Domain appraisal scams seem to still be going strong and one of the most recent ones comes from someone claiming to be Stephanie Meyer who represents an investor in Canada who wants to buy your domain name. In one version of the email I’ve seen her identify herself as a representative from Hostgator using the email address email@example.com. The email will look something like this:
I represent an investor from Canada who wants to buy [your domain name] for a new online project.
The buyer is a professional investor in Real Estate.
Investing in web names is a new direction for him.
I located your contact information in a domain name whois lookup and understand that you own the domain name.
Are you still interested in selling?
I work for a hosting company.
I help our clients to buy and sell intellectual properties.
If you have more names I can help you to sell them.
Domain Name Broker
I have written about domain appraisal scams in the past, in fact one of my posts has over 800 comments now, most from people who have received emails from a scammer. The way the scam works is, the scammer sends an email like the one above that gets you excited, “hey, someone wants to buy my domain name!”
Then it gets better. They tell you that your domain is probably worth $10,000 or more, you just need to get an appraisal to prove the value and the domain is as good as sold. You get more excited. They send you a link to an appraisal site, heck they often even send you a review of that appraisal site from some other site, so it must be legitimate right?
Nope, both sites are run by the scammer. Nobody wants to buy your domain name, they want to charge you for an “appraisal” that’s how they make their money. Once you pay for the appraisal they disappear. This scam has been going on for over a decade but it’s still going strong.
I try to do a service to the community and out a scammer every time I get one of these. Don’t get scammed, and expose these scammers publicly whenever you can.