As reported by various news sources today, a federal class action lawsuit was filed in California against Network Solutions for allegedly front running attempted domain registrations.
As most of us are aware last month, it was widely reported that Network Solutions engaged in a practice whereby they would temporarily register any domain name that someone did a whois search for, to see if the domain was available.
If the person who did the whois lookup or any other party wanted to then register the domain, they would have to do so through Network Solutions, for the period the domain was temporarily registered by Network Solutions. The suit alleges that this practice forced millions of people to buy domain names from Network Solutions rather than from cheaper competitors.
According to the suit the practice netted the company millions of dollars.
The suit also named ICANN, alleging that it made Network Solutions’ alleged scheme possible by allowing companies that sell domain names to avoid paying registration fees for names cancelled within five days. The plaintiffs alleged that this allowed Network Solutions to defraud customers at no cost to itself.