InTrust Domains: Is It a Scam?

Lots of people appear to be asking “is InTrust Domains a scam?”.

You can decide for yourself in a moment. Ever get one of these emails?

Below is some handy advice on how to cut them out & save $1000s when acquiring domains.

This won’t be news for domainers or others well versed in WHOIS spam, but hopefully will save some regular people a little hassle & a lot of money.

What’s Going On?

InTrust Domains contacted me regarding a ‘similar’ (read: near identical) domain for sale.

InTrust Domains were very concerned that I should hear that the .COM would soon be available for sale. As such, they spammed me via my WHOIS info.

However, InTrust Domains did not own the .COM domain. Yes, you read correctly.

I own the .NET, somebody else owned the .COM – but the .COM registration had lapsed and was about to drop.

That means anybody – you, me or hell even “Arthur Simmons” – would be free to register it once the registration lapses.

Reread their pitch email – they don’t offer to sell it to me, or say they own it. They merely ask if you are interested in it.

I’ve no idea what InTrust Domain’s busines practices are. However, I’ve heard rumours of other unscrupulous companies using emails like this to decide which domains to dropcatch – and then trying to sell domains on for $1000s.

What Is Dropcatching?

When a domain registration lapses, it becomes available (after a period) for anybody to register. Dropcatching is the process of buying lapsed domains the moment they become available to re-register.

Since many people are often trying to reregister these domains – for traffic, backlinks or simple domain value – competition can be fierce.

That’s why you need to use a dropcatching service to snipe the domain for you the millisecond (literally) it becomes available to register again.

How to Dropcatch a Domain

There’s no need to pay Arthur Simmons or InTrust Domains $1,000s to do this – anybody can do it themselves, typically for c. $69.

#1. Join

#2. Backorder your desired domain before it drops. Minimum bid is $69.

#3. Cross your fingers & wait to hear if they catch the domain.

If others are also bidding on the same domain – as will happen with popular keywords – the domains enter an auction, starting at the top bid received pre-drop. If not – your base bid wins at $69.

I use SnapNames all the time, and the service is excellent. Good luck, and let me know how you get along in the comments.

  • Toemailer says:

    Sounds like a scam to me, perhaps legal and dropcatching may even be thought of as fair market to some, but there is not a shred of ethics involved, not the sort of thing I would be bragging about, unless I hung out with thieves.

  • Bill Smith says:

    It seems like Ken Palm of “Intrust Domain Names” or “Intrust Domains” is rebranding as “Domain Match Makers”.

    Both entities are owned by the same parent company “Domain Names International”. All 3 companies are connected to Ken Palm (also Kenn Palm or Kennon Palm).

    Is this related to the number of negative posts, reviews and complaints regarding Intrust Domains or Intrust Domain Names? Domain Match Makers seems to be a new separate company although the BBB review on their homepage links to the BBB profile of Intrust Domains.

    Coincidentally (Kennon, Kenn or Ken Palm) the owner of “” recently listed the domain name for sale at

    If you search Google for ”domain match makers” you’ll see a number of self issued, paid press releases recently issued by Ken Palm, Intrust Domains and/or Domain Match Makers. The press releases reference the “Denver Children’s Hospital Courage Classic”, talking about how Ken Palm and Domain Match Makers are big supporters. Some people, as a proactive reputation management technique, will issue press releases on themselves with positive associations, so when people Google you company, good positive stories float to the top. These paid, self issued press releases are found on Titles and phrases found on these press releases and blog posts include “Help Children by Choosing Domain” and “Domain Match makers announces support for Orphans Hope” and “Changing the lives or orphans”. Why would a company do that? Well, when you’re solicited to buy a domain name from a unknown entity, you’re going to Google their company name to check them out. When the search results include a bunch of soft and fuzzy search results about helping orphans, children and charities, you’re going to assume they are trustworthy. Leveraging the positive association of charity or cause is a common tactic for proactive reputation management.

    The press releases for “Domain Match makers” is filled with phrases like “Domain Match Makers heart touches its community” and “Domain Match Makers demonstrates leadership”.

    Google the phrases “intrust domains” or “intrust domain names “intrust domain scam” and see how the results differ greatly from “Domain Match Makers”.

    Domain Names International is the parent company of both “Intrust Domain Names” and “Domain Match Makers. They share the same addresses. Ken Palm (or Kenn Palm ?) is associated with all three.

    (office location)
    Domain Names International, Intrust Domain Names & Domain Match Makers
    11590 Black Forest Rd, Unit 30
    Colorado Springs, CO 80908

    (legal and mailing address)
    Domain Names International, Intrust Domain Names & Domain Match Makers
    11605 Meridian Market View #124-134
    Falcon, CO 80831

    Thoughts anyone?

  • EEMargolin says:

    Intrust Domains is a scam! After doing extensive research, they change their officer names and addresses pretty frequently. They contacted me about a domain similar to mine that was coming up for sale and so I was mildly interested. The domain was available for “$97” according to their bidding option, but by then I was already doing a Google search on their scam and found plenty of warnings.

    They sent a congratulatory email saying I won the auction and that I should click on the website of the domain and that if I see an order form, I can place the payment online or call them. Well, guess what…all that’s there was a “page does not exist” warning. I called them out of curiosity and their phone number in Colorado picks up immediately with an automatic greeting that start halfway into the recorded greeting. Unprofessional and fishy.

    I looked up the domain on WHOIS and found that it’s actually for sale for “$69” and found the following information:

    Date Registered: 03/26/11
    Date Modified: 03/28/11
    Expiry Date: 03/26/13
    DNS2: CALL.303-800-0310.COM

    Mark Peters
    Wesley Hayes
    Hollandse kade 7a
    Abcoude, (NL)
    1391 JD

    Administrative Contact
    Rose McCaige
    11605 Meridian Market View #124-134
    Falcon, CO (US)

    So if won the auction on 3/27/11, why was it registered a day earlier for two years? Does that strike anyone else as suspicious?

    I also got two calls today from “Mark” at Intrust Domains who basically encouraged me very kindly to “pay now” on his voice mail message to me.

    One thing that should be glaringly obvious to everyone is the rather cheesy setup for their site and rather unprofessional emails. The site is clearly set up by someone who knows basic HTML and nothing else, using “Free Use” photos that make them look really pathetic. Compare them to WHOIS, Godaddy or any other notable domain registry and they look both incompetent and pathetic.

    After reading about their scams and weird business operation…and the fact that it’s hard to pin them to any specific country in which they operate, then anyone getting duped by them at this point deserves to lose their money…no offense to anyone who got fooled by them earlier.

    There are too many obvious signs that they’re a scam company, and far too many posts about them online to complain that there was no way to know.

    If you want to back-order a domain, do it through a legitimate site that has a strong presence and reputation. Would you buy a car from Earl the Car Guy? Hell no. Why would you buy from “InTrust Domains”? As someone said earlier, don’t trust anyone who immediately tells you to trust them.

    Oh, last note…what kind of idiotic organization sends an email saying, “To check our business references, please refer to the Better Business Bureau.” That implies you don’t have much credibility in the first place.

  • Will says:

    Yeap, Definitely a scam. Intrust domains tried to sell me a domain that I actually registered for in Feb 2008. I was new to info marketing then and registered for a “free website” and then they wanted to charge me for hosting. I said no to the high hosting fee and then I couldn’t get the domain name back. I watched the who is list and when it expired they would renew it for 2 years. Same thing happened in Feb 2010, they renewed right at expiration. Funny thing is that they renewed it in 2010 for 2 years, meaning it expires in 2012, and they just offered it to me at the end of March 2011. How can they offer it to me mid-2011 if it doesn’t expire until 2012??? Also they just sent me today one of those “go to the website and fill out the form” voice messages, claiming that the domain just expired 20 minutes ago. Who IS CLEARLY showes that it doesn’t expire until Feb of 2012. Scam all the way, for sure!!!

  • Marco Castillo says:

    Humm I received a similar email like the one you presented. But I have my domain. Now IntrustDomains is owned by Epik ( Look at the notice
    I just reviewed my account in epik and I owned the domain that Intrust selled to me.


  • Adam says:

    I don’t like the emails they send out, but in the past I bought a domain from them that I really wanted. I was able to talk them down to the price I wanted to get it at. Smooth transaction and after 90 days (ICANN Rules) I was able to transfer the domain to my godaddy account without issue. In that aspect they are no scam at all.

  • Jeff says:

    I just received an offer from them for a .com site that I already have and .net .au. I was suspicious but registered my interest. Then I googled them and found this blogg. When I registered interest in a bid @ $60 it said the minimum bid is $100 so I then indicated an interest at $100 and it said I would have to bid $435. I wrote them a message saying that the domain name was worth no more than $100 in Australia (prob more like $20).
    Of course I would search the domain name first before paying a strange company. The world is full of scammers and most of them probably live in the USA lol

  • Peter says:

    Hi, I have come across a domain that I am interested and it’s currently on redemption period. It’s registrar is which I believe is related to
    Since is acquired by should I contact epik to sell the domain to me or should I wait for the domain to drop and snap it up with snapnames, or pool? I did a search on and have found many bad reviews about them, I worry that if I contact, they would quickly register the domain and will try to sell it for me at inflated price.

    Any advise would be appreciated,


  • PF says:

    They sent me an email WRT a domain that I did want. However it seemed fishy that they were going to auction it off. I know there would be limited appeal for the name, so I immediately thought that the auction would be rigged in some way with shill bidding, etc.

    I started investigating and found this very useful page. It’s confusing to try to figure out exactly what their main company name is–InTrust Domains, Domain Names International, DNI Marketing, DNI Premium Names, Epik… Also the links went to a domain which forwarded to DNI’s site for the alleged auction. They have a huge BBB add on the home page which is also a bad sign to me. They might have this accreditation as a registrar with one of the company names, but then you’re dealing with a different company when you do an auction, for example. Who knows, it’s just fishy that it’s so front and center. They also list about 100 testimonials without any people’s names, only websites *without the link*. Again, fishy. I know I keep using the word fishy, but I’ve been around the block and I know the smell.

    SnapNames seems like they are a better company. They are definitely not cheap, but they are not too pricey if you’re serious about getting the best chance to snag a name. I’m going to check them out. Thanks for the information.

  • The One says:

    It seems they are also called, Domain Names International.

    When I told them that I read about them online and did not want to do business with them they sent me an auto email.

    It is funny that they get that reason enough to have an auto response to it.

    Here is the email they sent :


    I am sorry to hear that you read a few bad things about our company. Please allow me to address your concerns.

    We are a very large company. We sell about 10,000 domains a month. A portion of those domains are people who originally owned the domain and didn’t pay the renewal fee in time and disregarded the notices that their domain was going to be deleted if they did not take action. They come to us, not understanding why they can’t just have their domain back.

    Another portion of those customers are people who wanted a domain and back-ordered it with godaddy back-order or snapnames. We have the same software as they do to acquire domains.The truth is we are better at it than they are.These people are upset because they depended on a back-order service to get the domain for them.

    There is still a small amount of people who don’t really understand what it means to buy a domain from a private party and instead of asking questions, take the approach that it is wrong.

    Lastly, our competitors know the best way to destroy an Internet business (and give them a bigger portion of the market) – is through blogging on the Internet.

    With that said, considering the high volume of business we handle on a monthly basis, and the industry we work in, our negative comments are rather quite minimal.

    I assure you that once you make payment for this domain either by paypal, bank wire, check, or credit card, you will receive the domain immediately. There is no waiting period. The WHOIS is also updated with you as the owner.

    You can verify we own the domain by looking it up in any Whois egistry.

    Secondly you can go directly to (domain Removed) and you can purchase it on our secure site (you can tell it is an encrypted site because it says https:// instead of http://

    We are also willing to complete the transaction via if you desire to do so.

    I hope this information helps give you some assurance that we are who we say we are, and we are worth doing business with.


    Sales Team
    Domain Names International
    11605 Meridian Market View #124-134
    Falcon, CO 80831
    (303) 800-0310

  • Barn says:

    I tried to contact us. I chat with them.
    After a while, they say to me that I bid on it also I have to buy it or I’ll have “legal action” against me. I don”t subscribe on their site, they SPAM me like you all.
    Don’t waste your time with them like my 5 minutes chating with this dumb marketting company.

  • Yosh says:

    Here is a tip: if you are really interested in acquiring the domain DO NOT CLICK THEIR LINkS in the email. Their link has a tracking code/id on it and will flag the domain as “user is interested” in their database, and then they will probably try to register it when the redemption period ends…

    And yes, these guys are scammers.

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