Today is a good news story about auDA. Their Policy Compliance team led by Mark Bouck yesterday dealt decisively with some complaints about scammers. Whilst these concerns had been previously lodged, I figured that because of the ongoing changes at auDA, they might have fallen through the cracks. So I followed up Rachael Falk (Director Technology, Security and Strategy), and she got Mark straight on the case – with amazing results. Well done auDA!
These scammers use illicit identifier details (someone else’s identity / ABN) to purchase domain names on the expired auctions. They then immediately put up fake ecommerce websites. You know the type – the ones that sell shoes or sunglasses at impossibly discounted prices. auDA now has an acronym for these type of scammers – UBU’s (Unauthorised Business Use).
What makes it so obvious that these are scammers is when they use domain names that have no relation to the products they are ostensibly flogging. Scammers pick up these domain names because they previously had “traffic”.
Now In Policy Delete
Heaven only knows how many dollars this site has scammed from unsuspecting customers during this time – but at least it is gone now. Can you believe whose details these scammers used?
What’s even more worrying is this screenshot (below) from DomainTools. Look how many other domains are associated; and where the website is hosted.
Suggestion To auDA
The above scam website is just the tip of the iceberg. There are hundreds (if not thousands) of similar sites operating with impunity.
I have suggested this before, but I will suggest it again now. In the case of scam websites, no one wants to fill out a complicated “complaint form” which asks you to specify which policy is being contravened (see below). 🙁
auDA should have a dedicated email address that concerned cyber citizens of Australia can easily report suspect scammer websites. This should be advertised prominently on their website.
But in the interim, well done again. 🙂
Ned O’Meara – 18th May 2017