The Domain Name Commissioner is aware of a mass mail out by an entity "NZ Domain Registration Ltd".
NZ Domain Registration Ltd appears to be sending pro forma letters to registrants seeking fees for the registration of .net.nz names.
The letters to registrants specify a .net.nz domain name to be registered.
Authorised .nz domain name registrars are not permitted to specify a particular domain name in an offer of registry services. NZ Domain Registration Ltd is not an authorised .nz registrar.
The letters are also in a printed form that looks similar to an invoice or a renewal notice. This may cause confusion.
Registrants who have recently received what appears to be an invoice or a renewal notice for their domain name are strongly advised to look carefully at all details before paying any sum requested.
Registrants are strongly advised to be cautious before proceeding with any registration offered in a letter from NZ Domain Registration Ltd.
Registrants are also reminded that they are under no obligation to proceed with the registration and that doing nothing will not affect their current domain name registrations.
The DNC is monitoring the situation and will investigate any possible breaches of .nz policy. If people have concerns about the actions of NZ Domain Registration Ltd please email email@example.com.
The Commerce Commission has also issued an alert about this which can be viewed here.
InternetNZ, through the Office of the Domain Name Commissioner (DNC), has obtained an interim injunction against NZ Domain Registration Limited (NZDRL). The injunction relates to NZDRL's recent mass mail out. A copy of the Court's order may be read here.
Money or cheques forwarded to NZDRL as a result of a recent mass mail out will be held in New Zealand pending the court's final decision about whether NZDRL's actions are legal or illegal.
The DNC wants any people who responded by mistake to NZDRL to get their money back. The DNC also wants to make sure that NZDRL gets domain names for the people who did mean to respond - if the domain names are still available.
In the Court proceedings the DNC claims that: NZDRL's offers of .nz domain names look like invoices; NZDRL's offers are likely to mislead or deceive recipients into paying them by mistake; NZDRL appears to be controlled from Western Australia; The DNC wants, at least, to have all responses to the offers held in New Zealand until everyone who has responded to them has confirmed whether or not they meant to try to register a new domain name.
NZDRL has not yet advised the Court of its full responses to the DNC's claims. NZDRL has claimed that its offers are made in good faith and that its offer of a free MP3 player remains good.
The DNC notes that NZDRL's offer does not ask for sufficient information to allow a .nz domain name to be registered.
NZDRL is not an authorised .nz registrar (or a reseller for an authorised ..nz registrar). NZDRL has not already registered the .nz domain names that it is offering to members of the public.
People who accept NZDRL's offer may find that the domain name they want has been registered to someone else before NZDRL could get it. The .nz registry operates online on a "first come, first served" basis.
The DNC still encourages people to be cautious when deciding what action to take in respect of NZDRL's notices.