It's a holiday in the US, so we're turning back the clock a bit.
How do you make sure nobody issues an unauthorized request for a domain transfer? This registrar has serious security to prevent just that kind of event. You know this must be a classic, because it involves fax machines.Original -- Remy
Security through obscurity is something we've all probably complained about. We've covered security by insanity and security by oblivity . And today, joining their ranks, we have security by letterhead.
John O'Rourkewrote in to tell us that as a part of his job, he often has to help clients transfer domain names. He's had to jump through all kinds of crazy hoops to transfer domain names in the past; including just about everything except literally jumping through hoops. After faxing in a transfer request and receiving a rejection fax an hour later, he knew he was in for a fight.
John called the number on the rejection letter to sort things out.
John: Yes, I'm calling to find out why request number 48931258 to transfer somedomain.com was rejected.
ISP: Oh, it was rejected because the request wasn't submitted on company letterhead.
John: Oh... sure... but... uh, just so we're on the same page, can you define exactly what you mean by 'company letterhead?'
ISP: Well, you know, it has the company's logo, maybe a phone number and web site address... that sort of thing. I mean, your fax looks like it could've been typed by anyone!
John: So you know what my company letterhead looks like?
ISP: Ye... no. Not specifically. But, like, we'd know it if we saw it.
John: And what if we don't have letterhead? What if we're a startup? What if we're redesigning our logo?
ISP: Well, you'd have to speak to customer-
John( clicking and typing ): I could probably just pick out a semi-professional-looking MS Word template and paste my request in that and resubmit it, right?
ISP: Look, our policy-
John: Oh, it's ok, I just sent the request back in on letterhead.
The transfer was approved. John smiled, having successfully circumvented the ISP's security armed with sophisticated hacking tools like MS Word templates and a crappy LaserJet printer.
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