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Consumer Alerts

Learn more about scams involving Australian domain names and protect your valuable Internet presence investment.

Domain name scams

When your .AU domain name licence falls due, a renewal notice will be forwarded to you by our office. Domain Registration Services' customers should be vigilant and wary of responding to anything that resembles an invoice that is not generated by our company. 

In the past, a party with no connection to our company whatsoever has sent mass scam mail-outs to .COM.AU registrants in an attempt to solicit .COM.AU or .NET.AU registration business. 

Many people were tricked by the scam and allowed their Australian domains to be transferred from our services and other registrars to the party in question without being aware that was what they were doing.

The auDA, the Australian body vested with the responsibility of operating and overseeing the .au extension and .au registrars, and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) took legal action against the company on the basis that the representations were false, and were therefore misleading and deceptive, in contravention of section 52 of the Trade Practices Act 1974.

While that company is no longer in operation, we still hear of cases from time to time where similar scams are used - so registrants of Australian domains should always be wary of such communications.

For example, some of these companies send out unsolicited scam renewal notices up to 10 months before your domain name is due to be renewed.

Scams involving domains exist in other forms too.

Rogue registrars may send out requests for 'renewals' of domains the registrant does not have registered; so these in effect become new registrations of names similar or the same as the registrant's, but with a different extension.

Another scam is overseas registrars contacting Australian .COM.AU registrants stating a competing business is applying to register a domain name the same as the registrant's; but with an different extension; often relating to another country. However, this "competing business" is unlikely to exist and even if it did, the value of registering these domains will likely be minimal - and will cost more than if you register those extensions through the registrar of your choice.

Again, when it comes to your own Australian domain name, you should be extremely careful about how you renew it. If your name was registered through Domain Registration Services, renewal notices will be forwarded to you within an appropriate time frame and will not require your password.

Should you have any concerns about a letter, phone call or email you have received and would like to determine if it's a legitimate communication from our services; or a scam or fraud, please feel free to contact us.

If you believe you have received unsolicited marketing material with regards to your Australian domain name renewal, or been misled about it, you should also contact the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) 

The importance of correct and current contact details

There have been cases where registrants have lost their domain to a competitor due to not renewing their domain name licence. The cause? They did not receive renewal notices as their contact details were out of date. If your domain name was registered through our registrar service and you change your postal or email address, it is of critical importance that you update your details via our domain management interface. To update contact details for email or web hosting accounts, email support@domainregistration.com.au for precise instructions.

Domain name passwords (previously called Registry Keys)

A domain name "password" is the password or PIN number used to control access to changes in the operation and management of your name. It is issued by the domain name registry at the time the name is first registered.

The password can be used to:

Bogus "renewal advice" notices as detailed above also often imply that the registrant must supply their password in order to renew their domain name. Please note that this is NOT correct and is a flag that the "renewal advice" is indeed a scam.

Your registry key/password is NOT required if you renew your Australian domain name with the company currently listed with the registry as providing your services. 

Available Domain Name Search & Register

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How to register a name: Enter your choice in the search tool and click 'GO'. If after the check the domain names search results show your choice is available, you will then have the option to proceed to purchase registration; which is a very quick and easy process - start a search and find your ideal website address now.