The Register reports Nominet Domain Registra 1-2-3 has introduced a stealth charge on customers wishing to transfer out their uk domains (changing the IPS TAG). Anybody who succumbed to their promotional offers to register domains are now having them held hostage despite previously promising there would be no transfer out charge.

Apparently the change in the T&Cs was made two weeks ago with customers claiming no notice. Whether this is legal will, no doubt, be tested in the small claims court.

1-2-3 Reg has the gall to try and justify the charge on the basis that Nominet UK charges a similar £10 +vat to do a manual change. As though the two compare! It is blatantly trying to pull the wool over its customer’s eyes. 1-2-3 makes the change purely electronically. The cost is zero. We know, we do it every day. The Nominet system is there as a protection for the domain owner to be able to recover their domain if, for any reason, the registar (in this case 1-2-3) will not transfer. The details have to be checked and verified manually. That probably means Nominet – and that means us all – make a loss.

We rented a server from 1-2-3 not long ago. It was an attractive price until we found that to actually make it work we would have to pay them much more to takeover our domains. It wasn’t necessary. It wasn’t in the offer, it wasn’t in the T&Cs. It was just ‘policy’. Customer Service when asked what justification just stonewalled. We cut our losses and immediately cancelled. Good job otherwise we would have been paying to get our own domains back.

This company is a disgrace. Or to be more technical, thieving liars. But that isn’t professional so I apologise. I hope they will.

Meantime if you please register your domains with a more straightforward and honest registrar. You might just want to check they are not also a brand of the Host Europe Group. If you are trapped then checkout the small claims court procedure or transfer them via Nominet so they don’t get your money. Nominet may be annoyed enough to checkout whether what 1-2-3 did was allowed in their new Registrar agreement which only came in last month to further protect customers from being ripped off by tricks like this.

1-2-3 Reg Rip Off
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