Thursday, 6 March 2008

Sabotage:: Are Former employees stealing your Domain Names?

Brand Killer Robots reveal::
Dear Directors and Security Managers,

I am writing to you because I want to alert you (and others) to a challenge that I myself have encountered more recently in my capacity as a freelance Brand Protection Consultant in the UK. Basically, the story goes that a small insurance company who provide agency services to high-net worth clients in the US, had an issue with a website when they least expected it. In fact, one day the directors came into work to find that the website domain name no longer pointed at the website. This would have been less of a problem had the company not recently invested in a marketing campaign with the specific aim of driving new visitors to their website.

After the intial rants of who could have done it and who had the most to gain, everyone calmed down and called up the local website hosting company. Only to get the response that they only hosted the website and that another company appeared to hold the domain name. Upon further investigation it transpired that the domain name was in fact registered in the name of a former employee and ex Director of the company.

After some fairly frank exchanges between the Directors it further transpired that this individual was more likely to be acting maliciously and would have deliberately misdirected the domain in order to sabotage the business. In fact this was the worse kind of sabotage - this was premediated and calculated sabotage. Designed to have the maximum impact at the most important time for the company.

It took the directors 2 weeks to get the site back online, costing thousands in legal fees, at an unspecified cost to the brand and the company profit.

Advice being, always make sure that it isn't just the tangible things (like the keys to the company car) that are handed over at the time of directors departure. Also ensure that the intangibles are extracted too.

Are Former employees stealing your Domain Names?

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