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Taft Technologies and The Truth About Internet Lies

The way the Internet is designed and operates favors criminals and puts all of us at risk. It is remarkably easy to deceive and harm others online. Criminals can register domains (website names) with fictitious information, create malicious websites, and misrepresent themselves thanks to the lackluster governing organization called ICANN and its many reseller minions. ICANN is the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers with offices in Los Angeles, Washington, D.C. and other places around the world. In their own words ICANN says that they are “an internationally organized, non-profit corporation that has responsibility for Internet Protocol (IP) address space allocation, protocol identifier assignment, generic (gTLD) and country code (ccTLD) Top-Level Domain name system management, and root server system management functions.”  Simply said, they are the folks who make and enforce the rules for creating virtual worlds online that we all use in our digital lives. This is just one small story about an unidentified criminal group that is manipulating the Internet system because they can. Their front name is Taft Technologies but who they really are is impossible to say.

 

On June 27 and 28 TheDailyScam.com collected many scam emails from its honeypot email servers that seemed to come from different email addresses of the domains careerscamp.com and elitecareerspro.com.

1-Email list of careercamp and elitecareerspro

Below are two examples of the scam emails…

2-careerscamp-cable service 3-careerscamp-consolidate debt

 

The email above with the subject line “Reliable cable service is on its way” says that it is associated with www.business.com, a legitimate business, but this is simply not true. None of the links point back to business.com. Nor is it true that the email is associated with the company and address listed at the bottom of the email as “Gold Consultancy, 3005 Macbeth Creek Drive, Charleston, SC 29414-7146.” A search for this address on Google shows a residential home as well as many other links to fake emails that seem to be connected to a website called email-fake.com.   Were you aware that you can create fake email addresses that exist for only a short period of time and then disappear? If you need to send an email from a fake email account, no problem. There are many to choose from besides email-fake.com such as fakemailgenerator.com, deadfake.com, fakeinbox.com, stop-my-spam.com and others. We also found the exact same lies about the website and company “Talent Systems” displayed in the second email with the subject line “Consolidating debt services hand picked for you.” We checked with Google to see what it could tell us about careerscamp.com and found nothing. To Google, careerscamp.com didn’t exist. Google did find the other domain, elitecareerspro.com, but Google displayed very strange information for that website and the link to it didn’t work. Feel like your headed down a rabbit hole yet? We’re not done yet.

4-careerscamp Google search

5-elitecareerspro on Google

 

 

On June 29 we saw another burst of scam emails from the domain extendfurther.com. Each scam came from a different username and with different subject lines. Take a look at the three sampled scams below and you’ll know why these scams caught our attention.

6-extendfurther-list of email spam

7-extendfurther-Enjoy the active senior years 8-extendfurther-Make the most of new tires today 9-extendfurther-Make the most of wireless internet service

All of these scam emails clearly came from the same criminal gang using the same template. But we have no idea exactly who is responsible. We decided to dig further by using a WHOIS tool at ICANN.org to see who was listed with ICANN as the owner of these three domains. The WHOIS tool is supposed to display the registrants information used when they register the domain. (However any registrant can hire a proxy service to represent them and hide behind the proxy.)

Careerscamp.com was registered by Taft Technologies on July 31, 2014  http://whois.icann.org/en/lookup?name=careerscamp.com

Elitecareerspro.com was registered by Taft Technologies on August 18, 2014  http://whois.icann.org/en/lookup?name=Elitecareerspro.com

Extendfurther.com was registered by Taft Technologies on Sept 24, 2014  http://whois.icann.org/en/lookup?name=Extendfurther.com

This was promising but who is Taft Technologies? Again we used the ICANN WHOIS tool to explore Taft Technologies and learned the following…
http://whois.icann.org/en/lookup?name=tafttechnologies.com

 

Taft Technologies was registered through ENOM.com on May 7, 2015 (months after Taft Technologies registered the other domains) and has a website TaftTechnologies.com. From their website they claim to be a “domain name megastore.”

Name: TAFT TECHNOLOGIES
Mailing Address: 1313 N MARKET ST, SUITE 206, WILMINGTON DE 19801 US
Phone: +1.3024988294
Email: POSTMASTER@TAFTTECHNOLOGIES.COM

All four domain registrations (the three scam domains plus Taft) show the contact person as James Edwin of Taft Technologies in Wilmington, DE. The email for James is listed as jamesedwin@yandex.com. For those who don’t know, Yandex.com is a Russian Internet company that also provides free email services. A Google search for James Edwin and Taft Technologies together turns up nothing. But let’s examine their website, TaftTechnologies.com.

10-Taft Technologies main page 6-28-15

The building shown on their website is called the “Hercules” building located at 1313 N. Market Street in Wilmington, Delaware. This was confirmed for TheDailyScam by Jessica Bell of McConnell Real Estate Agency in Wilmington. McConnell Real Estate Agency represents the building owner in real estate transactions. Ms. Bell confirmed that there is no such business called Taft Technologies renting suite 206, or any other suite at that address.

 

A call to the phone number listed on their website, and listed in the WHOIS information, leads to a recording of a woman asking the caller to leave a message. You can listen to it here.

On the one hand, someone has gone to a lot of trouble to make people think that Taft Technologies is a legitimate business. And yet their About Us web page on June 28 looks like it was never completed. It’s as if they forgot to fill in the information.

11-Taft Technologies About Us 6-28-15

What about their business? They say they are the “domain name megastore” and even provide a search field on their web page to look up domain names to purchase. That field will search for domains alright, but not from Taft Technologies. We analyzed the code used to create the webpage and here’s the part we found that makes that domain lookup field work…

 < script > jQuery(document).ready(function($){ $("#wp-dn-search-4").on('submit', 'form.wp-dn-form', function (event) {       event.preventDefault(); $.ajax({ type: "GET",                                          url: "http://wpdn.nerdwarehouse.com/index.php?host=tafttechnologies.com/&domain="+ $('input[name="domain"]').val() +"&tld="+ $('select[name="tld"]').val() +"&registrar=DN&target=_blank&id=&callback=?",                                      async: false,                                       cache: false,                                       contentType: "text/json; charset=utf-8",                                            dataType: "jsonp",                                        crossDomain: true,                                 success: function(data, textStatus){           data.dnform = decodeURIComponent(data.dnform);                                                                        data.dnform = $.parseHTML(data.dnform);                                                                                  data.dnform = $(data.dnform).text().replace(/&nbsp;/g,' '); //console.log(data); $('#wp-dn-search-4').after( data.dnform ); $('form#'+data.id).submit();     } }) }); }); < /script >

If you look at the bolded portion, you’ll see that Taft Technologies is actually using Nerdwarehouse.com to look up your query and then return the results to you. We contacted NerdWarehouse.com (via GoDaddy.com, the parent company) and they informed us that Taft Technologies is not one of their resellers, nor registered or hosted with them. We asked ICANN on June 28 if Taft Technologies was a legitimate Registrar and licensed to sell domain names. Their response was uninspiring (and grammatically incorrect) but essentially confirmed what we already suspected…

 

“Thank you for contacting the GDD Customer Service Center.  [Note: GDD is the Global Domains Division.]

I have taken a look on TaftTechnologies.com I did not find any information that they mentioned they are a Registrar on their website and their website does not seems to be ready yet. If you wish to register a domain name with an accredited Registrar.
Please refer to the list of accredited Registrar via this link.
http://www.internic.net/regist.html

We hope this information was of assistance to you. Please contact us if you have additional questions.”

We did. We replied with “I thought that any online service that provides/offers domain names for lease is a "registrar" of domains and must be licensed by ICANN. Am I wrong about this? Because Taft Technologies.com says that the are the ‘domain mega store’ and provides domains.”

Their reply?

“There are also resellers providing services and selling domain names, they have contract with Registrar. It will be best to purchase your domain name with accredited Registrar.”

 It’s important for our readers to understand that these responses are coming from the Global Domains Division of the company tasked with making the rules that govern Internet names and the sale of those domains, and for policing and monitoring that the domain resellers play by the rules, assuming there are any rules.

 

We also contacted Nerdwarehouse with this question…

“I found a domain reseller named TaftTechnologies.com and they claim to be a ‘Domain Name Megastore’ but lack any contact info on their site. They invite users to look up domains through a form on their website to see if they are available. However, the ‘Find Your Domain’ field contains a form that pulls content from nerdwarehouse.com rather than their own site. Can you please tell me if Taft Technologies is a legitimate Registrar reseller of Nerdwarehouse?”

The response from Nerdwarehouse.com actually came from GoDaddy.com, their parent company…

“TAFTTECHNOLOGIES.COM is neither registered nor hosted with us. This is not a reseller of ours. Please address your concerns with the registrar on record which appears to be Enom.”

We called Enom and spoke to Derek in tech support who said that Taft Technologies was actually registered to one of Enom’s reseller’s called Namecheap.com. Are you still following this crazy spiral? It had us feeling as though we were chasing our tail. We contacted Namecheap.com’s tech support through a chat window. Can you guess what their response was?

12-NameCheap tech support chat 6-30-15

No one claimed to know who or what Taft Technologies was or seemed to care. Yet Taft Technologies has a phony website and seems to be responsible for pushing out scam emails to folks across the United States. Neither their hosting service nor domain registration service appears to have verified who they are. They certainly don’t seem to care that this company is a sham. And according to DomainTools.com, Taft Technologies registered 38 domains through Enom.com between July, 2014 and June, 2015. (http://reversewhois.domaintools.com/taft-technologies)

 

Should we expect the authorities in charge of controlling Internet names to be ethically responsible for protecting the rest of us from fraudsters, cheats and criminals? Overwhelming evidence suggests that they don’t. Not ICANN. Not Enom. Not Namecheap. And yet the public suffers at the hands of sophisticated criminals who act without fear of consequences. What resourse do we have after falling so deep down the rabbit hole to find nothing but fraud? Enom tech support told us that we can file a “WHOIS Inaccuracy Complaint Form” on the ICANN website. (http://www.thedailyscam.com/my-hacked-website-costs-you-money-and-no-one-cares/)

 

So who is Taft Technologies? They are just another criminal enterprise successfully preying on the rest of us because ICANN and the domain reseller system cares more about making a buck than it does for protecting citizens of the Internet.

Read our feature article at TheDailyScam.com titled “My Hacked Website Costs You Money and No One Cares.

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