Back in August 2014 I wrote an article about a company named New Ventures Services Corp and who they were. Long story short, New Ventures Services Corp, using NewVCorp.com is a subsidiary of Web.com Group, Inc.
They claim the subsidiary in this SEC filing in Exhibit 21.1 in which it states Web.com Group, Inc’s subsidiaries
Now that we are very clear that New Ventures Services Corp is owned by Web.com Group, Inc., the publicly traded company, let’s talk about one of its domain name registrars. Network Solutions, LLC, also clearly listed in the list above.
After I wrote my first article researching and connecting the dots, people constantly contact me. Network Solutions did this to my domain, they did that etc. Now, a lot of the time, the people did let the domain expire and it was very hard for them to renew it, based on what I was being told. I always helped when I could and often pointed them to a for sale page because New Ventures Services Corp took ownership of the domain after expiring and the for sale page had a buy now for the domain for them to lick there wounds and move on. The expired domains always fit a pattern. Expire, go under privacy, come out and appear in whois as New Ventures Services Corp with DNS on ZtoMy.com.
Recently, I was contacted yet again by a Network Solutions customer and this time it was clear! Very Clear that something happened that should NOT have!
Network Solutions contacted Dan Suttle, owner of SuttleFish.com that has had the domain name registered at Network Solutions since 1999. SuttleFish.com was registered at that time of contact until January 29, 2017. Two months prior to expiration. Dan recalls it as the follow:
I had received an email from Network Solutions that it was urgent that my account be updated. There was an invoice that needed to be paid. So instead of going into my account, I called and got a sales agent who said yes, I needed to pay $179.91 for my domain & I could get a discount with some other program, etc. I said send me the info by email & I would discuss it with my partner but charge the $179 so I could have the account taken care of.
The next day I get another urgent request to update my account, so I went online and saw the invoice of $358.00 for web hosting. I emailed the agent that I talked to on the phone back & said credit the $179 since my domain was not due, it was the hosting. Finally she said she credited it but what she did was delete the domain name. I was never invoiced for the domain renewal only for the web hosting. It was not about a domain invoice.
Dan continues with what happen next:
After that I was bounced back & forth from web.com & network solutions, then new ventures services corp. No one being able to do anything. Very upset since our name—SuttleFish.com was gone and our website not resolving and email not working.
After filing a complaint with the FCC, some movement started to happen and Network Solutions admitted the error they made:
Thank you so much for Contacting Network Solutions.
The Domain Suttlefish.com was deleted by mistake in our system during the process of the refund. This caused the domain on 11/30/2016 to show deletion and automatically move to the New Venture Account.
During the process, New Venture paid the registration fees, so they need the 9 year renewal paid in order to release teh domain back to Network Solutions. That would be the $179.97 of the original charge.
Once we get the domain back into the Network Solutions account. I can refund that amount back to you if you are waiting until 1/29 to renew. Also, if it is easier, we can just keep the 9 year renewal. I am will to work either way according to your convience.
I sincerely apologize and will work to get resolution as quickly as possible.
IMO, that reply is laced with lies! Domain was deleted during the refund, yet it wasn’t set to expire for another two month? The domain simply never left the domain name registrar Network Solutions according to whois history records and the delete error simply moved the domain to the New Ventures Services Corp account, AT Network Solutions. So the whole “they need the 9 year renewal paid in order to release teh domain back to Network Solutions” is BS. Dan never requested the domain to be renewed for 9 years and it doesn’t need to be paid to “release” the domain back to Network Solutions.
During this time, Dan contacts New Ventures Services Corp, the owners in whois records for his domain name SuttleFish.com as customers are complaining they can not email them or access the SuttleFish.com website:
New Ventures did contact me and pressured me to pay 125.00 to buy back my domain. I had submitted a form online contacting them and told them my domain shouldn’t have been sold to them as it did not expire until Jan 2017. They called me the next day & said the only way to get it was to pay $125.00. I was upset & telling her she couldn’t sell something that didn’t belong to them. She said it did. The “whois” shows New Ventures.
So, Network Solutions made the error by deleting the domain name during a refund, a subsidiary of them, New Ventures Services Corp’s name is in whois records for the domain since November 30, 2016 and pays 9 YEARS of renewal. The domain is “listed in the marketplace”, linking to New V Corp AND they demand Dan to pay $125 to get the domain back, plus requesting the $179.97 that New Venture paid in renewal. Wow! NSI made the “deletion” error doing the refund and appears to be sending its customer through a lot of loops to repair an admitted mistake on there end!
Here are the details:
- Domain Name: SuttleFish.com
- Creation Date: January 29, 1999
- Expire Date: January 29, 2017
Exhibit A: September 24, 2016 whois record indicates the expire date of the domain name SuttleFish.com is January 29, 2017, a date not even reached at the time of this article, let alone back in November 2016, showing Shuttle Fish Farm as the owners of the domain name:
Exhibit B: Unauthorized ownership takes place and domain name servers are changed, removing the companies website and email. Whois changed without owners knowledge to an unknown entity named New Ventures Services Corp, which takes place on November 30, 2016. 2 months prior to expiry date! The domain is renewed for an approx 10 year period at that time.
Exhibit C: Screen shot of the parking page displayed by New Ventures Services Corp where SuttleFish.com redirected to http://ww2.suttlefish.com/?folio=9POR7JU99 as of November 30, 2016 and a message the domain name has recently been listed in the marketplace at the bottom of the page. The link leads to: http://newvcorp.com/contact-us.html and displays a contact form AND a full Excel sheet of its domain name portfolio.
Network Solutions Domain Deletion Policy is pretty clear:
“If a customer does not renew the domain name registration by the expiration date, the domain name registration is subject to deletion at any time after that. In an effort to help our customers avoid unintentional deletion of their domain name registration(s), we may, but are not obligated to, provide our customers with a “grace period” after their domain name registration services expiration date(s) (a “grace period” begins on the day after the date of expiration). We currently endeavor to provide a grace period that extends 35 days past the expiration date, to allow the renewal of domain name registration services. ”
This is insane. You know what else is insane? New Ventures Services Corp has 263,699 domain names listed under its business identity and those are the ones that are publicly displayed and not hid behind privacy. Even crazier? The ZtoMy.com domain name servers houses 637,853 domain names.
Based on reports, Network Solutions “deletes” (keep in mind that the domain name was never deleted from the registry and remained at the domain name registrar Network Solutions during the whole process. The delete they refer to was simply an account change within the same registrar based on whois records) a customers domain name that doesn’t expire for another 2 months due to an error on there part, warehoused the domain name to a subsidiary they own, demand $125 to buy it back, plus the $179 paid to renew the domain name for a length of time not requested by the owner of the domain name. Crazy!
In general, it appears that Network Solutions does every effort to not inform its customers that they (the parent company of NSI) own New Ventures Services Corp. and make it appear it’s not easy to return a domain from them without money changing hands.
The whole 10 year renewal to me by them is crazy and seems as if they do that knowing the original registrant is going to want the domain name back! It’s away for them to sell more renewals.
Thankfully, Dan had seen my first article and made some connections. He later took my advice and transferred the domain name out of Network Solutions to NameBright.com. SuttleFish.com’s website is now back up and working after being offline since November 30, 2016, about 1 month later!
In the end, Dan had to pay $358 for two years of web hosting and Network Solutions refunded the $179 for the domain name renewal. Dan took my advice and transferred the domain to NameBright.com to prevent any further headaches from Network Solutions, something I advise all who have domains registered at Network Solutions, Register.com or any Web.com Group Inc. registrar. The domain name did retain the almost 10 year renewal after transferring.
18 thoughts on “Network Solutions Takes Customers Valid Domain, Holds It Hostage”
This is very bad and sad, and seems very illegal
From a legal standpoint, the reality of pursuing legal action for Dan, requires a $10,000 retainer and $450 per hour rate to pursue action for an attorney related to the delete error on Network Solutions part for the lost business for SuttleFish.com and the hardships caused by the error. As for anything relating to “warehousing” domain names, that is not illegal. Many people, including myself are highly against registrars warehousing domain names.
Web.com is evil.
Looks like a serious conflict on interest with the Network Solutions and New Ventures business relationship. I’d never register a domain at Network Solutions. Scary stuff if you are housing premium domain names over there…
Great research and story Jamie.
Glad I’ve never done business with Networks Solutions.
Just having to communicate with them is a simple nightmare, every time I read something of NS
i say that the only name we have with them has to be moved out, it’s a very expensive name or
probably our most expensive name so before end of next week this name will be taking a hike
from were has been since 1996 Many other names were moved out 2 years ago, just don’t want
to go through a similar suttle fish experience
Registrar:NETWORK SOLUTIONS, LLC.
Thanks Jamie. I’m transferring all my names out of network solutions today.
This has class action written all across it.
How in earth do you take someones domain, this could feed their children, pay their mortgage, before it is expired, and do all this voodoo twisted stuff to it?
This is not the first, but hopefully it is the last.
Network solutions has alot of answering to do, and it better get it’s council ready for a rocky post xmas investigation.
If the mainstream media got a hold of this, it would go viral quickly.
Network solutions houses some of the best domains out there, who knows how many corps have paid such fees, and what not.
Network Solutions is the worst registrar in the world. It is no surprise they are typically the most transferred out of registrar, and frankly only because NameJet/Snapnames transfer there do people retain accounts with them. I am reminded everytime how shady they are when i login (without 2 factor authentication, because they don’t offer it) to my account and they try to sell me on a backorder service of a domain owned by a well established company https://cl.ly/1l3m1k260S2r
Horrible story. I’d say a “shocking story” … except that horrible experiences with Network Solutions aren’t shocking; they’re routine.
What an awful story for these SuttleFish Business owners. Network Solutions basically stole their domain/Business and held it for ransom. Luckily, I only have 1 domain over there. It was a name I purchased from NameJet that they automatically created an account for me and put into that account at Network Solutions. I will be moving it out of there asap. Does anyone actually choose to use Network Solutions as their Registrar or does everyone only have accounts there only because of the domains they have bought from NameJet? I get too many emails from Network Solutions anyways so I will be glad to leave them. Their emails always seem to have the titles…”Urgent” or “Action Needed”. I can see how this type of bullying campaign allows them to get an additional few hundred dollars from most people who have no ideas about the domaining rules. I sure as hell would be scared to lose my domain of my established Business so I would definitely pay the couple hundred to at least keep my emails coming and going. Thanks for the story Jamie and thanks for all of the work you put into helping these guys out from SuttleFish. I’m sure all of your investigating took a lot of time. Good job for being a good domain ambassador. Thank you for the heads up. NS has got some explaining to do.
Ditto, Vito: ” Thanks for the story Jamie and thanks for all of the work you put into helping these guys out from SuttleFish. I’m sure all of your investigating took a lot of time. Good job for being a good domain ambassador. Thank you for the heads up. NS has got some explaining to do,”
and glad for the happy ending, that the user got his business domain out of there safely.
Or, did he? Why is NameBright.com listed for sale, with minimum bid of $999.00?
following the link from DomainTools.
Thanks Louise. I have let the NameBright guys know of the listing, which doesn’t appear to be from them. Based on the Sedo info, it states the seller is from Panama and the domain was listed in 2015. TurnCommerce has owned the domain dating back to 2008, so it’s an invalid listing at Sedo by somebody who doesn’t own the domain name.
By the way – another one i discovered recently is RegistrarAds, Inc (firstname.lastname@example.org) they are selectively warehousing expirations from all the Endurance registrars (dotster, netfirms, domain.com, etc). I had about 10 domains i was planning to let drop, and should have been on their final days before deleting, but suddenly got transfer requests for 2 of them to that email address (i denied the transfer, just for fun).
1&1 is also doing the same with DomCollect.com.
Such a dirty practice.
I am in the same situation and very frustrated. I have a domain with Network Solutions since 1999. The domain was set to expire on Dec. 2017. In Oct, 2017, I went online to try to renew the domain but got a outrage price of $184.95. I then closed the window before commit to payment. However, I then got a confirmation email about the payment. I got pretty upset because I didn’t authorize the payment. I contacted their support rep and cancelled the payment. The rep then transferred me to sales and offered $17.99 for a year so I went ahead with the offer due to the hassle on Oct 19. 2017. The payment went through successfully. To my surprise, I found out that I no longer had the domain now and they had transferred my domain to New Ventures due to the first cancellation. I was on the phone with reps numerous hours and no help. They would use various tactics to hang out the line (e.g. put me on hole, then disconnect, said she’d transfer to her supervisor then dropped the line) and when I call back, I had to start over again. I am very frustrated and upset.
I have all the evidence that it’s their mistake and I still have active service with them. Essentially, they took my money $17.99 on 10/17/2017 and still transferred my domain to its subsidiary on 1/8/2018 asking for ransom. I feel like they need to be responsible and their misconduct have to be stopped. What should I do now? Pay the ransom and move on, file complaint with FCC, law suit? Advice will be appreciated. Thank you.
Can’t believe they still do this. This article was written in 2016, and I’m having the exact same problem with them right this moment. They want me to sign up for the $39 Certified Offer program for the domain, so they can negotiate a price on my behalf. I dug deeper and turns out, New Ventures owns the domain. They want me to negotiate a price with them, and pay $39 for the right to do so.
That’s crazy Joe.
This still continues to this day. It’s now 2020 and these shady practices are still being used to get over on customers. I had several domains that expired – and several that had NOT expired – and they were STOLEN by New Ventures/ztomy.
If you were to add in namebrightdns.com, you’d have some great company as between the two, they absorbed ALL of my domains and charging premiums for them. It’s a real disgrace.
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