policy created to make it harder for cybersquatters? Why didn't it work?
*Do people who already have websites need to worry about their contact information?
About DomainIt: DomainIt (http://www.domainit.com), founded in 1996, offers domain name registrations and management, email, website hosting, and online promotion. They provide secure and reliable services at competitive prices, backed by fast, friendly, and knowledgeable customer support.