Austin Rare Coins asks court to hand over allegedly stolen domain names.
An Austin company has filed an in rem cybersquatting lawsuit in an effort to get control over eight domain names it says were stolen from its possession.
Austin Rare Coins, Inc. first turned to National Arbitration Forum with a UDRP filing to try to get the domain names back. The panel awarded it one domain but not the others, saying it didn’t prove any trademark rights to most of the domain names.
Now the company has filed a lawsuit (pdf) against the domain names in U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Virginia. The complaint was filed in this jurisdiction because the plaintiff says it’s home to both the .com/.net registry (VeriSign) and .org registry (Public Interest Registry).
According to Austin Rare Coins, on or before May 2011 either a hacker or inside employee took control of its servers and email mailboxes, giving the perpetrator a way to initiate a domain transfer and steal the domains.
It also says the Federal Bureau of Investigation is investigating the case.
As an in rem case, the defendant is actually the domain names and not their owner. According to the plaintiff, it believes the whois information for the domains is false. The domains include acoins.com, gold-prices.com, goldcoins.org, goldinfo.net, goldprices.com, rarecoins.com, rarecoins.org, and silverinfo.net.
rarecoins.com is nice… i wouldn’t even bother to handreg the others with a 99cent godaddy coupon code.
Andrew Allemann says
GoldPrices.com is good too.
I think he had built of traffic to many of the others.
True, only 2 of those names are worth decent money but that isn;’the point. All the best to them, sad to see it will cost thousands and thousands to see their return.
……you don’t think GoldPrices.com is worth
hand registering, even with a GoDaddy coupon?
Don’t give up your day job if you are thinking of domaining.
Rarecoins.com is the top keywords in their industry. They paid 60K for it back in 99 or about.
GoldPrices dot com is extremely valuable. You would be dumb to not hand register that domain.
People would fight over that domain.
So they are saying the source of the theft was at verisign, and that a hacker or inside employee had taken control of verisign’s computers?
And IMHO I think GoldPrices.com is the best of the bunch. If I had a nickel for every person in the world who uses the Internet to check gold prices every day then I’d have enough nickels to buy some gold, and trading nickel for gold is smart business.
Street kid says
Is there no built in ‘history’ that could easily see a theft like this and easily reclaim the domain? Ie: why isn’t every domainer freaking out about something like this? No mechanisms at all in place to ensure against something so vulnerable? great. Now I’m paranoid.
Andrew Allemann says
@ JP – not, but VeriSign will be able to transfer the domain with a court order.