Domain Name Theft, Fraud And Regulations
Date: Tuesday October 01 2002, @03:36AM
Topic: Registrars

AF writes "Prof. Rod Dixon, author of Cyberlaw and Internet, has an article at CircleID discussing Domain Name Theft, Fraud And Regulations."

Dixson says: "With the number of businesses newly operating in the current namespace, it is increasingly important to focus on systems and policies that must be in place to deter the theft of domain names and domain name services. There is still abundant evidence that there are inadequate procedures in place to ward off domain name theft. Web bandits steal domain names by presenting fake requests to domain name registrars, who, upon receiving the request, transfer the domain name registration over to the individual named on the form.

What are the remedies with regards to fraudulent attempts of domain name transfers? "

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Re: Domain Name Theft, Fraud And Regulations
by fnord ( on Tuesday October 01 2002, @07:07AM (#9471)
User #2810 Info
Do you mean their Board Members? -g
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Re: Domain Name Theft, Fraud And Regulations
by fnord ( on Tuesday October 01 2002, @07:42AM (#9472)
User #2810 Info
Some web-bandits have figured out how to get a domain transferred from one registrar to another, indeed they sometimes transfer/launder it through a number of registrars so that sorting out the whole mess can take a great deal of time and effort. As the interim and final registrars stand to gain no money from sorting it out, there is little incentive for them to do so promptly, if at all. I don't see what policy ICANN could come up with to deal with this, although it is in registrars' best interests to craft their own mechanisms, and has been the subject of some discussion. I hesitate to wish for ICANN proper having some say over what registrars may come up with. This is one issue where solutions found may be in the common self interest of both registrars and registrants, the less that ICANN gets involved with it, probably the better it would work.

I'd also be hesitant to use as the poster kid for this, it happened a long time ago, it was done, atypically as noted, by someone who knew the registrant, and it was done by a convicted felon who was able to forge a signature (such things happen in the real world too, that may or may not be due to NetSol's then standard of care).

ICANN has also shown with its continuing (and with the WLS, now institutionalized) OK of re-registration of expired names to others that it has little standard of care for the prior 'owners'. Theft of names by that method is far more widespread than through the methods covered in the article, it is far easier, it is apparently legal, and it generally results in more profit for the perpetrator. As ICANN acted directly in opposition to existing registrants' interests (and a near consensus of others) with the WLS, what makes anyone think they would, could, or should be trusted to deal with cases of criminal fraud. -g

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Re: Domain Name Theft, Fraud And Regulations
by fnord ( on Tuesday October 01 2002, @05:39PM (#9490)
User #2810 Info
See some of my links elsewhere on this thread and under the subsequent item. Some Afilias Directors used their ICANN accredited (TM pending) registrar arms to offer exclusive or near exclusive queues to certain individuals (including those who have previously, and subsequently, lost names under the UDRP). Do you think they gave these slots and then domain names to registrants for the normal fee? Of course not. So there was a disincentive to run a fair process (indeed a number of them, and some of them continue, will there be a LandRush3? LR4?). I suspect that some of these instances might approach the level of criminal fraud in their various jurisdictions. Great show you're running here ICANN. -g
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