A recent post pointed out that a large number of Coronavirus-related domain names have been registered in the past couple of months – and to be on the lookout for potential scams.
It is worth noting that this trend is not exclusive to .com’s and other global top-level domain extensions – the .ca namespace has also seen a number of similar registrations in recent weeks which can be found on various sales platforms.
The same level of vigilance should apply – as phishing attempts from sources using a .ca domain may tend to give Canadians a false sense of security.
Do contact CIRA if you feel you or a loved one has been taken advantage of during this pandemic through a suspect email or website operating behind a .ca domaim.
I have personally not come across a .ca scam site yet, but it may just be a matter of time.
A lookup of coronavirus.ca, corona-virus.ca, covid-19.ca and covid19.ca yielded that these domain names have indeed been registered recently – with one owner offering to rent out the use of his domain, while the other three are hoping for a sale.
Interestingly enough – the registrant of coronavirus.ca, gained some notoriety as a former GoDaddy employee who was discovered to have bid against customers on their own auction platform.
And it is GoDaddy that actually recently gained possession of the .com version of the domain – coronavirus.com, as part of their acquisition of Uniregistry and their vast domain portfolio.
It had previously been listed for sale at $244,400 USD – and to GoDaddy’s credit, the listing has since been removed, with the domain now forwarding to the World Health Organisation’s website.
Be safe and disregard any unsolicited emails from or linking to coronavirus related domains, regardless of the domain extension.
Should any of the above .ca domains end up being rented or purchased, do be skeptical of what they may end up being used for.
Visit official resources such as Health Canada or your local health authority’s website for information and guidance.