How To Prevent Domain Seizures

You may also be interested in our other article regarding Bulletproof Offshore Hosting and Server Providers.

Background Info

What Are Domain Seizures?
A Domain Seizure is when a Government, Law Enforcement Agency, or sometimes even a Corporation pressures a Domain Registrar to give them control of a domain name. They can then redirect the domain away from the domain owner’s server(s) and redirect it to nothing, their own site, or a message of their choosing. This basically renders the website useless and it now becomes unusable for people worldwide. They can also just ask for the domain to be suspended which basically renders the domain useless and redirects it to nothing. This is usually done under veiled threats without due process or a proper warrant or court order. If they do get a court order, it will likely be from a US or UK court which has no authority over the country where the website or owner is actually located. On rare occasions, they will go through the trouble of doing this process the correct way and getting the court order from the correct country. This starts the discussion on why this whole process is usually pretty shady and needs to be massively reformed. Most Domain Registrars will not want the hassle of dealing with any legal trouble and won’t bother fighting any of these requests. I can’t blame them as they don’t want to risk their money or their business over a couple domains. Some registrars will suspend domains over just a few DMCA complaints, even though a lot of times DMCA notices are NOT even filed correctly by companies.

Why Should I Care?
“Domain seizures used to be a rare occurrence, but US law enforcement has become adept at exploiting a quirk in the Internet’s governance structure that allows them to seize domain names without due process. The rate has been increasing exponentially with a total of 87 in 2010, 350 in 2011, 758 in mid-2012, to 1,700 in mid-2013. Last month, nearly 5,000 domains were seized via a single court order. We desperately need to start tracking DNS based chilling effects on free speech rights.”
Source: More From Indolering.com

Basically, The US has come to the conclusion that any domain that is connected to or managed by a US entity is subject to US law and can be seized. This includes using a US based Registrar or if your domain extension is overseen by a US company such as Verisign or Afilias which oversee .com .net .org .info and many more. This has even started to become common with other countries, mostly those with close ties to the US such as the UK. All you have to do to see examples of this is search the Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit which has been responsible for numerous illegal domain seizures. What the US, the UK, and other countries have failed to realize is they are NOT the world police and their laws don’t apply worldwide. They cannot just tell a website to shutdown or seize their domain just because they want to. Most of the time they do not have a court order, let alone one in the country where the website is actually based. Most of the time they are just doing the dirty work for large corporations and their interests. We need to fight this unjust and unfair process. We need to do it for freedom of speech, due process, and no longer bending over for corporations. More Reading on This Subject

Can You Give Me A Few Examples?
Example #1
Example #2
Example #3
Example #4
Example #5
Example #6
Example #7
Example #8
Example #9
Example #10
Example #11
Example #12

Guide To Choosing a Domain to Avoid Seizures

What Should I Avoid?
-Any domain extensions operated by Afilias.
-Any domain extensions operated by Verisign.
-All .ME domains, as their operator is partnered with Afilias and GoDaddy.
-Any domain extensions that are operated in or affiliated with the USA, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, etc.
-Domain extensions that have registration restrictions like needing to be located within their country. Also some care about what content is hosted such as pornography.

What Should I Look For?
-Countries that don’t have close relations or ties to USA, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, etc.
-Sovereign Independent Countries.
-Countries with high privacy rights and freedom
-Countries that don’t often align with the policies of USA, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia
-Countries that aren’t influenced by other countries or their laws
-Domain extensions that require no registration restrictions (Can be registered by anyone in the world)
-Domain extensions that have had no major seizures in the past
-Domain extensions that are run either by the government they represent or a company/organization within that country. (Some outsource their extension to be managed by a company within another country or may be affiliated with another registrar. Watch For This)

How Can I Find This Information?
Google and Wikipedia are your friends!
I usually just google the country code domain extension (Example: “.ch”)
One of the first few results that should come up is a Wikipedia article telling all about that domain extension.
ICANNWiki is also a very helpful site.
List of Country Code Domain Extensions

What Domain Extensions Do You Suggest?
These are ones I came up with by doing a little research. I may be missing some. If you know of others, feel free to comment.

.AL – Albania
.BO – Bolivia
.BY – Belarus
.CD – Democratic Republic of the Congo
.CH – Switzerland
.CM – Cameroon
.CR – Costa Rica
.DJ – Djibouti
.EC – Ecuador
.GD – Grenada
.IS – Iceland
.KZ – Kazakhstan
.LI – Liechtenstein
.LT – Lithuania
.PK – Pakistan
.RS – Serbia
.RU – Russia
.RW – Rwanda
.SH – Saint Helena
.SI – Slovenia
.SR – Suriname
.SU – Soviet Union
.TD – Chad
.TO – Tonga
.UG – Uganda
.UZ – Uzbekistan
.VN – Vietnam
.WS – Samoa

What About The New gTLD or Generic Top Level Domain Extensions?
Here are examples of gLTD’s if you were wondering what they were. These you will have to look up individually because different companies manage different gLTD’s. For Example: .host is managed by Radix and is based out of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.

Guide to Choosing a Domain Registrar to Avoid Seizures

General Registrars with Variety of Extensions
https://www.easydns.com
https://publicdomainregistry.com
https://www.onlydomains.com
http://en.todaynic.com
http://www.ipmirror.com
https://www.ukrnames.com/eng/
https://www.imena.ua
http://www.toglodo.com
http://www.net-chinese.com
https://www.genious.net
http://kheweul.org
https://subreg.cz/en/
http://www.atakteknoloji.com/en-US/
http://www.domaindiscount24.com
http://www.bizcn.com
http://www.eranet.com aka http://www.now.top
http://nicenic.net
http://cnobin.com

.BO
https://www.nic.bo
http://donweb.com

.CD .RW and .UG
http://www.afriregister.com
https://conic.cd
http://www.kplhosting.rw
http://yegohost.com
http://www.esicia.com
https://www.registry.co.ug

.CH and .LI
http://www.centinated.ch/en/
https://switchplus.ch
https://www.webland.ch/en-us/
https://www.infomaniak.com/
https://www.hoststar.ch/en
https://www.hostpoint.ch/en/

.CR
https://www.nic.cr/en/

.DJ
http://www.dj

.IS
http://www.isnic.is/en/
https://www.flokinet.is/en/
https://www.orangewebsite.com/domain-registration.php

.RU & .SU
http://www.webnames.ru/en/
https://ahnames.com
https://www.nic.ru
http://ro1.ru

.TO
https://www.tonic.to

.KG
https://www.domain.kg

.KZ
http://www.nic.kz

.PK
http://pknic.net.pk

.RS
https://www.ninet.rs

.VN
http://www.pavietnam.net/en/
http://tenmien.vnn.vn

WHOIS Privacy Protection

Domain WHOIS Privacy Protection is a Must!
You must get domain privacy protection! Some people fake their information when signing up for a domain, but this can be dangerous as you can have your domain suspended if ICANN or the Registrar finds out the information is fake. This can also be dangerous if their is some kind of transfer or dispute with the domain. This WHOIS protection service typically comes free as an extra feature from your Registrar. Sometimes Registrars are extra thirsty for money and will try and charge a small fee for this. I would suggest using a Registrar where WHOIS Protection is free, but if you must use one that charges extra for it, it is better than NOT having it. WHOIS privacy protection is not always bulletproof and may give up your real information if pressured to do so by a government or legal threat. This is where having fake information to register the domain would come in handy. You will have to decide the pros and cons of each route (Real WHOIS Details vs Fake WHOIS Details) as they both can have problems.

The best way to register your domains and servers would be to create an anonymous corporation in a smaller country like Seychelles or Panama and register everything through the corporation. By everything, I mean hosting, domain, SSL certificate, etc. This method is the safest for sure, but it can be very time consuming and costly. This is how the big players do it. Just look at ThePirateBay guys and their shadowy corporation named Reservella who technically owns the site that is based in Seychelles. Here is proof that the anonymous corporation route works wonders. ThePirateBay founders just got acquitted of criminal charges due to a lack of proof of them being the ones currently running the site since it’s registered to Reservella.

Conclusion

While there are many options at the moment for near bulletproof domains, here are a few examples of some of the best methods available.

Register .WS domain through Eranet
This method is used by many of the Russian carding sites.
I don’t believe they offer WHOIS protection for .WS domains, so be careful what personal information you give them.

Both .IS and .TO domains have been pretty bulletproof. These are always great options.
Iceland is known for being a free speech haven and many streaming portals and warez sites utilize Tonga’s relaxed domain policies.

20 thoughts on “How To Prevent Domain Seizures”

  1. Dean says:

    I will be running casino site. Please help recommend the best offshore hosting company ( like AWS) that has decent speed, handle massive loads and accept bitcoins for the payment. Thanks !
    Cheers D

    1. ahos says:

      try worldstream.nl

  2. Parion says:

    Thank you for this amazing article!
    Can you please give me some more information about .by ?
    Do you think it could be as safe as an .is domain?

  3. scohen says:

    You can as-well respond via email.. i might have gone of this site while you respond so email is an alternate option..Thanks

  4. scohen says:

    any suggestion on bulletproof sites that supports PM ? (Perfect money) ?
    If not do you have any trust worthy exchanger that could help exchange from PM to Bitcoin to enable me patronize some suggested websites ?

    i will really appreciate your answer.

  5. anonymous says:

    Russian TLDs .RU/.SU and Russian registrars (=those who operate as a Russian company), especially NIC.RU (Ru-Center) which is the largest registrar, aren’t a good choice in most cases.

  6. userah says:

    do subreg reuqires documents to register domains is it compulsory

  7. userah says:

    and is offcourse what about .sc and .st

    1. admin says:

      .SC is related to Afilias. Don’t use .SC
      .ST I am not sure about…
      Here are some rules regarding .ST domains taken from their site.

      1.The statement that you made in the registration process are complete and accurate and that you will maintain and update this information as needed to keep it current, complete and accurate. ST Registry may contact account holder or domain registrant in case of any issues or news/highlights about services provided on nic.st website. You as a customer are free to cancel your account and/or service at any time.

      2.To your knowledge, the registration of domain name will not infringe upon or otherwise violate the rights of any third party according to the laws of Sao Tome and Principe or any other applicable jurisdiction.

      3.You are not registering the domain name for an unlawful purpose.

      4.You will not knowingly use the domain name or any other connected service in violation of any applicable laws or regulations, including, but not limited the sending of unsolicited bulk E-mail (“spamming”), flooding, or other abuse of free search engine services.

      5.Please bear in mind that it is solely your own responsibility to determine whether your domain name registration infringes or violates someone else’s rights.

      6.You are not registering the domain for unsolicited email (spam) and you are not registering the name for marketing of adult content (porn) or illegal gambling activities. Please note that .ST Registry is not responsible for the content – nor do we actively monitor content – but that we can remove domains without warning and refund.

  8. userah says:

    can u please contact via my mail only known to you and i want some advice and help from you please

  9. userah says:

    how about buying .CZ domain which is very cheap and can it be equivalent and safe from seizure

  10. userah says:

    is it safe to register a .com or .net at namecheap.com or enom.com
    or
    it is better to register a .com or .net at https://subreg.cz/en/

    and can u please suggest cheap and safe domain extension from subreg

    1. admin says:

      I would never register a .com or .net period. Especially from NameCheap which an Enom reseller. They are american based and your domain can be suspended easily.

      I would suggest looking into domains such as the following.
      .CH – Switzerland
      .CM – Cameroon
      .CR – Costa Rica
      .IS – Iceland
      .RS – Serbia
      .SU – Soviet Union
      .TO – Tonga
      .WS – Samoa

      Check out these companies:
      https://www.billing.flokinet.com/domainchecker.php
      http://www.eranet.com/domain/
      https://subreg.cz/en/
      https://www.easydns.com

      The most bulletproof company is probably eranet as all the russian hacker and credit card theft sites are using them and buying .ws domains. It looks like they are just using fake whois info as I don’t think eranet offers whois protection on .ws domains.
      .ws domains are cheap, apparently bulletproof if you buy from the right place, and apparently they don’t care if your information you give them isn’t 100% accurate. I mean if you are openly selling stolen credit cards on your site and no one can touch you, it must be pretty bulletproof. For the sites I’m talking about, please read: http://krebsonsecurity.com/2016/05/carding-sites-turn-to-the-dark-cloud/

  11. keyboard says:

    what moldova domain .md?

    1. admin says:

      There was only 23,306 .md domains registered as of 2013-11-27. It doesn’t seem very popular. It is run by an entity within Moldova with no ties to US or other larger companies, so that is good. The registrar says that they have rules against “Prohibited sites which contain adult or mature content”, Which you may want to consider.

      Restricting adult content is very common on certain country domains. Many middle eastern countries also have this policy, so be careful when choosing domains to look at their policies.

  12. fifyty says:

    Hi,can you recommand domain register support bitcoin and ignore dmca?
    I only see gand.net,but theay are in france…I doubt if they really can ignore dmca.
    Easydns is good,but the domain extensions are too less,they dont have many important extensions.

    1. admin says:

      https://subreg.cz/en/ accepts Bitcoin and would be good for non DMCA.

  13. NN643 says:

    You forgot to add the domain information privacy protection part.

    Are free domains like cz.cc recommended?

    1. admin says:

      I am still adding more registrars plus I will be adding a section about privacy protection. Good call.
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.cc
      .CC domains are run by Verisign, so I would say that no, that is not recommended.

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