Update – Qntra has received a statement from Shane Murphy on behalf of digitalBTC regarding the bitcoin.com.au domain name.
Bitcoin.com.au has been inadvertently sold at auction via the Australian domain name drop catcher Netfleet at a price of AUD $36,300 or the equivalent of around USD $31,200. This marks the second time bitcoin.com.au has been sold in 2014, having been previously purchased at a price of USD $23,000 by Zhenya Tsvetnenko of Digital CC, the Australian company which trades as Digital BTC.
Digital CC IP Pty Ltd purchased the bitcoin.com.au domain name from Magna Fortis Pty Ltd (a company controlled by Zhenya Tsvetnenko) for US$23,000. The purchase amount was the cost to acquire the domain name by Magna Fortis Pty Ltd from a third party unrelated vendor.
It appears that Zhenya Tsvetnenko failed to update the WHOIS information upon completion of the sale. His name, while listed as the technical contact for the domain, was not added as the current registrant, with the previous owners details listed instead.
auDA, the organisation that administers the .com.au ccTLD have a strict eligibility criteria as to who can and cannot purchase a .com.au domain name. This makes it difficult for non-Australians or companies which don't operate in Australia to register a .com.au domain name. The criteria one must meet includes a current ABN2 or ACN3 and in this case, the previous owners ABN expired sometime in 2013. Yours truly can confirm that this is the case as I checked out the domain in early 2013, realised the ABN had expired and then spoke with the owner, warning him he risked losing the domain should he fail to renew his ABN. Since that time, the domain has been sold but the details remained unchanged, until today's auction.
As auDA do not actively check the veracity of registrant information, a popular tactic Australian domainers employ in order to secure premium domains is to look for ones which contain outdated or expired registrant details before lodging a complaint with auDA. auDA then cancel/policy delete the domain, allowing the domainer to bid on it via a drop catcher such as Netfleet or Drop.com.au, often at a reduced price than what the original owner may have been asking.
While there is an appeal process in which domain ownership can be contested, a three panellist committee costs AUD $5,000 and is non-refundable regardless of the outcome. auDA are not known for finding in favour of a complainant simply because they forgot to update the registrant details.
The WHOIS information now reads:
Domain Name: bitcoin.com.au
Last Modified: 25-Nov-2014 03:25:32 UTC
Registrar Name: Netfleet.com.au
Registrant ID: ABN 42385377332
Eligibility Type: Company
Registrant Contact ID: NFJXWOFCCD0WTDD
Registrant Contact Name: DOMENIC CAROSA
Registrant Contact Email: Visit whois.ausregistry.com.au for Web based WhoIs
Tech Contact ID: NFQ38C1IVEMO6JVL
Tech Contact Name: DOMENIC CAROSA
Tech Contact Email: Visit whois.ausregistry.com.au for Web based WhoIs
Name Server: dns1.netfleet.com.au
Name Server IP: 18.104.22.168
Name Server: dns2.netfleet.com.au
Name Server IP: 22.214.171.124