Hitting cybersquatters where it hurts most, Network Solutions Inc. Thursday announced a new pre-payment model requiring domain-name seekers to pay for their .com during online registration.
The current invoice system will no longer be available for most customers when the new policy is fully implemented in September.
“Credit card payments have become the industry standard on the Internet,
and it’s the right time to transition to this prepayment model,” said Jim Rutt, NSI’s chief executive officer.
NSI also expects the move to minimize speculator abuses, or cybersquatting, where individuals register Web addresses and take the names off the market but never pay the bill. The speculators then try to sell the name to the highest bidder.
The domain registrar will also set up a Business Account Program for qualified customers who apply for multiple Web addresses, such as ISPs and Web hosting services, and will continue to allow such companies to use the invoice system.
The company still leads the domain registration game, which was opened up to competition this summer after NSI lost a government-contracted monopoly it has held since 1993. So far, only two test bed participants have opened for business while the deadline for the test bed phase was pushed back a second time to Aug. 6.
NSI Thursday also announced its earnings, reporting that its new registrations were up 166 percent to 1.4 million and net revenue hit $47.5 million, up 132 percent.