Guest Post: Saga of a Stolen Domain Name and How it Was Recovered
This is a guest post written by Name.com Community Evangelist, Jared Ewy. This article discusses the theft of DavidWalsh.name and how it was recovered.
At Name.com we like to take care of the customer. We know buying something online can sometimes feel like a lonely endeavor that ends with money dropping into the tinny nethers of the ‘net. Our goal is to make sure your experience is the exact opposite, filled with real, handmade help that leaves you knowing you’re not alone. When you buy something from us, or if you simply have a question about one of our products, we’ll take care of you. Many of the questions we get are simple enough to be handled in 140 characters or less. Sometimes they get fairly complex, and sometimes they lead to downright dramatic international capers. The latter would be the case of the missing domain DavidWalsh.name.
It seems impossible by now that someone wouldn’t know that David Walsh’s domain was stolen (check out our dramatization here).
From the time Mr. Walsh first Tweeted @namedotcom about his missing web address, to the time it was retrieved, the entire ordeal has been a primer on the power of social media. David Walsh shared with us this situation: his domain had been stolen and he was wondering if we could help him get it back. A few tweets later we had enough information to find the alleged thief in Ukraine. Meanwhile Walsh and his thousands of Twitter followers started trending the hashtag #FreeDavidWalshDotName. It was big and getting bigger.
We hadn’t planned on contacting the alleged thief, but it turns out he was more accessible than a certain other company’s customer service! Even more amazing, the alleged thief (he says his friend stole it using his account) used his actual phone number on the Name.com account that briefly held the stolen domain. After giving up on traditional means, Name.com Domain Operations Manager Scott McBreen decided to put some pressure on the suspected domain wrangler. With The Ukraine on speed dial, Scott was able to get the purported scofflaw to transfer the domain back to Name.com, where we were able to give it back to Mr. Walsh.
It was exciting and stressful. The domain had originally been held by GoDaddy before it was stolen and briefly registered with us, and then whisked off to 1and1. It seems the thief would have kept moving the domain around while sending cryptic ransom notes to Mr. Walsh if it hadn’t been for the heroics of our domain operations manager, Scott.
We’re happy to have helped get the domain back. Customer service defines us as a company… it’s what we do here. In our spare time we’re obsessed with Twitter and Facebook. If you leave a comment, we’ll get back to you. With a situation like Mr. Walsh’s we felt a little like the Blues Brothers and on a divine mission to make the situation right (and if you don’t get that reference then stop what you’re doing and educate yourself with the Aykroyd/Belushi classic.)
In the end everything worked out. David Walsh got his domain back, Scott has been enshrined on Twitter as a legend, and we have this opportunity to remind you that most all Ukrainians are good people. In light of all this we’re celebrating with the promo code “DAVIDWALSH”. Use it to get $7.25 COM/NET transfers in and $6.99 .NAME transfers. All of your transfers to Name.com include a year of registration.
If you’re looking for a domain registrar with world-class customer service and people who strive to simplify hosting, web sites and SEO, then you’ve found your place. If you need any more info just hit us on Twitter @namedotcom for Facebook.com/namedotcom.
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