NameSilo

More Fraudulent Bidding Activity at DropCatch.com

Located in Drop Catchers and Expired Domain Services started by Arca, Oct 28, 2017.

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  1. Arca

    Arca Top Member VIP

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    DropCatch.com just can't get rid of fraudulent bidding activity on their platform. Fraudulent bidders bid up prices, don’t pay when they win, and then the names are re-auctioned again and again until a legit bidder wins.

    It is a win-win system for DropCatch. If the fraudulent bidders bid up a legit bidder, DC cash out even more thanks to the fraudulent bidder driving up the price beyond where it would have gone with only legit bidders. If the fraudulent bidder wins, they simply hold and re-auction the name over and over until they get a legit bidder that pays. It's a problematic system for regular bidders, because before these fraudulent bid handles get suspended, they bid up legit bidders in various auctions.

    DropCatch's system enables them to get paid for names even with so many fraudulent non-paying bidders on their platform. But even with this auction restarting system in place, there are simply so many fraudulent bidders that they sometimes struggle to find a legit winner, despite multipe re-auctions. Take CannaMarket.com. The domain has already been won by THREE DIFFERENT fraudulent bidders. The first winner, in the original auction, was fraudulent. The name was re-auctioned. The second winner was fraudulent. The name was re-auctioned. The third winner was fraudulent (he bid the name up to $4K). When a name can score a triple fraudulent bidder combo streak on their platform, with no legit winner in sight, it’s clear that there is something wrong with how their system works. They are currently holding cannamarket.com in a dropcatch.com holding account, and I wonder whether they will try to re-auction the name a fourth time, or just let it drop since this is obviously a bad look for them when three out of three attempts of auctioning off the name ended up with fraudulent bidding activity (and who is going to be brave enough to bid against all the fraudulent bidders in a fourth auction? This name is apparently a fraud magnet).

    Then there was this auction for lumeo.com recently (it was bid up to $14K by a bidder that most likely is fraudulent, and the winner has not yet paid, and the payment deadline passed a few days ago). How long until this name gets re-auctioned due to fraudulent bidding activity?

    I often get emails from dropcatch saying "due to complications involving potentially fraudulent activity, the following auctions you had participated in are being restarted". A quick search shows an inbox full of emails notifying me of fraudulent bidding activity and auctions being restarted:
    M.png

    I just received another one today. It contained another SEVEN auction names that closed recently with fraudulent bidding activity:

    cybercorp.com - Sold for $1251
    sefin.com - Sold for $665
    devlog.com - Sold for $343
    thermair.com - Sold for $457
    simplypretty.com - Sold for $515
    finte.com - Sold for $350
    kinovo.com - Sold for $330

    All these auctions involved fraudulent bidding, and have now been restarted (you can go to dropcatch.com and bid on them right now). A quick visit to the dropcatch.com website shows a other restarted auctions as well, such as for evinite.com (sold for $142) and acercloud.com (sold for $370). Will legit bidders win these restarted auctions this time around?

    DropCatch.com is very much like a game of hot potato, where fraudulent bidders bid up auctions and don't pay when they come out winning. There is a significant amount of auctions being restarted due to winners not paying up, when compared with other expired domains auctions platforms. The result is that legit bidders have to pay, literally, for the presence of so many fraudulent bidders on this platform that bid up the prices for legit bidders. Just an advice for everyone to be aware of this issue when participating in auctions at dropcatch.com.
     
    The views expressed on this page by users and staff are their own, not those of NamePros.
  2. creataweb

    creataweb Some Guy with Awesome Senior High School Photo VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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  3. atinc

    atinc Entrepreneur VIP

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    Glad I am not their customer.
     
  4. mr-x

    mr-x Acme Domains Gold Account VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    The real question, is dropcatch.com behind the fraudulant bidding or just exploiting it.
     
  5. tonyk2000

    tonyk2000 Top Member VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    I beleive what is happening is a natural side effect of "open auctions" system dropcatch knowingly developed, namely:

    The same "Jennifer"s that are spamming pendingdelete domains as their own domains for sale ("My name is Jennifer, I am contacting you because I have found out that you have a similar domain name")
    are expanding their so-called business by simply A) grabbing current open auctions list B) trying to win something @ any price C) trying to sell it to the same victims that "have similar domains" during 4-5 days.
    If they found a victim - dropcatch is paid, if they did not find anybody - dropcatch is not paid.

    Is it still 4-5 days period dropcatch allows to pay?

    I see no solution here. Will dropcatch stop doing open auctions? Never. Will "jennifer"s disappear? Very unlikely, unless something happens with internet connectivity and/or legal environment, including international law enforcement, in developing countries where most of these Jenniefs are located at.

    It would be good idea for DropCatch to start asking users to pre-fund accounts and allow bidding with pre-funded funds only. Or, to switch from open auctions model to closed model. In either case, their profits will go down. I beleive that going to closed model will have less negative $$$ effects though.

    But, dropcatch is not asking us what to do, and I highly doubt they will.
     
  6. BML

    BML Established Member

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    Why should they do anything if they benefit from that system. There is no way to totally eliminate fake bidders but there are ways to make their fakery as hard as possible.
     
  7. mr-x

    mr-x Acme Domains Gold Account VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Because it's corrupt, hurts their brand and encourages competitors to build a better product.
     
  8. BML

    BML Established Member

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    I agree but until they loose critical number of customers and their profit starts to plummet they won't do anything.
     
  9. Arca

    Arca Top Member VIP

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    Two more actions got restarted today as the winning bidders on Oct 19 turned out to be, you guessed it, fraudulent/non-paying:
    WeForce.com - Sold for $665
    FoodBall.com - Sold for $760
     
  10. Arca

    Arca Top Member VIP

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    Excellent suggestions. A closed auction system would surely result in less fraudulent bidding activity (as these fraudulent bidders are often late-comer bids who did not backorder the domain in the first place). But is DropCatch committed enough to end fraudulent bidding to make this change?

    To limit bidding to pre-funded account funds is another great idea. Perhaps let people bid up to a total of $500 across different auctions (a total of $500 across different auctions, not up to $500 in each individual auction), and then only permit bidding of more than a total of $500 if you have already added the funds to your namebright account.

    This would certainly eliminate non-paying bidders. All these fraudulent $5,000, $10,000, etc. bids would be history if they made this change. Implementing this seems like an easy decision, and considering their terrible track record with fraudulent bidding and non-paying bidders, they should really take this simple step to strengthen the credibility of their platform.
     
  11. DropCatch Support

    DropCatch Support Member DropCatch.com

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    We absolutely will NOT be waiting until we loose critical numbers of customers to address this. We value customer feedback and we hear your concerns. We are exploring additional methods of verification to help us reduce the number of re-auctions on our platform. While we might not be able to completely prevent re-auctions our goal is to keep the numbers as low as we possibly can. Customer feedback is always welcomed through PM or direct email at [email protected] for questions, concerns, or comments you may have.
     
  12. Aliast

    Aliast Established Member

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    What if we don't want to use a pre-fund system? Doesn't look like a great idea to me. Better ask for a valid credit card at the registration. Indeed, no one like to leave money on an account, especially for non regular customers.

    Regarding the security, how can fake bidder win an auction above 60$ since the verification process require a valid ID/Passport?
     
  13. tonyk2000

    tonyk2000 Top Member VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    In many countries one can purchase dozens of prepaid cards, and mentioned "Jennifer"s have big families, and many friends, saying nothing that purchasing fake ids in bulk will be as easy for them as they are now purchasing pre-registered and verified google / yahoo mail accounts for regular spam.
     
  14. tonyk2000

    tonyk2000 Top Member VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Unfortunately, it would be only a matter of time to find out that increased verification of new members would not solve the problem.
     
  15. Arca

    Arca Top Member VIP

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    Just in! More fraudulent bidding at DropCatch.com:

    lumeo.com
    - Sold for $14,072 on 21.10.2017 - winning bidder was fraudulent, auction has just been restarted. The person who won the auction joined late - so this could have been avoided if dropcatch had closed auctions, like namejet/snapnames. A legit bidder almost paid $14K for this thanks to the fradulent one! Stay alert when bidding on DropCatch against all these scamsters that roam free in their auctions, and don't lose sight of the real value of the names they catch. Other people "seeing value" in a name and bidding on it means nothing on this platform, because these bidders often turn out to be fraudulent)

    lithovit.com Sold for $120 on 21.10.2017 - winning bidder was fraudulent, auction has just been restarted

    magicidea.com Sold for $340 on 21.10.2017 - winning bidder was fraudulent, auction has just been restarted
     
  16. DropCatch Support

    DropCatch Support Member DropCatch.com

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    DropCatch values the integrity of our auction platform and are doing absolutely everything we can to prevent re-auctions by increasing the security of our site. We hear our user’s concern regarding reauctions on our platform, and fraudulent bidding and we want to ensure you that we are continuously working toward improving our security.

    In the month of October only 1.7% of dropping domain auctions on DropCatch resulted in reauction.

    DropCatch requires all users submit a valid government issued ID to begin the verification process. Once submitted our customer support team reviews accounts for various factors to determine if the user should be allowed to participate in auctions. The verification standards and processes are always changing and evolving as we identify new behaviors, trends, and attempts at verification of multiple accounts. DropCatch denies verification of all suspect accounts preventing the user’s ability to participate in auctions.

    Domains that are left in an unpaid state past the grace period of the cart or auctions that DropCatch identifies as potentially fraudulent are reauctioned to ensure the auction is legitimate, accurate, and fair. To be clear, we don’t like re-auctions any more than our users. We take nonpayment and fraudulent behavior on our site very seriously.

    We appreciate customer feedback and always welcome questions or comments through PM or email direct at [email protected]
     
  17. imadoer

    imadoer Top Member PRO VIP

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    @DropCatch Support you guys should offer us a week or month where huge domains or any partner affiliate is out of the discount backorders. How about some domainer appreciation? After all this madness. I was a bidder on a few of these domains. I didn't understand why they went so high. I been felt cheated by dropcatch and hugedomains im so sick of it. Ill try to avoid you guys
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2017
  18. main

    main Top Member VIP

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    @DropCatch Support Thanks for participating in the discussion. First of all, I appreciate that you re-auction domains as some other places don't do that. However, 1.7% is still high. It is not only about non-payment by auction "winners", but also about these same fraudulent bidders artificially inflating prices for your legitimate customers.

    An example mentioned is what if the fraudulent bidder had stopped one bid short on lumeo.com and the 2nd highest bidder would have actually won. That person would have unfairly paid thousands of dollars extra. DropCatch benefits but costs go up for domain buyers. Surely this is happening in other auctions. It would be short-sided to ignore this issue.

    The frustration with DropCatch is real on several fronts: fraudulent bidders, Partner trumping discount orders where investors feel DropCatch is "stealing" ideas, and open auctions. There are so many domain investors I've talked to that have simply given up using DropCatch.

    I think having closed auctions for at least domains with 3 backorders or less would alleviate the frustration by many that I talk to. There are some of us spending lots of time researching the drop only to see domains go to auction with just 2 or 3 bidders. Then a handful of people with deep pockets snatch up a huge percentage of these domains. It leaves things disproportionate and creates frustration. So many domain investors have stopped using DropCatch because of this.

    Even though I think it seems counter-intuitive, DropCatch might actually make even more money by having closed auctions for domains with 3 or less backorders because so many more people would participate.

    Please consider this.
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2017
  19. wwwweb

    wwwweb Top Member VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Ok, here is the thing, these fraudlent bidders are costing us in their crossfire.

    Cannamarket.com closed aug 6th, high bidder was wittynut, he got carried away in bidding, and did not pay. This domain still has not settled to this day in November almost.

    Wittynut was on a tear bidding on so many names during this time.

    This fake sale is now indexed in namebio also.

    Why would they do anything about it, this is great, these ghosts come bid up the names, they make tens of thousands extra in a day, it is the american dream. A few weeks later another ghost, rinses, and repeats.

    I have very little confidence in the dropcatch.com process these days, it is just to wild wild west. A fool and their money theory.

    Who is going to pay $14K for Lumeo.com when Novartis has a TM on the word, a $200B corporation who is one of the most active filers of UDRP's.
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2017
  20. Arca

    Arca Top Member VIP

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    Based on the number of restarted auctions in .com I am seeing, this number seems very low for .coms (I assume all the dropcaught .org, .cc, and other less commercially valuable extensions with little incentive for fraudulent bidding bring down this percentage). I have already posted info about 14 (!) restarted .com auctions, and I just started this thread a few days ago. Based on how many .com's you send to auctions, this is already more than 1.7% for october, so your number seems really off for .com alone.

    Regardless of the low percentage platform wide, the number of .com auctions with fraudulent activity is certainly above what is tolerable.

    Also, this percentage you have provided also only tells half the story, and is misleading in terms of the bigger picture of what is going on here. Because all these would-be fraudulent bidders might bid up a dozen auctions before they actually win one (and don't pay). One bidder can do a lot of damage before they get deemed fraudulent, and this damage is not reflected in giving a percentage of how many auctions were not paid for. The ones paid for by legit winning bidders, with second and third highest bidders that later turned out to be fraudulent bidders that would not have paid had they won, are the ones costing us money, and it is this activity is the biggest issue here.
     
  21. wwwweb

    wwwweb Top Member VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Why has cannamarket.com not been paid 3 times in a row? Maybe after 3 non payment auctions they will have a closed auction with legit bidders, lol.
     
  22. Arca

    Arca Top Member VIP

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    Another great suggestion, along with the other suggestions of closed auction formats and of limiting higher bid amounts to pre-funded account funds - lots of great suggestions for @DropCatch Support - but will we see any changes?
     
  23. wwwweb

    wwwweb Top Member VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Well I was being a bit sarcastic in 3, but if the first auction goes unpaid, having a closed auction for the second round. The example given above shows the dropcatch platform is being manipulated, and not much is being done about it.

    Watch one of these big Korean bidders get bit, and start a lawsuit, then they might take notice.
     
  24. Arca

    Arca Top Member VIP

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    NameJet makes names with more than 3 backorders public to everyone (also via API), and keep those with 3 or less private/hidden from the view of other during pre-drop period.

    So asking dropcatch to send domains with 2-3 backorders to private auctions, and send the ones with 4 or more to private auctions seems like a reasonable suggestion to me. The frustration with dropcatch outlined by @main is certainly real.
     
  25. tonyk2000

    tonyk2000 Top Member VIP ★★★★★★★★★★

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    Indeed. First, I used DropCatch for my day-to-day backordering needs and participated at their auctions. However, at some point of time, I started backordering @ dropcatch with a sole purpose to make sure that the domain(s) I preordered would not go to hugedomains, and, if and only if I am the only bidder, will go to my portfolio @ min. backorder price. So I no more bothered to to check auction status, and never bidded, on domains that were sent to auctions. Later, I became too lazy and stopped using DropCatch even with this minimalistic scenario.
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2017

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