Beware of Domain Scams!

First off, apologies for no recent posts here at The Monetizer blog as its been a busy time! The Monetizer recently "took the plunge" so to speak and purchased a new domain name (for another blog venture) and then the baby hosting package with Hostgator.com. The issue so far hasn't been with Hostgator at all. Their customer service has been exemplary and prompt. Hostgator's been recommended by many fellow bloggers as the host company to use as they allow you to host unlimited domains on the same account. The main issue has come with the domain site, Regfly.com, and their questionability as a valid company.

This past weekend I became inspired to buy a domain name and didn't do my full homework. Lesson 1, investigate any online company as best you can before paying up. I did a search for domain names with privacy, and regfly.com came up in the search. Upon checking out their site, it seemed like a legit business and the deal seemed great. A domain name for just $9.99 with WHOIS privacy included. For anyone who isn't familiar with WHOIS.net, it's a registry database where you can find out the owner (registrar) on any domain name. Basically when you buy your own domain name, www.yourdomainname.com, your name, address and phone number go into the WHOIS database, and is public info. (For anyone with a website who wasn't aware of WHOIS, go check it out and see what info's available on you!) Luckily, you've got the option to protect your privacy, but it's usually costly. For example, I believe GoDaddy charges an additional $7 to $10 a year for this protection, on top of the $10 domain charge. Regfly's deal seemed great as you got the domain and the privacy all for $10. But like they say "if it seems too good to be true, it probably is".

Regfly was quick to process my order, and send me the official confirmation by email. They provided a live account there which I can log into and check out the domain name. The problem is that the domain name isn't in the WHOIS database after 4 days, meaning that anyone can still buy that domain, yet I've been charged for it. The other problem, regfly.com has very poor customer service. Their "customer support ticket system" has been a slow affair where you type out your problem and wait for them to respond. They responded to one question I posted with an answer asking me for more info, then closed the response so I couldn't respond to their inquiry. Very fishy.... Basically, I've opened a second support ticket now stating I expect the domain name to be in WHOIS within 24 hours. If I don't see this, I'll definitely be disputing the charge on my credit card. To further add to this, I did some Google searches on regfly.com today to find some other customers posting on forums with similar issues to mine. Friends, beware when you go looking for a good deal online for hosting, domains or any other product/service. There's some great deals to be fished out, and also some scammers waiting for us to bite!

In another update, ShoppingAds.com has finally payed The Monetizer straight to Paypal! They are a program of their word, so be patient if you've hit the minimum payout level there yet haven't seen a payment. They typically will pay on the 26th of the month, although my payment was postponed and I received it about a month later.

Here's to your success,
The Monetizer

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