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October 22, 2007


Sahar Sarid

For years Been using the excellent IWHOIS.com service, never had any problems.


Do NOT use HTTP (port 80) based WHOIS services.

Use the PROPER WHOIS service on port 43. Most WHOIS utilities automatically send the WHOIS query to the correct registry/registrar.

If you do a correct WHOIS query for a .com domain, the first query to Verisign REGISTRY will tell you the domain doesn't exist and you have no need to go to a Registrar WHOIS at all.

Pretty sure Windows has a WHOIS utility. Linux and Mac OSX certainly does. Just go to a terminal window and type "whois example.com" into it.


I don't think it was a coincidence! The same company, same phone number, same e-mail address, same Bahamas address...
And their own web page is very uninformative - only contains the line:
"We provide company service for China trade business opportunity!" and their name in English and Chinese.
And their same e-mail address - no further links...
The search was done through GoDaddy's Bulk Domain Purchase page, but the purchase not completed first time around.
That offer any clues?
Is there a "reverse who-is" (by registrant name, not ip address) readily public to see the domains they own? (And find out how many others they have procured by dubious means?)
Funnily enough, I tried reversewhois.com but it is already owned by a somewhat familiar company... ;)
Thanks for the feedback.



I too would like to think it is sheer coincidence, but I have been a victim of this sort of sabotage from registrars. In a particular situation, the registrars' interface indicated that I had successfully registered the domain, only to be informed later that it was not the case. Upon further investigation, it was clear that the domain had been registered by an affiliate of the registrar on the same day.
Go figure,or better yet welcome to domain landrush-where the end justifies the means. That is, if you're a registrar.

Bill Henson

Tim, give it a few days and take a look at the names again. Chances are the Taster will let them drop if they don't produce.

Patrick McDermott


There are several notorious Tasters. Since you didn't say who regged "your" domains I can't say if it's any of the ones I am familiar with.

From experience,if you check the domains in 4 or 5 days ,they will in all likelihood be dropped- unless they are getting traffic.

Do not check using a Registrar.

And certainly do not contact them.

I personally like iwhois.com as I have not experienced domains being "swiped" when I use it.

And frank, he said both domains were regged by same entity.

Unless these were recent drops no way it's a coincidence. imho

Good luck, Tim.



ICANN's Security and Stability Advisory Committee (SSAC) have just today released an advisory on this very thing...


I suggest you report your complaint to them, as they ask within the advisory. They give an email address.


Thanks to all - Ted, Drewbert, Patrick, Sahar, Bill & of course, Frank.

I deliberately did NOT mention the name before to let this ride without prejudice!!! I suspect (perhaps wrongly, but...) that the name may ring a bell (now, or soon...)

Anyway, in the interests of full disclosure... The company is:

Wan-Fu China, Ltd. (BRAIN-FRIED-COM-DOM)
P.O.Box CB-11901

In this case, the name I tried was (obviously) brain-fried.com (it was late, I was tired...)

The other name in question, registered by a partner a little over a week ago, was kingwilly.com. OK, a play on words, but, he is also English and thought that it would be fun when Prince William became king.

Anyway, I will scroll back through the other names I checked on, but did not buy, and see if Wan-Fu shows up again!!

Perhaps I will find my CSI-overtime mind was unreasonably doubting a 1-in-100 millin chance double name grab!!!

Thanks again to all.



So typical of ICANNt to over-complicate an issue, set up some committee advisory, waste a lot of time, and end up ignoring any problems other than those that concern how to put money in their own pocket.

If they really really wanted to know how these "front-runners" or "swipers" were doing the whois monitoring, they'd just ask a couple of the registrars they have under their meaningless accredation badges.

Might I suggest they check with the Oversee boys about Chesterton Holdings, or maybe the top cybersquatting crew over at Domain Doorman et al?

Nevermind, ICANNt has all the stats. They know who the tasters/front-runners are already. I'm sure they'll shut down the practice as soon as they can figure out how to not lose their 22 cent payoff in the process.

Crystal L. Cox

This Happened to me last august, I went in to my godaddy account, and picked a list of real estate names for a new listing I got. My credit card would not work. A few hour later someone else had registered the name and I lost it forever. I too had heard not to even look for the name if I was not ready to buy, but this happened to me on accident, the name was idahoRecreationProperty.com and it was not a coincedence. I now have the .net

Crystal L. Cox

Thank You, after carefully reading the comments about tasters, i went back into godaddy tonight and bought the name, they had let it drop, thanks - that is an important name to my business.

Associated Domains

That's too bad that you had this experience. I think next time around you should just register the domain outright and not wait to think it over its viability/usefulness. It only costs some $10 to register a domain for a year and you have 5 days to mull over it's viability/usefulness after you've registered the domain before cancelling the order. I believe that most registrars offer this 5-day cancellation service.

Sure, it can be a hassle if you register many domain names but certainly beats losing them to a thief!

Blue Bandit

It is sad, but those that mainly participate in this practices are those with the money and the resources... coming to the realization that only those entities with both of those are doing this... my belief is that it is being done by those who shouldn't be doing it... an INSIDE JOB... those big companies that you see and sit next to at the domain conferences.


Interesting posts. I've also been a "victim" of this crap. What I find amusing at least in my case is that when I went back this next day to register the names I though to myself either I'm on crack or I can't spell:)


Frank and Tim,

I too have experienced this using two different accounts and two different boxes. I always suspected it, but never wanted to believe it. Although it is still unverified I recommend we be suspicious.

Furthermore, I like to use bulk registration or whois checkers. I do not believe DomainTools or BetterWhois offers these. If they did, I would rather use them. I am always weary of using the Registrars bulk whois.


Bill Henson

And, a late entry. Great thread BTW. In Domaintools, Domain Search, use your "wildcard" and narrow your search so as to include everything before and after what you're really looking for. If your name is taken, it'll show up.

Brain-Fried.com? Definitely not a coincidence.

Regged by Wan Fu China? All uncertainty removed!

Here is a (incomplete) list of some of the top Domain Tasters;

Belgium Domains

Maison Tropicale S.A.

Maltuzi LLC

Wang Lee Domains Ltd.

Wan-Fu China Ltd.


And some distressing news, I think.

Came across this on today's edition of DomainNameNews:

"According to sources, Verisign, the operator of the generic TLDs .COM & .NET registry, is considering selling access to selected root dns server lookup data to registrars."

Full story here:

Now for a real coincidence. There is a similar discussion on Domain Spying and
Theft going on over at DailyDomainer:




You may all find the recent SSAC report on domain name front running interesting.


I thought all the domain name frontrunning happened in the Champagne Room.

***FS*** Those were 'break-out sessions' ;)


Guess I touched a nerve with this topic, and really appreciate the feedback. Figured it was more than coincidence, and appreciate the tips and other stories - as well as the warnings!!!
I know brain-fried.com was a stretch for a name, but thought of a use and hence went back to search and buy. Of course, it also sums up the way I felt at the time! Thanks Patrick!

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