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New internet invoicing scam hits small firms

Bogus invoices are being sent to online businesses

Bogus invoices are being sent out to website domain name holders to claim false “Notice of Expiration” charges.

.uk name holders have been receiving the invoices from an organisation called “Domain Registry Services”, which claims that it is the Registry for those names. The notice states that the holder stands to lose their domain name unless the invoice is settled, and the sums being demanded are many times the amount charges by Nominet UK, the uk. internet registry.

These false invoices have been issued to owners of .com and .org domain names in the past, but Nominet UK now advises all .uk domain name holders to be careful when checking correspondence regarding expiry of domain names.

“One of the pitfalls for small companies is to assume that what they are doing is legitimate,” said a Nominet UK spokesperson. “Without an in-house IT service, which most small businesses don’t have, then your firm is vulnerable to this type of fraud, and will be targeted.”

A similar scam, reported by Startups.co.uk, involved bogus companies sending letters to businesses across the UK demanding a £95 registration fee to comply with the Data Protection Act.

However, buying and selling on the internet has rocketed over the past three years, and if businesses are not spending their time setting up or improving their websites, they coulde lose out to competitors.

For those firms planning to put their business online, or have recently done so, it would be worth a visit to the “Doing business online” category of Startups.co.uk.

Nominet UK advise all .uk domain holders to be careful when checking correspondence regarding the expiry of their domain names. If you have any doubts about the validity of an invoice, please contact your existing registration agent who will be able to advise you.

Nominet Uk can be found at www.nominet.org.uk

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