Network Solutions Engaged in Front Running

January 8, 2008 · Print This Article

Domain front running is the “practice of stealing someone’s domain name search queries and registering the domain name before the original person can register it.” According to ICANN’s Security and Stability Advisory Committee (SSAC) they were not able to find any evidence that this practice exists, even though most domainers have experienced it.

Most registrar’s publicly state that they do not front run. However, Network Solutions really doesn’t care, and is now front running all domains that are queried on their website.

I gave it a try myself and looked up the domain name IAmADellCybersquatter.com at Network Solutions. Sure enough this was available. I then went to register it at Moniker, and was told that it was not available. I looked up the whois and the registrant is “This Domain is available at NetworkSolutions.com.”

So, there you have it – Network Solutions admitting to being a Dell cybersquatter.

In short, avoid Network Solutions like the plague. They have always been one of the most expensive in the industry, and now they are domain front running.

Comments

13 Responses to “Network Solutions Engaged in Front Running”

  1. NetworkSolutions Scandal: Hijacking User Domain Searches on January 8th, 2008 4:37 pm

    […] been announced by other domain industry blogs: Conceptualist, Elliot’s Blog, Dominik Mueller, DomainBits and hopefully more will follow […]

  2. NetworkSolutions Scandal: Hijacking User Domain Searches | DomainBusiness.cc on January 9th, 2008 3:28 am

    […] been announced by other domain industry blogs: Conceptualist, Elliot’s Blog, Dominik Mueller, DomainBits and hopefully more will follow […]

  3. Blackhat SEO » Blog Archive » Network Solutions is evil on January 9th, 2008 1:11 pm

    […] after availability lookups, follow-ups on Conceptualist, Elliot’s Blog, Dominik Mueller, DomainBits DotSauce. The only thing I have to say is that this is utterly ridiculous. Not to mention that […]

  4. Jake on January 10th, 2008 9:56 pm

    yeah – good find.

    Ntwk Sol. is annoying. I once saw one of their VP’s on MSNBC (or similar cable news show) explaining what SEO is. Silly people. I’ll avoid them.

  5. admin on January 10th, 2008 10:11 pm

    @Jake – Yes, I don’t think any serious domainers use Network Solutions. They survive because they seem to be the default registrar for people and companies who own only 1 or 2 domains.

  6. Sylvain on January 13th, 2008 8:54 pm

    They now seem to have reverted to even more despicable practices.

    I have searched for IAmADellCybersquatter.com, IAmAJerkoff.com and WeAreScamArtists.com and they all became unavailable to be registered from another registrar but no whois information is available.

    It’s as if the domains were not registered but they are not available to be registered.

    They should have their accreditation removed. They are nothing but Scam Artists.

  7. admin on January 14th, 2008 12:16 am

    Hi Sylvain – I checked whois.domaintools.com and I can see their whois information. I notice that domaintools says they own about 24,003 other domains – that’s a lot of domains to hold hostage!

  8. Dave Zan on January 28th, 2008 3:17 am

    that’s a lot of domains to hold hostage!

    Forgive me but…holding hostage things users don’t own to begin with?

  9. admin on January 28th, 2008 10:02 am

    Hi Dave – “hostage” is perhaps a strong choice of words. But Network Solutions essentially created a situation in which they had a 5-day monopoly on the domain names – by holding the domain names hostage. I’m not sure whether consumers own the domains already is really relevant.

  10. Paul Schellenberg on March 12th, 2008 2:20 pm

    I mistakenly did a search on Network Solutions and had my available site stolen by them as well. This shakedown and money grab should be illegal. Is there anything that can be done? ICANN should revoke their ability to register names at the least.

  11. admin on March 13th, 2008 11:31 am

    Hi Paul – there is a class action against them:
    http://sev.prnewswire.com/computer-electronics/20080225/LAM06125022008-1.html
    You may want to contact the law firm involved to find out how to join.

  12. 111 of the Most Important Spinns on Sphinn on May 21st, 2008 1:45 pm

    […] Network Solutions is Going to Scam Sphinn […]

  13. Interview of Larry Kutscher, CEO of Register.com on Front Running by Network Solutions : Domain Bits on July 7th, 2008 8:34 am

    […] discussed in a recent post that Network Solutions had started front running domains. To gain more of a perspective on the issue, I spoke with Larry Kutscher, CEO of Register.com, a […]