The easiest way to manage domains

DNSimple makes the entire domain registration and management process as easy and hassle-free as possible. With thousands of users worldwide and new customers joining every day, DNSimple aims to make domain name systems (DNS) and domain registration straightforward and accessible for everyone.

However, by simplifying the entire domain registration process, DNSimple also opened themselves to various fraud attacks. They experienced a significant amount of card-testing fraud, where fraudsters used their site to quickly verify stolen credit card numbers. The relatively low cost and simplicity of buying a domain through DNSimple also made for cheap and immediate validation (or invalidation) of stolen credit cards. Additionally, they found fraudsters setting up phishing scams to steal user identity and account details using domain names purchased from DNSimple.


Abundant fraud without enough time to stop it

Initially, DNSimple didn’t have any fraud detection systems to prevent chargebacks or other types of fraud, and they were purely reactive in their fight against fraud. After receiving a chargeback, DNSimple would flag a user as fraudulent, but this reporting would only happen weeks or months after the actual transaction had processed. Following a barrage of chargebacks, they would attempt to identify any fraud patterns, but this exercise didn’t help in stopping the fraud that they were currently experiencing.

Additionally, DNSimple had the challenge of operating within a tight time window, constricting their efforts to actually stop fraud and recoup lost expenses. Because they acquired domains and services at the moment of customer order approval, DNSimple only had five days to determine if a transaction was fraudulent and act to recover the money lost in their purchase.


The simple way to catch complex fraud

Anthony Eden, founder of DNSimple, wanted a fraud prevention solution that would stop their chargeback problem, but he also wanted a solution that was fast to setup and wouldn’t require a significant investment in resources and capital. Upon looking into Sift, he found that the developer documentation was clear and that the integration process was incredibly simple.

He initially installed only the JavaScript snippet and started seeing immediate value, as Sift immediately highlighted connections between DNSimple’s users and identified fraudsters. After witnessing Sift’s efficacy and ability to ferret out fraud, Anthony began sending order and transaction data to Sift to improve the accuracy of Sift’s fraud predictions. Setting up the REST APIs to send this data and complete his integration only took him a few hours to fully roll out.

After implementing Sift, DNSimple could streamline their review process and manage fraud within their limited time window. They used the Sift Score as the primary method of prioritizing orders for review, allowing them to review the riskiest orders immediately and quickly process orders from good customers. By leveraging Sift’s console, DNSimple was also able to dig into user and order details to determine which users were actually fraudulent.

For Anthony, the most critical Sift feature is the ability to detect connections between various DNSimple users, which highlights fraud that isn’t obvious or easily detected. Sift’s Network Visualizations showcases these user connections and exactly how they are linked, making it easy for DNSimple’s team to investigate potential fraud. Additionally, whenever a new connection between users is detected by Sift, the solution automatically adjusts the relevant users’ Sift Scores, ensuring that DNSimple always has the most accurate and up-to-date fraud information.

Anthony Eden
“With Sift, there are so many mechanisms for detecting fraudsters, which allows us to be proactive in detecting and fighting fraudulent behavior”


Stopping fraud while delivering a great user experience

From the onset, DNSimple saw great results with Sift, which only improved in accuracy as time passed. By using Sift, DNSimple is now able to immediately identify fraudulent transactions, and they have reduced their chargeback rate by over 90%. Combining the power of Sift with manual reviews allowed Anthony to easily establish a fraud process that is both efficient and successful at stopping fraud. And the best part? DNSimple’s aggressive fraud prevention measures haven’t impacted customer experience at all. In fact, they’ve had zero fraud false positives so far, thanks to the power of Sift.

Anthony Eden
“Sift has been powerful at fighting fraud for DNSimple because they’re using the power of machine learning and data to supplement human intelligence.”