Rogue Internet pharmacies continue to cluster at the same handful of domain name registrars that provide a safe haven for their criminal activity. According to the latest data available, the registrars in our current Top 10 provide registration services for the largest numbers of rogue Internet pharmacies, with few changes from last month. All the domain name registrars currently in the top 10 were on last month’s list, though some have changed position. The Chinese companies TodayNIC and BizCN remain far ahead of the rest of the field.
As we look at this data monthly, it’s important to note the trend in which some domain names for websites engaged in illegal pharmaceutical sales hop from registrar to registrar until they find one that will not suspend and lock the domain name. About 80% of ICANN-accredited registrars have firm policies against unlicensed online drug sellers and respond to our abuse notifications. We frequently see domain names that are altered slightly — with a different TLD, different spelling or new branding (BestKusuri/BestKenko is a high-profile example of the latter) — and land at another registrar that will allow them to reopen for business. We track such domain names through the process and see them bounce back from being shut down by a compliant registrar until they choose one like those listed below, which look the other way.
The current Top 10 rogue registrars are:
6. GMO Internet Inc./Onamae
7. Momentous Group/Rebel.com
Early warnings: 1 & 1 and OnlineNIC continue to be friendly to rogue Internet pharmacy operators and have a significant number of rogue websites on their platforms.