Domain crime : Expired and dropped #domains in the hands of credit card phishers

Domains that drop or expire and become available for a small fee, often get picked up for their existing traffic.

In the past, such pickups were made by domain investors, who’d park the domains with related keywords, earning PPC revenue.

Domain parking has suffered big blows in the past decade, and now these domains are picked up by scammers and phishing scheme operators.

According to security expert, Brian Krebs, formerly active “mom and pop” web sites are being targeted by scammers who pick up these domains and set up their trap.

Says Krebs:

“If you own a domain name that gets decent traffic and you fail to pay its annual renewal fee, chances are this mistake will be costly for you and for others. Lately, neglected domains have been getting scooped up by crooks who use them to set up fake e-commerce sites that steal credit card details from unwary shoppers.”

Photography services domains, such as JulieRandallPhoto.com, become fake sale points seeking credit card transactions. Brian Krebs explains what to do:

“Giving up on a long-held domain name — particularly one tied to your name — is always a tough call, because you simply never know what it will be used for when it falls into someone else’s hands. If you’re on the fence about whether to renew a domain and it’s one of several you own, it may make sense to hold onto it and simply forward any incoming traffic to a domain you do want people to visit.”

A report about organized crime groups formed to siphon credit card data using such expired or dropped domain names can be found at the security analysis web site, Flashpoint Intel.


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