May 31, 2012

Protecting Your Corporate Brand Online - International Domain Names (spam/scam email)

It seems every week another client emails us with a similar concern after getting this  (type of) email: 

Dear CEO,
We are the department of registration service in China. we have something need to confirm with you. We formally received an application on December 29th, 2011, One company which self-styled "Indian_____Inc." are applying to register "ABCcompany" (your company name) as internet brand and CN domain names as below : -- -- -- (yada yada yada......etc)

After our initial examination, we found that the internet brand applied for registration are as same as your company’s name and trademark. These days we are dealing with it, hope to get the affirmation from your company. If your company and this"Indian______________ Inc"as the same company,there is no need reply to us,We will accept their application and will register those for them immediately.
If your company has no relationships with that company nor do not authorized,please reply to us within 7 workdays,if we can't get any information from yours over 7 workdays,we will unconditionally approve the application submitted by "Indian_________Inc".
Thanks for your cooperation.


Based on our experience (since 1999), it's Spam/Scam. We ignore these types of emails, and Cole WebMarketing does get them from time to time. The email is basically the same for all the others we've seen, just the "are applying to register "ABCcompany" as internet brand" changes to match our client's domain name. Feel free to dig into this more, but all my other clients ignored this like we did.

An email of this type makes no sense! Anyone can register ANY domain name they want that's available, such as (for Germany). Of course, they would be risking major legal troubles and HUGE fines if it's obvious they tried to profit by diverting YOUR business to their website/company by using the same domain name. Pepsi wouldn't dare register for example...and they'd be crazy to set the domain to "auto-redirect" to!
"PRIMARY" DOMAINS - .com, .net & .orgI suggest to all my clients to go ahead and register both .com and .net if both are available. You should also get .org if you really want to protect your brand. It's a cheap way to avoid major headaches in the future. You'll have all 3 "Top Level Domains" and these 3 are the most valuable to have.  Most of the other domains are "country specific", like .de, .ru, etc. or .co (worldwide) and considered not much of a concern to most businesses that are "domestic only".

If a company is a Fortune 1000 or has a branch overseas, does a big chunk of business in a foreign country, or views international expansion as possibly part of their long term business strategy, then it would be advisable to have (mulitple) international domains.

For the rest of us (targeting local/regional/national USA markets only), .com (and .net & .org) is all that most of us need.


Cole WebMarketing, based in Charlotte, North Carolina, serves clients nationwide and offers Domain Name Registration Services along with our Website Hosting Services.  If you would like us to register additional domains on your behalf (you or your company own the names, we simply manage them for you), please call us at 704-456-9321 or visit to learn more.

DISCLAIMER: Having said all this - I'm not an international corporate attorney or other type of lawyer, I'm an internet marketing consultant, so this blog post is not intended to provide any type of legal business advice.