Most Popular Domain Name Scams, Part I

The summer domain sales lull is coming to an end and domain scammers are out in droves.

Have you received an offer on your domain that seems too good to be true? A WHOIS security email that seems slightly out of the norm? A message from your registrar asking to confirm a password?

Don’t fall for it! Follow this series to find out how to spot scam attempts, how to report them, and where to go for information on known scams.

In this first installment I’m going to cover one of the most well known schemes in the industry: the domain appraisal scam. Morgan has covered these since 2007 to remind new domainers to stay on the alert.

Here’s the basic domain swindle play-by-play

  1. A broker sends you what seems to be a normal offer for one of your domains. They may offer a large amount right off the bat. Otherwise they’ll probe a bit, asking if it’s for sale, if you have more domains, and if you’re an “experienced domainer.” Here’s one I’ve personally received:

    “Hello! I represent a businessman who needs to buy [removed].com for a new project.
    I located your contact information in a domain name whois lookup and understand that you own the domain name. Are you still interested in selling?I work for a hosting company based in UK. I help our clients to buy and sell intellectual properties.

    Do you have more names? Can you send a list? Are you an experienced seller?

    Best Regards,
    [Name Removed]
    Vice President
    [Company Removed]”

  2. After they’ve made some exorbitant offer to you between 5 and 6 figures, they’ll ask you for a “certificate” to prove its worth. The certificate is generated by a fake appraisal service for a nominal fee between to $49-$99 that the broker recommends, and will usually point to a fake blog post or thread that they’ve created.
  3. Once you pay for the appraisal and send the certificate to the “broker”, they will:
    • Claim their buyer is no longer interested
    • Say that you took too long
    • Want to wait 30-60 days for them to secure the funds to pay you
    • Simply disappear and never respond

Here’s how to easily spot them without even responding

  1. More often than not, anyone asking for an appraisal on your domain before buying it is a thief. If you really need an appraisal for some reason, get a free one from Estibot or appraise.epik.com
  2. The starting offer for your domain is exorbitantly high. Now I know some domainers think all their domains are premium, but most of us know the general ballpark someone will likely begin negotiations with. Not to mention that if your domain doesn’t usually field any offers, you should be a bit skeptical.
  3. The email’s domain is usually hosting related, riddled with dashes and several words, and registered recently. It will also usually forward to a legitimate company with a very similar domain when visited. Here’s a list of the offending domains compiled from Morgan’s past user comments and NamePros scam threads over the years to give you an idea (all the domains have expired, but they may be re-registered by the same scammer(s)):
    •  domain-hosting-shop.com
    • asp-hosting.org
    • asia-web-hosting.biz
    • php-mysql-hosting.info
    • net-hosting-solutions.com
    • go-appraiser.com
    • vip-hosting-server.org
    • web-hosting-clue.org
    • asp-net-hosting.org
    • asp-web-hosting.biz
    • solutions-web.info
    • best-unix-hosting-plans.com
    • cheap-web-hosting-search.com
  4. Here are scammer domains that are still active
    • lowcost-hosting.com (created two days ago)
    • 123-reg-domain-support.info (created in January and I personally received an email from it)
    • website-domain-hosting.com (created in May)
    • front-office-email-server.info (created in May)
    • network-host.org (created over a year ago)
    • internet-domain-investing.com (created in 2012)
    • cheap-web-hosting-search.com (created in 2012)
  5. They’ll always eventually link to threads in forums like “archive.answers-google.org…” or “answers.archive-google.com…” Within those threads they’ll link to “legitimate” appraisal services. However, if you check the links, the domain’s anchor text is always different than the actual link.
  6. The person’s name in their signature does not match the name in the email header.
    (I know some of you may want me to post the fake names and phone numbers used by these scammers, but this will only hurt those who legitimately have these names and numbers).
  7. The email usually contains spelling mistakes and poor grammar. You really can’t just chalk up someone’s typos to the combined effects of touchscreen smartphones and big thumbs!

Here are links to past reported domain appraisal scams uncovered by MorganLinton.com commenters and NamePros members

What you can do about it

  1. Comment on this article with the email address and message of any scam attempts you’ve received.
  2. Post a warning on NamePros with the same information alerting the domain community of fake domain appraisals.
  3. Send a message to the domain’s registrar abuse contact email found on its WHOIS info.
  4. Mark the message as spam in your email client.

It’s imperative that we shine a light on these scams and take action to help prevent future victims. It’s nearly impossible to catch these thieves, so our strategy should be to make their job as difficult as possible.

Stay vigilant and stay tuned for part II of this series covering phishing emails.

{ 25 comments… add one }

  • Anhell October 5, 2015, 10:15 am

    Yeah, I received one today. It is the spitting image of a scammer.
    Domain Name: 123-reg-co-uk.info
    Creation Date: 2015/09/10
    Scammer e-mail: support@123-reg-co-uk.info

    Hello!
    Our client is interested in purchasing XYZ.com
    He is a professional investor with 23 years of experience.
    I located your contact information in a domain name whois lookup and understand that you own the domain name.
    Are you still interested in selling?
    I work for a hosting company based in UK.
    I help our clients to buy and sell intellectual properties.
    Do you have more names? Can you send a list?
    Are you an experienced seller?

    Best Regards,
    Axxxx Bxxxx
    Vice President
    123 REG UK (Super Fake!!)

    Reply
  • JP Dallaire October 14, 2015, 7:00 am

    I dont have a website but i do own a domaine name.
    I received the exact dame e-mail from 123-reg-co-uk.info on octobre 12 2015. Support from Precious Seconds have been vert helpfull as they worn me that it was a scam

    JP Dallaire

    Reply
  • murali krishna October 24, 2015, 12:06 am

    I received an email from: support@123-co-uk.info, ON OCTOBER 12, 2015
    stating that
    Hello!

    Our client is interested in purchasing “ABC.in”

    He is a professional investor with 23 years of experience.

    I located your contact information in a domain name whois lookup and understand that you own the domain name.

    Are you still interested in selling?

    I work for a hosting company based in UK.

    I help our clients to buy and sell intellectual properties.

    Do you have more names? Can you send a list?

    Are you an experienced seller?

    Best Regards,

    Aaron Brown

    Vice President

    123 REG UK.
    ——————————————————————————————————
    I replied to him that :
    Hi, this is murli form XXXXXX. This is a reply to your mail regarding your enquiry on techapps.in domain name.
    Yes, I won this domain name “ABC.in” and i am interested to sell it.
    I have only this name available for sale and i don’t have any other domain names for sale.
    I am not an experienced seller, this is my first listing of a domain name for sale .
    If, you are interested to buy “ABC.in”, you can quote me a price.

    ——————————————————————————————————-
    Again he replied me stating that:

    The buyer is a well known Norwegian entrepreneur and businessman with interests in Internet, mobile phones, television, media, leisure and property.

    He offers $12,000.

    Do you have a certificate?

    He needs this for accounting/tax purposes.

    If you don’t have it’s not a problem. You can order it online.

    As a professional, he cannot accept it from any agency. Only manual service is accepted.

    The certificate must include the following:

    1. Independent valuation of the market price. It will show your domain name is not overpriced. On the other hand if the valuation comes higher, he will increase the price accordingly. In the domain name industry, there are many appraisal tools that people use to estimate the value of a domain name. My client does not want to risk and doesn’t accept services that use scripts. If you are unsure about some service feel free to ask me.

    2. Trademark infringement verification. It proves your domain has no trademark problems. He would like this verification to be included in the appraisal report. It’s not a problem because some companies include the TM verification for free.

    I’m also interested in a good estimate of the market price because he pays me % on each sale.

    You can read about certification agencies at http://archive.answers-google.org/answers/threadview/id/9356208.html (“Domain Broker” is my nickname).

    The process is very easy:

    1. Go to the certificate agency site and order a certificate. Just submit your domains and let them know you have a buyer with $XX,XXX offer. It will help you to get a better valuation.

    2. Send it to me and we will start the sale process. As soon as he receives your certificate he will buy your domain via an escrow service. Any escrow service will be able to pay you via Paypal, Wire, Western Union or any other method you prefer.

    He wants to ensure the safe delivery of the funds to you. Furthermore, since this is our first time conducting any business, I believe that using a third-party escrow service can provide a safe, well defined process.

    If you are new to the certification process, I can help you with the step by step instructions.
    ———————————————————————————————————————————
    Can any one say is this trustable or a SCAM.

    Reply
  • Edward Zeiden October 24, 2015, 12:11 am

    Murali,

    That message literally meets 100% of the requirements I noted above for being a popular appraisal scam. Operate with caution as it’s a scam.

    Hope this helps!

    Reply
  • Edward Zeiden November 3, 2015, 1:27 pm

    Here’s a new one:
    From: info@infocenter-tradera.info

    Hello!
    Our client is interested in purchasing [retracted].com for a new project.
    I located your contact information in a domain name whois lookup and understand that you own the domain name.
    Are you still interested in selling?
    I work for Tradera (owned by Paypal).
    I help our clients to buy and sell intellectual properties.
    Do you have more domains? Can you send a list?
    Are you an experienced seller?

    Best Regards,
    [retracted]
    Vice President
    Tradera
    [retracted]

    Reply
  • maskousko November 12, 2015, 5:12 pm

    I get a similar email today from domains@123-reg-support.info.

    Reply
  • kittu November 17, 2015, 6:20 am

    from : sales@123-reg-uk.co

    Hello!

    Our client is interested in purchasing [******].com.

    The buyer is an investor from Canada with $175,000 budget for different online projects.

    He is a professional investor with 18 years of experience.

    I located your contact information in a domain name whois lookup and understand that you own the domain name.

    Are you still interested in selling?

    I work for a hosting company based in UK.

    I help our clients to buy and sell intellectual properties.

    Do you have more names? Can you send a list?

    Are you an experienced seller?

    Best Regards,

    Roger Wahlberg

    Vice President

    123 REG UK

    Reply
  • Kevin Pirola December 9, 2015, 5:22 pm

    Received few minutes ago (10/12/2015) from “sales@123-reg-uk.co” (domain redirected to another web hosnting)

    Hello!
    Our buyer is interested in purchasing XXXXX.com for a new project.
    The buyer is a private investor from UK with a solid budget for several online projects.
    He is a professional investor with 26 years of experience.
    I located your contact information in a domain name whois lookup and understand that you own the domain name.
    Are you still interested in selling?
    I work for a hosting company based in UK.
    I help our clients to buy and sell intellectual properties.
    Do you have more names? Can you send a list?
    Are you an experienced seller?
    Best Regards,
    M*** D*****
    Vice President
    123REG

    After my reply i received a second email (just a bunch of seconds after my response):

    The buyer offers $15,000.
    Do you have a certificate?
    He needs this for accounting/tax purposes.
    If you don’t have, it’s not a problem. You can order it online.
    He needs it from a source he knows and trusts.
    The certificate must include the following:
    1. Independent valuation of the market price. It will show your domain name is not overpriced. On the other hand if the valuation comes higher, he will increase the price accordingly. In the domain name industry, there are many appraisal tools that people use to estimate the value of a domain name. My client does not want to risk and doesn’t accept services that use scripts. If you are unsure about some service feel free to ask me.
    2. Trademark infringement verification. It proves your domain has no trademark problems. He would like this verification to be included in the appraisal report. It’s not a problem because some companies include the TM verification for free.
    I’m also interested in a good estimate of the market price because he pays me % on each sale.
    You can read about certification agencies at http://archive.answers-google.org/answers/threadview/id/7928305.html (“Domain Broker” is my nickname).
    The process is very easy:
    1. Go to the certificate agency site and order a certificate. Just submit your domains and let them know you have a buyer with $XX,XXX offer. It will help you to get a better valuation.
    2. Send it to me and we will start the sale process. As soon as he receives your certificate he will buy your domain via an escrow service. Any escrow service will be able to pay you via Paypal, Wire, Western Union or any other method you prefer.
    He wants to ensure the safe delivery of the funds to you. Furthermore, since this is our first time conducting any business, I believe that using a third-party escrow service can provide a safe, well defined process.
    If you are new to certifications, I can send you step by step instructions.

    *******************************
    End of scam 🙂

    Good article

    Reply
  • Raniel December 27, 2015, 10:01 pm

    domains@123-reg-uk.co
    To: me
    Dec 20 at 9:22 PM
    Hello!

    Our buyer is interested in purchasing manualstoday.com for a new project.

    The buyer is a private investor from Saudi Arabia. He has $490,000 budget for 40-60 names.

    I located your contact information in a domain name whois lookup and understand that you own the domain name.

    Are you still interested in selling?

    I work for a hosting company based in UK.

    I help our clients to buy and sell intellectual properties.

    Do you have more names? Can you send a list?

    Are you an experienced seller?

    Best Regards,

    Robert Ferguson

    Vice President

    123 REG HOSTING

    http://www.123-reg.co.uk

    —————- Here’s there reply after I responded their first letter.—————————-

    Vice President
    To: me
    Dec 21 at 10:33 PM
    The buyer will pay you the appraised value. It will be fair.

    Based on my experience, I think your name is in $20,000 – $30,000 range for all three names and my client has enough funds to pay you this sum.

    Do you have a certificate of the appraised value?

    If you don’t have it’s not a problem. You can order it online.

    He needs it from a source he knows and trusts.

    I’m also interested in a good estimate of the market price because he pays me % on each sale.

    The process is very easy:

    1. Go to the certificate agency site (see instructions below) and submit your domain for the certification. Please let them know you have a buyer with $XX,XXX offer. It will help you to get a better valuation. In the comment field please ask them to guarantee that the appraised value will be higher than the appraisal service fee. In this case you will not risk to pay and get a low appraisal. I suggest you this company because they protect you as the seller from getting a low appraised value. They will send you the payment instruction only if your domain is worth $1000 or higher. Otherwise your request will be declined and you will not pay hem anything. Other companies does not offer this option.

    2. If your request will be approved, please pay them the fee and wait for 24 hours. Then send me the results via email and we will start the sale process. As soon as he receives your certificate, he will buy your domain via an escrow service. Any escrow service will be able to pay you via Paypal, Wire, Western Union or any other method you prefer.

    He wants to ensure the safe delivery of the funds to you. Furthermore, since this is our first time conducting any business, I believe that using a third-party escrow service can provide a safe, well defined sale process.

    The certificate must include only 2 things to be accepted by my buyer:

    1. Independent valuation of the market price. Only manual valuation is accepted. No valuations generated by scripts.

    2. Trademark infringement verification. It proves your domain has no trademark problems. He would like this verification to be included in the appraisal report. It’s not a problem because some companies include the TM verification for free.

    You can read about the recommended certification agency at Google Answers: http://archive.answers-google.org/answers/threadview/id/7018325.html (“Domain Broker” is my nickname there).

    If you are new to certifications, I can send you step by step instructions.

    ————————Third Reply——————————————-

    Vice President
    To: Me
    Dec 27 at 5:07 PM
    Ok. It’s very good they have approved your application. Please proceed with the payment to order the certification and keep me informed.

    ———————————————————————-

    Thank you very much for this blog. Hope this help you guys….

    Reply
  • Patti January 3, 2016, 10:08 am

    Received this on January 1, 2016 from domains@123-reg-uk.co]

    Hello!

    I represent an investor from Canada who needs traveltastrophe.com for his project.

    The investor would be prepared to pay a sum in $15,000 – $20,000 range.

    If you expect another figure, please specify it in the subject of your reply.

    What is your preferred payment method?

    If you have more names I can help you to sell them.

    Best Regards,

    Eric Danielsen

    Vice President

    123 REG

    On Jan 1, 2016, at 9:00 AM, Vice President wrote:

    My buyer offers $15,000 to secure the domain.

    Do you have a certificate?

    He needs this for accounting/tax purposes.

    If you don’t have it’s not a problem. You can order it online.

    As a professional, he cannot accept it from any agency. Only manual service is accepted.

    The certificate must include the following:

    1. Independent valuation of the market price. It will show your domain name is not overpriced. On the other hand if the valuation comes higher, he will increase the price accordingly. In the domain name industry, there are many appraisal tools that people use to estimate the value of a domain name. My client does not want to risk and doesn’t accept services that use scripts. If you are unsure about some service feel free to ask me.

    2. Trademark infringement verification. It proves your domain has no trademark problems. He would like this verification to be included in the appraisal report. It’s not a problem because some companies include the TM verification for free.

    I’m also interested in a good estimate of the market price because he pays me % on each sale.

    You can read about certification agencies at http://archive.answers-google.org/answers/threadview/id/8025361.html (“Domain Broker” is my nickname).

    The process is very easy:

    1. Go to the certificate agency site and order a certificate. Just submit your domains and let them know you have a buyer with $XX,XXX offer. It will help you to get a better valuation.

    2. Send it to me and we will start the sale process. As soon as he receives your certificate he will buy your domain via an escrow service. Any escrow service will be able to pay you via Paypal, Wire, Western Union or any other method you prefer.

    He wants to ensure the safe delivery of the funds to you. Furthermore, since this is our first time conducting any business, I believe that using a third-party escrow service can provide a safe, well defined process.

    If you need instructions how to obtain a certificate which will satisfy your buyer, I may send them to you.

    Reply
  • Scott C January 17, 2016, 4:12 pm

    Recently, I received a similar “offer to purchase” email like the others here did. This is the one I got originally:

    Hello!
    I represent an investor from Canada who needs http://my-15k-20k-domain.com/sedo for his project. The investor would be prepared to pay a sum in $15,000 – $20,000 range.
    If you expect another figure, please specify it in the subject of your
    reply.
    What is your preferred payment method?
    If you have more names I can help you to sell them.

    Best Regards,
    Eric Danielsen
    Vice President
    123 REG

    At first, I wasn’t sure about the legitimacy of this email. In fact, I actually discovered it in my Junk folder 2 weeks after it was sent. That’s probably where I should have left it in hindsight. I admit I bit into the “hook”, but, my domain experience still told me to be skeptical and do some research first.

    So, I told him I would be interested in learning more about his offer and to get back in touch with me. Then he sends me this:

    The buyer will pay you the appraised value. It will be fair since he does not want to pay something over the real market value.
    Based on my experience, I think your name is in $15,000 – $20,000 range.
    Do you have a certificate of the appraised value?
    If you don’t have it’s not a problem. You can order it online.
    He needs it from a source he knows and trusts.
    I’m also interested in a good estimate of the market price because he pays me % on each sale.
    The process is very easy:
    1. Go to the certificate agency site (see instructions below) and submit your domain for the certification. Please let them know you have a buyer with $XX,XXX offer. It will help you to get a better valuation. In the comment field please ask them to guarantee that the appraised value will be higher than the appraisal service fee. In this case you will not risk to pay and get a low appraisal. I suggest you this company because they protect you as the seller from getting a low appraised value. They will send you the payment instruction only if your domain is worth $1000 or higher. Otherwise your request will be declined and you will not pay hem anything. Other companies does not offer this option.
    2. If your request will be approved, please pay them the fee and wait for 24 hours. Then send me the results via email and we will start the sale process. As soon as he receives your certificate, he will buy your domain via an escrow service. Any escrow service will be able to pay you via Paypal, Wire, Western Union or any other method you prefer.
    He wants to ensure the safe delivery of the funds to you. Furthermore, since this is our first time conducting any business, I believe that using a third-party escrow service can provide a safe, well defined sale process.
    The certificate must include only 2 things to be accepted by my buyer:
    1. Independent valuation of the market price. Only manual valuation is accepted. No valuations generated by scripts.
    2. Trademark infringement verification. It proves your domain has no trademark problems. He would like this verification to be included in the appraisal report. It’s not a problem because some companies include the TM verification for free.
    If you are new to certifications, I can send you step by step instructions.

    Now I was REALLY skeptical, and it didn’t take long to find this website and others who have also been confronted by this scammer. Here’s the next email I sent him:

    Hello –
    I’ve decided to make this process even easier. All you need to do is click the link below and you can buy the domain right now. I’ve even reduced the price much less than your estimate. I’ve sold a lot of domain names, but, I’ve never had to pay for a certificate of estimated value and see no need for this extra cost. Once you click the link below, you can purchase the domain and the Escrow service will process everything.

    Thanks for your time and I look forward to doing business with you. By the way, what is your name and what company do you represent? Do you have a website? Thanks.

    All the best,

    [me]

    http://my-15k-20k-domain.com/sedo

    Then he sends me this:

    He cannot buy a non certified name. He won’t be able to send you the funds from his bank because the bank requires domain appraisal certificate.
    Only you as the owner can obtain the certification. It’s a standard practice. Professional investors won’t buy without it. It will increase the value of your domain and will become your own property. Sooner or later you will have to order it or you risk no to sell your domain.
    I understand your concerns and doubts. I talked to him and he confirmed his intentions. I give you 100% guarantee he will buy after you order the certification. I worked with him before. He is a reliable buyer.
    I’m also interested in finishing this deal because my service are paid by my buyers as % upon every domain sale.
    All my sellers who ordered certificates, sold their domains for very good money.
    Of course, you must be sure you will sell it for at least $15,000. To avoid any risks just contact the certification agency at Domain Words Contact Page

    Please let them know you have a buyer with $15,000 offer and need a valuation near this value. Ask them if it’s possible to certify the domain near this value or not. If it’s possible, please ask them to sen you the payment instructions. If it’s not possible you will not proceed with the payment. This way you will not lose anything.

    That’s when I decided I had had enough of this loser and sent him the following email:

    No wonder I found your email in my Junk folder. You’re a scammer. You get me to buy your ridiculous domain appraisal certificate and then disappear, never to be heard from again. Shame, shame.
    Take a look below at what I found online. It seems you’ve got a reputation and it’s NOT a good one. Go ahead, read it. Maybe you’ve seen it before.
    Here’s the deal. There is no deal. This conversation is over! You really should stop ripping people off. Scam artists like you give the industry a bad name. Try doing some good in your life for a change. There’s no future for liars and thieves who take advantage of others. In fact, the only purpose of your life right now is to serve as a warning to others. You can’t fake it to make it. You have to be real and authentic.
    That’s it. I’m done with you. You really need to get a life. But, first, read the article below. It’s all about YOU!

    YOU’VE BEEN BUSTED!”

    The article I sent him was this one, “Most Popular Domain Name Scams, Part I”.

    Thanks for the opportunity to post this here. It’s good to be aware!
    Scott C

    Reply
  • Michael K March 3, 2016, 7:57 am

    Got this email this week! I did my research before responding, offer appeared bogus from the start. It is fun acting as if I am trying to get the cert so I can sell for huge money!

    Return-Path:
    Received: from n1nlsmtp02.shr.prod.ams1.secureserver.net ([188.121.43.194]) by mx.mail.com (mxgmxus006) with ESMTPS (Nemesis) id 0Lusnn-1Zt4zZ1k93-01083l for
    ; Wed, 02 Mar 2016 19:15:12 +0100
    Received: from N1NW8SHG123 ([188.121.41.139]) by : HOSTING RELAY : with SMTP id bBIfayzZyxS9nbBIfaWQoB; Wed, 02 Mar 2016 11:15:05 -0700
    thread-index: AdF0r3I/4CRzQPzoRN6Kp/yk/E8Yhg==
    Thread-Topic: Offer to purchase xxxxxx.com
    From:
    To:
    Subject: Offer to purchase xxxxxx.com
    Date: Wed, 2 Mar 2016 11:15:05 -0700
    Message-ID:

    Hello!
    I represent an investor from the Great Britain who wants to buy xxxxxxxxxxx.com for a new project.
    I located your contact information in a domain name whois lookup and understand that you own the domain name.
    Are you still interested in selling?
    If you have more names I can help you to sell them.
    Best Regards,
    (removed)
    Vice President
    Intellectual Property Specialist
    1and1 UK Hosting Company

    Reply
  • Mr. B March 12, 2016, 12:14 pm

    Return-Path:

    Received: from n1nlsmtp03.shr.prod.ams1.secureserver.net (n1nlsmtp03.shr.prod.ams1.secureserver.net [188.121.43.193])

    Received: from N1NW8SHG123 ([188.121.41.139])
    by : HOSTING RELAY : with SMTP

    Thread-Topic: Offer to purchase domain
    From:

    Subject: Offer to purchase domain
    Message-ID:
    X-Mailer: Microsoft CDO for Windows 2000
    X-MimeOLE: Produced By Microsoft MimeOLE V6.0.6002.18463

    Hello!

    I represent an investor from Oxford, UK who wants to buy … .com for a new project.

    I located your contact information in a domain name whois lookup and understand that you own the domain name.

    Are you still interested in selling?

    If you have more names I can help you to sell them.

    Best Regards,

    Greg Galan

    Vice President

    Intellectual Property Sales

    Hostgator UK Hosting

    Reply
  • Rip June 6, 2016, 6:18 pm

    Are you an agent of Domain Services?

    It should be the buyer (or you) first to pay fees for the certificate. It´s his (or your) decision.

    He (or you) can later deduct that appraisal fees from the final appraisal value of my domain.

    Anyhow, nobody knows you at 123-reg.co.uk, probably because you use fake domain 123-reg-uk.co 😉

    So, if you don´t identify yourself….

    (me)

    This message contains confidential information and is intended only
    for the individual named. If you are not the named addressee you
    should not disseminate, distribute or copy this e-mail. Please
    notify the sender immediately by e-mail if you have received this
    e-mail by mistake and delete this e-mail from your system.

    E-mails are not encrypted and cannot be guaranteed to be secure or
    error-free as information could be intercepted, corrupted, lost,
    destroyed, arrive late or incomplete, or contain viruses. The sender
    therefore does not accept liability for any errors or omissions in the
    contents of this message which arise as a result of e-mail transmission.
    If verification is required please request a hard-copy version. This
    message is provided for informational purposes and should not be
    construed as a solicitation or offer to buy or sell any securities
    or related financial instruments.

    (me) reserves the right to retain all messages. Messages are protected
    and accessed only in legally justified cases.

    ———- Původní zpráva ———-
    Od: Domain Broker
    Komu: (me)
    Datum: 6. 6. 2016 11:40:19
    Předmět: Re: Offer to purchase xxx.com

    Our commission is 5% only. You will pay it after receiving the funds from the buyer. In order to earn a better commission I will do my best to sell your domain at the highest price possible.

    My buyer invests money in online projects. He buys 10-12 domains for each project to get the maximum traffic possible.

    The buyer will pay you the appraised value stated in an official certificate. He needs an independent expertise because you and me are interested in a high sale price and my buyer does not want to overpay. He also needs it for accounting and tax purposes. The buyer guarantees to pay you the price stated in your certificate.

    Based on my experience, I think your name is in $15,000 – $20,000 range.

    Do you have a certificate of the appraised value from an independent authority (not your broker or auction site)?

    If you don’t have it’s not a problem. You can order it online. I will suggest the best source when we can get a good valuation.

    The certificate will increase the value of your domain. It’s a must do if you wish to sell your domain to a professional investor with a good budget.

    The certificate must include only 2 things to be accepted by my buyer:

    1. Independent valuation of the market price. Only manual valuation is accepted. No valuations generated by scripts.

    2. Trademark infringement verification. It proves your domain has no trademark problems. He would like this verification to be included in the appraisal report. It’s not a problem because some companies include the TM verification for free.

    You can read about the recommended certification agency at Google Answers: http://answers-google.online/answers/threadview/id/6147028.html (“Domain Broker” is my nickname there).

    The process is very easy and will take only two minutes of your time:

    1. Go to the certificate agency site and submit your domain for the certification. Please let them know you have a buyer with $XX,XXX offer. It will help you to get a better valuation. In the comment field please ask them to guarantee that the appraised value will be higher than the appraisal service fee. In this case you will not risk to pay and get a low appraisal. I suggest you this company because they protect you as the seller from getting a low appraised value. They will send you the payment instruction only if your domain is worth $1,000 or higher. Otherwise your request will be declined and you will not pay them anything. Other companies does not offer this option.

    2. If your request will be approved, please pay them the fee and wait for 24 hours. Then send me the results via email and we will start the sale process. As soon as he receives your certificate, he will buy your domain via an escrow service. Any escrow service will be able to pay you via Paypal, Wire, Western Union or any other method you prefer.

    He wants to ensure the safe delivery of the funds to you. Furthermore, since this is our first time conducting any business, I believe that using a third-party escrow service can provide a safe, well defined sale process.

    If you are new to certifications or domain sales, I can send you step by step instructions. I will also help you during the whole sale process. You will be able to contact me at any time.

    On 06.06.2016 3:41, (me) wrote:
    Dear Rebecca,

    thank you for your email. I will think about it.

    What is the offer?

    Best wishes


    (me)

    This message contains confidential information and is intended only
    for the individual named. If you are not the named addressee you
    should not disseminate, distribute or copy this e-mail. Please
    notify the sender immediately by e-mail if you have received this
    e-mail by mistake and delete this e-mail from your system.

    E-mails are not encrypted and cannot be guaranteed to be secure or
    error-free as information could be intercepted, corrupted, lost,
    destroyed, arrive late or incomplete, or contain viruses. The sender
    therefore does not accept liability for any errors or omissions in the
    contents of this message which arise as a result of e-mail transmission.
    If verification is required please request a hard-copy version. This
    message is provided for informational purposes and should not be
    construed as a solicitation or offer to buy or sell any securities
    or related financial instruments.

    (me) reserves the right to retain all messages. Messages are protected
    and accessed only in legally justified cases.

    ———- Původní zpráva ———-
    Od: rebecca@123-reg-uk.co
    Komu: (me)
    Datum: 5. 6. 2016 0:32:10
    Předmět: Offer to purchase xxx.com

    Hello!

    I represent an investor from Canada who wants to buy xxx.com for a new online project.

    The buyer is a professional investor in Real Estate.

    Investing in web names is a new direction for him.

    I located your contact information in a domain name whois lookup and understand that you own the domain name.

    Are you still interested in selling?

    I work for a hosting company.

    I help our clients to buy and sell intellectual properties.

    If you have more names I can help you to sell them.

    Best Regards,

    Rebecca Kaufmann

    Domain Name Broker

    Reply
  • burak June 9, 2016, 2:40 am

    Here is another scammer:
    Sender email: rebecca@1and1-uk.info
    Below is the scammers email body:
    ——————
    Hello!
    I represent an investor from Canada who wants to buy I_REMOVED_MY_WEBSITE_NAME.com for a new online project.
    The buyer is a professional investor in Real Estate.
    Investing in web names is a new direction for him.
    I located your contact information in a domain name whois lookup and understand that you own the domain name.
    Are you still interested in selling?
    I work for a hosting company.
    I help our clients to buy and sell intellectual properties.
    If you have more names I can help you to sell them.
    Best Regards,
    Rebecca Kaufmann
    Domain Name Broker
    1and1
    ————

    Reply
  • Graziella Brincat August 9, 2016, 4:52 am

    Hi there,

    received this today from: stephanie@hostgator-smtp.info

    Hello!

    I represent an investor from Canada who wants to buy [domain name] for a new online project.

    The buyer is a professional investor.

    I located your contact information in a domain name whois lookup and understand that you own the domain name.

    Are you still interested in selling?

    I help clients of our hosting company to buy and sell intellectual properties.

    If you have more names I can help you to sell them.

    Best Regards,

    Stephanie Fenner

    Domain Name Broker

    Hostgator

    Just a heads up.

    Reply
  • Jsonny August 17, 2016, 8:40 am

    Hi there,

    Received this on Aug 16, 2016 from: stephanie@hostgator-smtp.info

    ——

    Hello!

    I represent an investor from Canada who wants to buy {Domain Name} for a new online project.

    The buyer is a professional investor.

    I located your contact information in a domain name whois lookup and understand that you own the domain name.

    Are you still interested in selling?

    I help clients of our hosting company to buy and sell intellectual properties.

    If you have more names I can help you to sell them.

    Best Regards,

    Stephanie Thompson

    Domain Name Broker

    Hostgator

    Reply
  • Khanh Nguyen August 25, 2016, 8:25 am

    Hello!

    I represent an investor from the Great Britain who wants to buy xxxxxx.com for a new online project.

    The buyer is a professional investor.

    I located your contact information in a domain name whois lookup and understand that you own the domain name.

    Are you still interested in selling?

    I help clients of our hosting company to buy and sell intellectual properties.

    If you have more names I can help you to sell them.

    Best Regards,

    Samantha Goldberg

    Reply
  • Maurice Connolly September 2, 2016, 10:04 am

    Hi,

    I have received a few of these emails this past week. One thing I noticed is that the domains targeted are those that I have recently listed on Flippa. I guess they think if you are actively listing a domain for sale that you may be an easier target.

    Reply
  • rg May 15, 2017, 6:14 pm

    They’re still out there doing this. I got one today 5/15/2017 see below. I reply asking them to make an offer and when they replied $85000.00 I knew it was a scam and then search and found this tread.

    Hello!

    I represent a buyer from Osaka who wants to buy XXXXXX.org for a new web project.
    I help VIP clients of our hosting company to buy names.
    Are you still interested in selling?
    The buyer is a professional investor with a good budget.
    I located your contact information via whois search.
    If you have more names please email me the list.
    Best Regards,
    Yoshihiko Kawanaka
    Vice President
    Investor Relations
    Heteml ltd.
    Hosting Company
    Tokyo, Japan

    Reply
  • Vince Logan May 21, 2017, 2:33 pm

    Just got one for Deadool.com. Sounded legit, because I am currently selling it. They offered a reasonable amount and I fell for the appraisal. 🙁 199. Crap. Now they want it to go through some shady “3rd party”. I said I deal with Sedo.com. I’ll let you know tomorrow.

    Reply
  • Nearly Scammed May 24, 2017, 12:08 pm

    Seems like heteml-jp.info is on a streak. I just received this today (Wed May 24, 2017):

    Subject: Offer to purchase .com

    Hello!

    I represent a buyer from Nagoya who wants to buy .com for a new web project.

    Are you still interested in selling?

    The buyer is a professional investor with a good budget.

    I located your contact information via whois search.

    I help VIP clients of our hosting company to buy names.

    If you have more names please email me the list.

    Best Regards,

    Narumi Fukuda

    Personal Broker

    HETEML

    Hosting Company

    Tokyo, Japan

    When I replied that I was interested (as at that point, I stupidly didn’t know it was a scam), they wrote back:

    Do you own “.net” extension? If it’s yours he would be interested in purchasing it too.

    Commission of our company is only 5%. It’s paid by the buyer.

    He will pay you via the Authorize Merchant Escrow service. They accept payment from his country and can pay you via wire, Paypal, check or any other method you prefer.

    The buyer offers a price in $15,000 – $20,000 range.

    Do you have a certificate? It’s required by his bank.

    The final sale price will depend on the certificate.

    If you don’t have the certificate it’s not a problem. You can order it online.

    Please note he cannot accept it from any agency. He needs a manual service. It also must be a third party independent agency (not your broker our auction site) and must be accepted by his bank.

    The certification includes the following:

    1. Independent valuation of the market price. It will show your domain name is not overpriced. On the other hand if the valuation comes higher, he will increase the price accordingly. In the domain name industry, there are many appraisal tools that people use to estimate the value of a domain name. My client does not want to risk and doesn’t accept services that use scripts. If you are unsure about some service feel free to ask me.

    2. TM verification. It proves your domain has no trademark problems. He would like this verification to be included in the appraisal report. It’s not a problem because some companies include the TM verification for free.

    You can read about certification agencies at http://answersgoogle.org/answers/threadview/id/70351682.htm (“Domain Broker” is my nickname).

    The process is very easy:

    1. Go to the certificate agency site and order a certificate. Just submit your domains and let them know you have a buyer with $XX,XXX offer. It will help you to get a better valuation.

    If your domain is worth at least $1000, they will send you the payment instructions. If it’s not possible, they won’t send you the instructions. This way you will not lose anything. It’s very convenient and gives you the full protection. Other services charge you upfront even if your domain is not worth spending the appraisal fee, so I don’t recommend them.

    2. Send the certificate to me and we will start the sale process. As soon as he receives your certificate he will buy your domain.

    If you are new to the certification process, I can help you with the step by step instructions.


    When I inquired further (out of curiosity, by this point I knew it was a scam), they wrote:

    Only you as the owner can certify it. They will verify you.

    My client borrows part of the funds in his bank to buy the domain and the bank requires the independent valuation of the domain name (appraisal) with the TM verification so it’s impossible for my client to proceed without it. The certification agency must be authorized by his bank.

    It’s a standard practice when you sell your domain to a professional investor.

    I talked to him and he confirmed his intentions o there is no risk for you. You can be sure he will buy after you order the certification. I worked with him before. He is a reliable buyer. The buyer guarantees to pay you the price stated in your certificate.

    Of course, you must be sure you will sell it for at least $15,000. To avoid any risks just contact the certification agency at Authorize Merchant Order Form

    Please send them your domain name and let them know you have a buyer with $15,000 offer and need a valuation near this value. It will increase your final appraised value. If your name is worthless and cannot be valued over $1000 they won’t send you the payment instructions. This is the only service that offers this option for customers so you will never waste money and time on appraisal of low quality names.

    Reply
  • Andre August 21, 2017, 12:02 am

    Hello!

    I represent a buyer from Nagasaki who wants to buy xxxxx.com for a new web project.

    Are you still interested in selling?

    The buyer is a professional investor with a good budget.

    I help VIP clients of our hosting company to buy names.

    If you have more names please email me the list.

    Best regards,

    Satoko Takigawa

    Vice President

    GMO Cloud Hosting Japan

    Tokyo

    26-1 Sakuragaoka-cho Cerulean Tower

    Japan

    Phone: +81 6763415714

    Reply
  • Kevin January 21, 2018, 7:50 am

    Hello!

    I represent a buyer from Japan who wants to buy attentioncoins.com for a new web project.

    I’ve found your address via WHO IS.

    My client is interested in purchasing your domain. If it’s still for sale please get back to me.

    He offers a good price. If it’s not enough please let me know.

    If you have other names please email me the list.

    Best regards,

    Narumi Yoshida

    Domain Broker

    X Hosting Solutions Japan

    Tokyo

    Japan

    Phone: + 81269817435

    Reply
  • G.S. February 27, 2018, 2:11 pm

    Add dns@heteml.info to your scam list

    Reply

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