Web domain scoundrel alert

It is not often I make  my gripes and moans public, but today – in the spirit of a public warning – I will make a rare exception.

During the past few weeks I have been watching a domain name I have been waiting to become available for about 12 years.

A few years back I wrote to its owner letting them know that should the day come when they no longer wanted it, that I would be a keen buyer. They were very nice, replying that they could never see a day when they wouldn’t want it and I jokingly suggested he leave it to me in their will. He was a nice chap.

Nevertheless, I would do periodic checks on the website and a few months back – to my surprise – it was off-line. Curiosity forced me to email the owner again to find out what had happened. The email bounced back. These were two clear signs the site was available to buy and so I started hunting to see how I could secure it.

I  saw the domain was available when it appeared on a web domain auction site. I was the first to bid on it about six weeks ago, but others followed until we were in the hundreds of dollars.

Then, out of the blue, an email arrived from a chap calling himself Derek Gardner. He told me he owned the domain I was bidding on and that the highest bid was currently US$1800.

The domain sold for far less than $1800. It turns out that ‘Derek Gardner’ (based in Jakarta) never owned the domain at all. He was one of the people I was bidding against on the legitimate auction.

So now someone else owns the domain for a modest price I would have happily paid for it. I am happy for them, but disappointed that I missed out due to the lies of a shyster.

No doubt ‘Derek’, using the email address dereksgardner@gmail.com will continue to prowl the web domain auction sites, making bids and then emailing potential owners with over-priced offers.

It turns out that had I agreed to pay ‘Derek’ US$1800 for the domain, he would have been safe in bidding  and pocketing the difference between what it sold for and the $1800 he was asking from me.

Should you ever be in a position of bidding on a domain name (or any other object) carry on bidding while the so called ‘owner’ produces evidence that they own what they are trying to sell you.

And for anyone who is interested, here is all I could dig up via a Google search about the low-life scoundrel known as ‘Derek Gardner’.

Real name: Not known

Address: Jl. Medan Merdeka Barat No. 21

Email: dereksgardner@gmail.com

Mobile phone (Jakarta): 021-30008652

Phone (Jakarta): 3605440447