Feeds

Man charged in $111k domain name theft

eBayed to basketball pro

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

A New Jersey man has been charged with stealing the p2p.com domain name and selling it to a professional basketball player for more than $111,000 in the first US indictment for domain name theft.

In May 2006, Daniel Goncalves, now 25, of Union City, illegally accessed accounts of domain name registrar GoDaddy "for the purpose of altering registration information for 'p2p.com,' to fraudulently transfer registration of 'p2p.com from its lawful registrant," according to the indictment, which was filed by the New Jersey Attorney General's office.

Once in possession of the domain name, Goncalves allegedly auctioned it on eBay, where it was purchased for $111,211.11 by Mark Madsen, a basketball player for the Minnesota Timberwolves, who was unaware of the theft allegations. P2p.com was the name of a business owned by three entrepreneurs, who maintain that the domain name was worth from $160,000 to $200,000 because of its short length and topical relation to peer-to-peer file sharing.

The case is a throwback to earlier days when domain names such as business.com and sex.com regularly fetched seven-figure prices. The most famous of those cases is the saga of sex.com, which was registered by Match.com founder Gary Kremen and later transferred to Stephen M Cohen. Following lengthy court proceedings, Kremen regained control of the name.

In the process, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled that domain name owners hold property rights.

The Attorney General's filing isn't clear about how Goncalves breached the GoDaddy account, but documents filed in US District Court in Newark in a private lawsuit may provide a clue. They claim Goncalves and a brother "developed a specialty hacking into AOL accounts and stealing user screen names" and "regularly participated in efforts to crack open the AOL accounts of others". ®

Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL

More from The Register

next story
Spies would need SUPER POWERS to tap undersea cables
Why mess with armoured 10kV cables when land-based, and legal, snoop tools are easier?
Early result from Scots indyref vote? NAW, Jimmy - it's a SCAM
Anyone claiming to know before tomorrow is telling porkies
Jihadi terrorists DIDN'T encrypt their comms 'cos of Snowden leaks
Intel bods' analysis concludes 'no significant change' after whistle was blown
TOR users become FBI's No.1 hacking target after legal power grab
Be afeared, me hearties, these scoundrels be spying our signals
Home Depot: 56 million bank cards pwned by malware in our tills
That's about 50 per cent bigger than the Target tills mega-hack
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
China hacked US Army transport orgs TWENTY TIMES in ONE YEAR
FBI et al knew of nine hacks - but didn't tell TRANSCOM
Microsoft to patch ASP.NET mess even if you don't
We know what's good for you, because we made the mess says Redmond
NORKS ban Wi-Fi and satellite internet at embassies
Crackdown on tardy diplomatic sysadmins providing accidental unfiltered internet access
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.