Like many of my readers here at the Make Money Online Zone, I have owned quite a few websites in my time. And as many of you honest people will also know, when you register for a website you need to supply various contact details. Unfortunately, not everyone in the world is quite so honest and as we know too well here, there are plenty of scams.
Today I want to bring something to your attention that could happen to anyone who owns or has ever owned a website. This is known as the domain notification scam and this affects many people, each and every month.
What Is The Domain Notification Scam?
This scam is sent via email and is designed to make you think one of two things. The email either implies that it’s time to pay your annual renewal fees for your domain. Or the email will suggest that it’s time to pay for submission to the search engines. These emails come in various different formats but generally look very basic in appearance.
Take a look at this example that I have just received from a very kind scammer.
Don’t Fall For This Email Scam!
Although most people are very careful these days when it comes to clicking links on emails. The whole reason that this scam is still active after several years is simply down to the fact that it works! People are fooled by these scams and the last thing you want to do is put your credit card details into the hands of a scammer!
In the above example, we can see that these guys are using a link to a website called “cenanhoca.com”. On visiting this website it turns out that this is a private tutoring website, written in Turkish. Unfortunately, my Turkish isn’t too hot, so I had to use google translate to find out what this site was all about.
This is not the first time that I have seen scams like this. Sometimes the scammer will use their own website to take payments, whilst other times they will create a portal via another site. In several cases that I have seen, the scam artist will use an account within a college or university website. It’s quite possible that the website in question may well have nothing to do with this scam. However, the truth remains that these emails are not legitimate! They have nothing to do with your domain name or search engine submission. In the example above it would seem that the main domain is advertising for private tuition. Notice how this person says they cannot answer the phone sometimes though. Not really what you would expect from a legitimate business. It’s quite possible that the creator of this website runs multiple scams through various websites.
Another Example From The Same Scammer
Generally speaking, these emails will either warn you that you are going to lose your domain name or the visitors going to it. They don’t give you long to respond, generally a day. They also make it sound like you need to pay for your search engine listing. This simply isn’t true! Here is another example of another similar scam. It is quite possible that both of these scams are created by the same people.
What To Do If You Receive One Of These Emails
If you receive an email that looks anything like the two shown here, my advice is to simply delete it or report it. These scam artists work in bulk numbers, they scrape the details of hundreds of website owners at a time. Unfortunately, there isn’t a lot that you can do to stop this. However, you can be clear on the facts that you need to know and there is a way to report the scammers.
You will never need to pay for your website to be indexed within the search engines. If anyone tells you otherwise, they are lying! There are services that exist that claim to index you into lots of different search engines, but there really is no need to ever pay for a service like that. You only ever need to pay the company that you have your domain registered with, you should be clear on who that is. You will no doubt be paying for a hosting service too, you should also be clear who that is.
The first thing that you should check if you receive an email like this is where it is linking to. If the URL does not link back to the company that you have your website registered with, then don’t trust it! Be extremely careful when following any links directly from emails. If you find something suspicious, my advice is to avoid clicking the link. Simply clicking the link on these emails can often send a signal to the scammer, letting them know that they have a legitimate contact with you. The scammer then knows that they can send you more emails!
How To Report Unwanted, Deceptive Or Scam Emails
If you receive one scam email, no doubt you will receive more! Here’s what to do to get back at those scam artists!
How To Run An Online Business Website Safely
We have another article that you might want to read if you would like further advice on Search Engine Optimization for your site.
We also recommend checking out Wealthy Affiliate for both building websites and hosting them.
Tell Us About Your Experience!
Do you have experience with the domain notification scam? Have you received a similar scam email? If so, we would love to hear from you! Please leave your thoughts and comments in the section below. By telling us about your experience you may well be helping someone else in the process. Thank you!