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Are They Selling Our Personal Data???

I registered a domain about a month ago using GoDaddy. Since then I've been flooded with spam from web developers soliciting me to buy their services. Fortunately I used an email alias so I can just delete it and create a new one. However, I'm concerned that I'll just start getting spammed at that email address as well. Is there something in the TOS when I signed up for my GD account that says GD is going to make my email address available to third parties?

162 REPLIES 162
Helper VI Helper VI
Helper VI

Re: I'm getting spammed heavily by web developers

It is usually like that.  As far as I know, the registrant's info is open to anybody via whois in order to protect the general public... You can however, pay extra to make your information private.

~Jan Mykhail Hasselbring Web Administrator @ fullstackwebsolution.com
Helper VI Helper VI
Helper VI

Re: I'm getting spammed heavily by web developers

Here is an example the shows GD WHOIS:

https://whois.icann.org/en/lookup?name=godaddy.com

~Jan Mykhail Hasselbring Web Administrator @ fullstackwebsolution.com

Re: I'm getting spammed heavily by web developers

I am encountering the same thing...  I believe GoDaddy is selling the information.  How would someone within days think to search for contact information on what was previously a non-existent domain.

Figure if they sell the public contact lists (or dump them publicly) it makes their "private registration" more valuable.

 

 

Helper V

Re: I'm getting spammed heavily by web developers

I have not used GoDaddy as my registrar (until recently) but I have had a few domains for a few years and even when they were not private I have never been heavily spammed. It seems however that any possible evidence that the spammers are getting contact information from GoDaddy is entirely circumstantial.

Helper V

Re: I'm getting spammed heavily by web developers


@BitFiddler wrote:

I am encountering the same thing...  I believe GoDaddy is selling the information.  How would someone within days think to search for contact information on what was previously a non-existent domain.

Figure if they sell the public contact lists (or dump them publicly) it makes their "private registration" more valuable.

 

 


Did you read what JHasselbring said? Are you familiar with how domain registration works? Are you aware of the requirement that domain names have valid contact information? Did you know that essentially all registrars offer private registration?

New

Re: I'm getting spammed heavily by web developers

I have 14 GoDaddy Domains  

 

Never had a spam problem until I got Number 14   

 

I am not happy with the amount of emails I am getting

New
New

Re: I'm getting spammed heavily by web developers

When you register a domain at any registrar, your personal information including your email address is made public in WhoIS service that every registrar or domain registry keeps. This information is in public domain and anybody can access it. To avoid spammers you may use a fake email address but that is against the TOS and you may lose the domain. Simple way is create another email at any free mail service and use it only to register domains. Do not use your personal/business email id. Or, you can buy domain privacy/protection services which will mask your email address, name, residential address, telephone number, etc. in the WHOIS database, and so public will not be able to spam you and you will still remain the legal registrant and owner of the domain name.

Web Pro

Frequent calls from telemarketers

I am pissed. Since being a customer with this company, I have had endless telemarketers and scammers call me repeatedly and now my emails are being hacked.

New

Re: Frequent Calls From Telemarketers

Hi there. While you could change your email accounts passwords to more complex ones (eg. This!sMyP@sSw0rD) and blacklisting the numbers on your mobile. I'm sure its probably malware on your mobile/computer.

My friends have had Godaddy as hosting solutions provider for almost a decade now and they've never complained about those sort of things..

Maybe check your computer for malware and/or rootkits?

 

Best regards,

RB

Community Manager
Community Manager

Re: Frequent calls from telemarketers

Hi @krfeltes. Sorry to hear that's happening for you. @RBucci definitely has some good suggestions on moving forward. I also wanted to assure you that GoDaddy doesn't sell information. The most likely cause of the calls you're seeing is that the callers were able to look up your WHOIS information. Please take a look at this article, which explains how that can happen.

 

 

JesseW - GoDaddy | Community Manager | 24/7 support available at x.co/247support | Remember to choose a solution and give kudos.
New

Re: I'm getting spammed heavily by web developers

I think most of you are missing the point. The issue is that as soon as you register a domain, the spam starts, specific to that domain. Given the size of the namespace, it's not possible that spammers are dictionary-attacking the entire namespace to find new registrations ... that info must be available via an API or outright sale of info. While I think this would be an ICANN violation on GD's part, it certainly is a win-win for them: people on this message board are saying "hey, if you don't like it, give GD even more money to 'protect' your privacy" and they get money from me as a customer and as a product to resell. If that's the case, and it appears to be (again, it's not anecdotal if you register a domain and immediately get spammed on it), then that's a load of carp.

Moderator
Moderator

Re: I'm getting spammed heavily by web developers

Hey @buggy1,

 

First let me say welcome to the community! Smiley Happy

 

Those are some valid concerns I can definitely understand. However, I can assure you this is not an intend situation on our part. This has been a common practice for some time, so much in fact we've posted an article on this very thing on the GoDaddy Garage.

 

Concerning an API; you may be right. I know from personal experience there are some services out there that specifically put out active reports on newly registered domains within the last 24 hours. Much of this information is pulled from the publicly listed details of the WhoIs database. 

 

CG - GoDaddy | Community Moderator
24/7 support available at x.co/247support

Spammers after registering a new Domain Name

Just bought a new Domain for a client and have received 20 spam mails some masquerading as being from Go Daddy. They note the knowledge of the new Domain Name and offer logos and other similar items.

 

Does GoDaddy provide a list of new domains and their adim addresses to these folks?

Employee
Employee

Re: Spammers after registering a new Domain Name

Hello @Burndog!

 

Welcome to the community! When you purchase a new domain, your information is entered into the Whois Database which is available to the public per ICANN rule. One of our talented bloggers explains this in detail in the article below:

 

What you need to know about domain privacy and the WHOIS database

 

Heather - GoDaddy | Community Moderator
24/7 support available at x.co/247support

Re: Spammers after registering a new Domain Name

I get same thing everyday,or anytime,i order a domain...

Re: Spammers after registering a new Domain Name

This is the first time I have gotten spammed on such a large scale for a new Domain.

The next domain I register I'll try another company to test to see if there is any difference. Not a conspiracy theorist but I hope this is not a case to try to drive up sales for Domain Privacy sales.

Re: Spammers after registering a new Domain Name

The question is: How do the spammers know which domain name to look for?

 

I understand the information goes publicly in the database, but to find my information, they have to know the domain name I registered.

 

Is there a way to browse the database by most recently added domains?  I registered a domain yesterday and I'm now receiving a lot of spam about it, but I never told any one which name I registered.

How can I get GoDaddy to stop spamming my phone with unsolicited text message ads?

All week GoDaddy has been sending me daily unsolicited text messages with the following text:

 

Hurry! Your Go-daddy 90% Website design coupon will Expire Today. Click here http://clk2.it/uYN2YN Now to Activate the Coupon & Get your Website at 90% discount. 

 

Can someone please make it stop? 

I used to be a huge fan of GoDaddy, but then they stopped email support, and now they are spamming me. I'm slowly starting to hate this company. 

Advocate VI Advocate VI
Advocate VI

Re: How can I get GoDaddy to stop spamming my phone with unsolicited text message ads?

This sounded suspicious to me. I am a GoDaddy Frequent Flyer (by which I mean I have a number of sites there and manage many sites there). I have NEVER received a text message, although I do get email messages with coupons.

 

So I started snooping around and found this: https://www.godaddy.com/help/why-am-i-receiving-text-message-spam-from-what-appears-to-be-godaddy-24... -- sounds to me like it's spam, and not really from GoDaddy.

 

if you copied that message literally, one clue is that it says "your Go-daddy 90%" -- I'm sure that the GoDaddy marketing folks are smart enough to spell the business name correctly.

 

Moderator
Moderator

Re: How can I get GoDaddy to stop spamming my phone with unsolicited text message ads?

Hey @xander99,

 

Sorry to hear you've been getting inundated with texts.  As @webdiva accurately pointed out, those text messages are not sent from, nor authorized by GoDaddy.  We are working diligently to stop these sorts of messages.

 

Thanks for letting us know about this issue.

 

 

ML - GoDaddy | Community Moderator
24/7 support available at x.co/24-7support

Re: Frequent calls from telemarketers

I just canceled my domain today due to the same issue. I registered on a saturday, then starting Monday morning I received 7 calls from 7 different cities with 4 different spam texts in one day! Absolutely ridiculous. I then realized it was the WHOIS information that godaddy makes public...basically everything you use to register your domain (name, address, email, phone number). 1and1 offers security (replacing the information with generic information) for free. Godaddy wants $8 for it. Yeah right. Godaddy is a joke. Then i go to register an email @mydomain.com... and surprise surprise... 1and1 gives them free, godaddy makes you pay. Then after I cancel my domain, of course every provider I try to register with now says it's not available. I'll use 1and1 from now on, they're cheaper and I don't have to deal with a dozen scammers because they offer to keep your info private for free.

P.S. The admin claiming it's not godaddy should explain why the texts read "Congrats, You have been selected for Godaddy 70% Business Video Animation Deal. Click Here NOW to activate your deal. Expiring in 2 hrs, Hurry up" and "Urgent! Last Day for Godaddy Special 70% Off Animated Business Video Deal. Click Here to Activate this Deal Now & Boost your Sales by 1000%."
New

Re: How can I get GoDaddy to stop spamming my phone with unsolicited text message ads?

This has been a problem for me, too. After resetting my official GoDaddy contact preferences twice, the texts still came -- which reinforces the outside spam theory. I always delete the message without clicking on the link, but I'll look closer next time at the spelling in the text.

WHOIS Directory

Hello all,

A couple months ago I purchased a new domain on behalf of a client for their website. After a short while, we started getting calls from web designers offering their services to build a website for the domain. I understand that they obtained our details from who.is, and when I looked into this further I soon found out that they list domains with the date of purchase etc, pretty much all the information you would need to make contact. A spammers dream I suppose. Once I sorted out the privacy of the domain the calls stopped, as the details were no longer available on whois.

Question: Is this still possible? I cannot seem to find the page I previously discovered within the WhoIs directory, where lists of domains and the dates in which they were purchased, are accessible to the public.

 

Would this be considered spam / nuisance cold calling? Or is it an effective way of reaching out to potential new customers? Does anyone have any experience with this type of 'marketing'?

 

Thank you.

Super User I
Super User I

Re: WHOIS Directory


@SlicKaiZeN wrote:

Hello all,

A couple months ago I purchased a new domain on behalf of a client for their website. After a short while, we started getting calls from web designers offering their services to build a website for the domain. I understand that they obtained our details from who.is, and when I looked into this further I soon found out that they list domains with the date of purchase etc, pretty much all the information you would need to make contact. A spammers dream I suppose. Once I sorted out the privacy of the domain the calls stopped, as the details were no longer available on whois.

Question: Is this still possible? I cannot seem to find the page I previously discovered within the WhoIs directory, where lists of domains and the dates in which they were purchased, are accessible to the public.

 

Would this be considered spam / nuisance cold calling? Or is it an effective way of reaching out to potential new customers? Does anyone have any experience with this type of 'marketing'?

 

Thank you.


@SlicKaiZeN This is really no different then any other type of telemarketer, they are harvesting the whois database for phone number, emails, etc. It's not too late to add domain privacy, you can do so here: https://www.godaddy.com/domainaddon/private-registration.aspx

---

Save money on Godaddy products and get a .com domain for under $1: http://bit.ly/2E7MV0I

Re: WHOIS Directory

Hi Justin,

Yes, I added domain privacy shortly after, and the calls ceased. My question is, where on the whois directory did they find my domain in the first place without actually know the domain name beforehand, in order to do a search?  Is there a list of newly purchased domains somewhere in the directory?

New

Re: I'm getting spammed heavily by web developers

Responding to the Moderator...

So you're telling us that GoDaddy is NOT selling this information?  How are we supposed to believe that.  Like others in this thread, I have 20+ domains without the privacy add-on, and have NEVER had a problem until last week when I registered another new domain.  One day after registration... 20+ spam messages, and two phone calls.  This IS new, and is NOT happening with other registrars.

If GoDaddy is selling this information, or notifying spammers of new registrations, then this practice is unethical, and is the equivalent of crapping on us customers who feed you and your families.  You should feel ashamed, and not proud of who you work for.  Especially considering that we customers DO have a choice of registrars.

New

Re: I'm getting spammed heavily by web developers

It's a good point... We all know that our contact information can be searched in whois, but how are they guessing our new domain names within a day or two registration?  It just seems a bit suspicious to me.  Not only did I get spammed in less than 24 hours, but then they started calling me on my cell phone too... The one that GoDaddy has on file.  It was never an issue until recently, and I think it smells.  Are there any ethical companies left?

New

Re: I'm getting spammed heavily by web developers

Either godaddy is selling the info, or someone has developed a way to monitor all new domain name registrations.  Within weeks of registering a new name in October (and we have more than 200 already registered with godaddy), I started receiving phony billings related to this new account and coming to the email address used to set up the account.  So it is a new situation, not having happened over the last 12 yrs of relationship with godaddy.  But there is also no practical chance of someone having plugged in this particular domain name to discover a recent domain name registration.  So however it is happening, I think godaddy has a big problem that they better get fixed!  I for one have no intention of paying for a private listing on 200 plus accounts.

New

Buyer beware

Just to warn everyone, be sure before you renew or do anything on GoDaddy you go to your preferences and TURN ON privacy. Because GoDaddy never told me this existed, when I renewed my domain names all of the sudden I am swamped with irritating & unwanted emails from every webhosting idiot in the world. Plus I am getting more spam messages from jerks.

 

Thank you so very much GoDaddy for violating my privacy and exposing my private email to every igit on the internet.

Re: I'm getting spammed heavily by web developers

I buy a lot of domains and have bought many from go daddy in the past but I will never buy one again from them after what happened to me in the last 24 hours due to a domain I just bought.  My business office was swamped with phone calls and emails, including a phone call by some dolt who said he was from Go Daddy but who could not get around to the point of his call and then finally hung up.

 

Somebody is clearly getting this info and using it.  I've also bought domains elsewhere, never seen anything like this in my life.  Your company is done for me, what a fiasco.

unwanted calls from India

Hi there, not sure where to best post this so please redirect me if needed.

 

I just opened a new domain on GoDaddy and since then I am receiving around 3-4 e-mails and 2 calls every day on my mobile number to offer web development services.

 

Can anyone advise how these people get hold of my details? I tried looking up the domain on whois.net and no personal details are showing there. Could it be that GoDaddy is sharing that information (willingly or not) to third parties?

 

Thanks!

Re: I'm getting spammed heavily by web developers

Yes, it's the phone calls on my cell phone that really annoy me as well.

Re: How can I get GoDaddy to stop spamming my phone with unsolicited text message ads?

I'm getting spammed several times daily. Blocking doesn't seem to help they just keep using different numbers. It is very distracting to deal with, sadly it doesn't seem like there is anything we can do about it... Any advice would be helpful at stopping them other then spending hundreds of dollars on private domains...

 

 

 

Re: unwanted calls from India

bumping up the post. Phone calls have stopped but I am still receiving daily e-mails and I am not clear where these guys get my details from.

New

Re: unwanted calls from India

It's likely that they got your information from the WHOIS. If you what personal information of yours is available to others, go to whois.icann.org.

Re: unwanted calls from India

The same thing is happening with me. It started today. I got 10 emails this morning asking if I needed SEO or web building services! I also got 3 missed calls at home!

I purchased and activated my domain early this week. I didn't opt for the privacy. Is there anything we can do to stop this?

Can I  either delete my domain contact details or make a fake info up?

New

Re: unwanted calls from India


@muscleflex wrote:

The same thing is happening with me. It started today. I got 10 emails this morning asking if I needed SEO or web building services! I also got 3 missed calls at home!

I purchased and activated my domain early this week. I didn't opt for the privacy. Is there anything we can do to stop this?

Can I  either delete my domain contact details or make a fake info up?


You could make fake info up although I highly don't recommend it. The people at ICANN tend to find out eventually and could permanently suspend your domain. Plus GoDaddy sends a verification email to the email you put in your domain contact info just to check if you actually own the email. There are a few free websites around offering phone and calling services, one of them is www.textnow.com. You sign up for free and they give you a phone number which you could input in your domain contact info. As for your email, you could create a free email and use that to verify you own the email. If you want to be professional, I know that GoDaddy gives you 100 free forwarding email addresses with every domain you purchase. You could have one of those forward to the free email address you created.

The toxicity of using godaddy

I have been a customer for over 10 years, and recently purchased a new domain product. In 3 days, I have received over 100 spam emails to my account email in regards to this domain, many of which are disguised as urgent. I have also received 6 phone calls, and several pieces of paper mail at my home address.

 

The fact that you ask people to pay you money to prevent this is essentially extortion. 

 

I will be transitioning all my products to another company.

Helper VI
Helper VI

Re: The toxicity of using godaddy

Hello @knutsonpro

 

First, I would like to say that I'm sorry for what happened to you.

I'm a customer of GoDaddy from 2007 and, in part, I agree with you.

In the last year or so, whenever I've registered a new domain, I got emails with all kind of offers, usually from the same 4-5 companies but never from GoDaddy.

For me it was easy to add those email to my spam filter and now they don't bother me anymore.

Why can't you do the same?

Do you really think that it is in GoDaddy's interest to keep his clients under stress?

The domain registration data are public so anyone can see them.

The Domain Privacy service has appeared only to protect your identity from those who abuse the registration information.

I hope you will find your peace.

Good luck.

Smiley Happy

***Signature: -> Do not assume anything! If you want help, explain your problem. If my post helped you, give it a Kudo. If you have the solution, mark the topic as Solved.
New

Renewed and bought another domain and flooded with spam!

I will never do business with Godaddy ever again. The day after buying and renewing some domains I was bombarded with spam fron Indians wanting to build me websites. In 5 days I recieved 47 emails. That is complete bull**bleep**. Godaddy is done in my book. Not one more penny will I spend here!

Anonymous
Not applicable

Re: Renewed and bought another domain and flooded with spam!

Hi,

we all get them. It's just how you deal with them that counts. I just put filters on my email, they mostly go straight in the bin. I had my phone ringing off the hook, I just bought a BT phone that blocks withheld numbers, the ones that try and get clever and show the number, they have to announce their name. I don't know a 'David Beckham' or 'Jenifer Lopez', they don't get through. But they must sit watching whois with a script that see's new registrants from Godaddy and it's jolly time.

 

They don't seem to bother me that much. I think they go more after Wordpress users. 

It is bloody annoying though. 

New

Are they selling our personal data???

I have domains with google domains, namecheap and I had domains with 1&1 - and whoever homestead uses. 

 

Not ever before has my data been misused right after I signed up. I have a private domain and I create a new email address for every site I sign up to. 

 

About 40 spam emails and 12 spam text messages since yesterday evening. 

 

Someone else told me he had the same problem, so that I would like to know: 

 

Are you selling our data? Or why did that never happen before?

Anonymous
Not applicable

Re: Are they selling our personal data???

Hi @wolke8,

 

That's a fair question, but the answer is probably a "Why would they need to?". It makes much more sense that Godaddy new customers are targeted because of the success of Godaddy. There is software out there that can spy on new registrants. You can and should report any spam to: for the US:

https://www.justice.gov/doj/spam

 

There are similar governmental bodies too for other countries. Just search for where to complain about spam.

If they get enough complaints about someone, they will close down their server, or account. It even happens here at Godaddy at times. There are quite a few who have been reported for spam, where godaddy has been proactive and closed their service.

 

If you can get a website domain from their email (without clicking any links of course), then turn their own weapons against them. Do a whois and you will find an 'abuse' email to send a message regarding abuse. Even if they try and hide behind privacy, the provider will have a ref number in there that identifies the person responsible.

Nobody can hide!! Be warned!! 

 

Or, for an easier time of it, just set up better spam filters on your inbox. 

New

Re: Are they selling our personal data???

Thank you for taking the time to read and comment. 

I have all sorts of spam filters set up (business email) but received about 20 more since I posted this complaint. 

I am reporting them via spamcop, but I will gladly look into your solution. 

Re: Frequent calls from telemarketers

Same. Phone calls, texts. I feel like everyone has my information (home address included)

Re: Frequent calls from telemarketers

This has worked very well for us and we have been in the business for some 18 years. We register all websites with a special email address like webmaster@yourdomain.com and set it up to only accept email from approved accounts like godaddy.com Our spam has dropped to next to nothing as has the problem for our clients that use his system too. 

The phone number that we provide goes to an Interactive Voice Response System (IVR) that we had set up by one of the technicians working at BestBuy. I don't believe BestBuy sold the product but the tech had previously set it up for his parents business and I was able to hire him to do the same for me. You can check it out here https://www.ivr-lab.com

The phone system was expensive but comes in very useful in other ways for our business. The email solution is free and all available on your server or with most third party email addresses like GMail and Outlook. 

Hope that helps and once you set up the email filters you will find many other uses for them too. 

Internet Marketing Firm 100% Veteran Owned and Staffed.
All members are Active Duty or Honorably Discharged Veterans of the United States or Canadian Military.

Re: Frequent calls from telemarketers

Its very easy to know which domain registrar a person used in the Whois record.  So it is easy to tailor the message to target the person like a GoDaddy customer.

 

A few of my domains I have to make my details public as part of owning the domain.  I do get spam directed at the contact details listed in the WhoIs record for those domains. Something I accept because it is part of doing business as a domain owner.

 

I edit the Whois information with an email address, phone number that is unique just for Whois records so my personal information is not listed on the Whois record.  That way my personal email, phone number and the like are not spammed by spammers trolling the Whois record database.

Re: Are They Selling Our Personal Data???

I am finding the exact same thing, I have had over 50 emails in 3 days and they are actually referring to the domain name so they definitely are getting all of the information they need to spam their services. It's so frustrating. Over the years I have had numerous domain names and never experienced this amount of spam before.

Thanks for all the spam and unsolicited phone calls GoDaddy!

So all I had to do was buy a service from you and you sold my info in less than 48 hours?

To make matters worse I've not even used the service yet... So, thanks a lot!  

 

I don't want hear pseudo reasons for why you're "not at fault". I've been a professional web/app developer for 16+ years and have personally owned/hosted domains for just as long and NEVER had I gotten spam or phone calls resulting from it. This is extremely annoying and I will make sure that I not only not recommend your company to anyone but also strongly advised against it. This is extremely disappointing.