Over the years I’ve had domains registered with various registrars and I still have domains with like 5-6 registrars because it’s almost impossible to consolidate them into one. Some don’t offer country specific TLD’s like .ro or .es and some offer those, but for three times the actual price.
So at some point I decided to bring all domains that could be brought to Porkbun since they seemed cool enough and had decent pricing with fairly good offers from time to time.
It all went well and was all fun and games until at some point I wanted to add some more IPs on my Glue records as I was trying to increase the DNS redundancy, lower the response times and provide the domains under my portfolio with a higher DNS availability overall.
So I went into the domain management panel of Porkbun and tried to update the Glue records, but for some reason, due to their buggy interface the changes wouldn’t stick, or at least they were not showing as updated.
Therefore, I decided to simply delete the old Glue records and re-create them with all IP’s old and new in order to try to make the changes stick. Big mistake! Removing the Glue records triggered some automatic process inside Porkbun that reset all the nameservers on all domains that were using those Glue records to some crap random nameservers of Porkbun basically fucking over the DNS of over 100 domains at that time.
I was intrigued, and although I started setting back the records manually on all domains I had access to, a small percentage were not managed directly by me and had to be updated by third parties, I opened a ticket asking them what happened.
Their support agent explained that this was normal behaviour, as their system knows best and simply ignores even the SOA TTL from the DNS zone.
I should’ve learned the lesson and move away critical infrastructure domains, but didn’t do so at that time.
This weekend, apparently they sent an email Saturday night referencing that the very same domain managing the nameservers and having the Glue records for my DNS infrastructure was queued for suspension.
I missed that email as I have better things to do on a Saturday night and definitely could not see it as an actual warning because it wasn’t market as high importance or otherwise.
The email also does not explain why they are taking this action. They reference a violation of their agreement, but there’s no clear statement of what happened.
There was no follow-up either since if you miss the original email you might get the follow-up right?
I worked a lot with this kind of things to know how important an email or phone follow-up is. But they don’t work that way. They are simply incompetent.
The domain eventually got suspended last night, shortly after they sent another useless email:
I woke up two hours later to the entire DNS infrastructure being down.
Fortunately I had a backup plan for this and switched everything to the backup DNS setup.
In less than one hour all the critical domains were up, in less than 4 hours more than half of the domains were up and within 6 hours approximately 90% of them were back. The rest were either with crap NIC’s like the red.es or rotld.ro and needed more time to propagate or were not that important to be updated as soon as possible.
As you’ve probably imagined by now there was absolutely no way of getting in touch with Porkbun. Their support was closed, and their domain management panel had no details whatsoever as far as the suspension is concerned and no way of getting the domain unsuspended.
When their staff woke up and started working most of the domains were already passed over to the redundancy but even so I was furious because I did not have answers. A domain used only for DNS purposes, redirecting to another domain was suspended for a supposed breach of terms without a clear statement or proof of that breach.
So I tried to chat with them and get answers but all I got was a reference that the domain was suspended for supposed phishing and that their abuse staff would get back to me shortly.
It’s been over 8 hours, and they haven’t gotten back to me.
I checked my email thoroughly for any other abuse reports since I’m used to getting abuse reports at hosting level when my customers get hacked, but there was none.
Also, abuse reports going at registrar level are very, very rare, and they occur when the hosting provider does not cooperate. But again, this is not the case.
So I checked the domain on all know abuse databases, but all returned the same response. The domain and associated IP are clean, there’s no known reported abuse.
If there were any confirmed and reported abuse it would have obviously been taken care of.
But with Porkbun there’s no transparency. There’s no forwarded abuse report, no proof of actual abuse, nothing. Just an abusive suspension.
Few hours ago since they were still not providing any info in the ticket and weren’t unsuspending the domain either I left them a review on Trustpilot as they seem to be very proud of their reviews. I also made sure they can verify that the review is legit, and I am not making things up just to damage their image.
Their marketing/PR replied there swiftly because their public image is more important than customer support. The reply contains some absurd explanation concerning the first issue I had with them, but never had with other registrars and also a reference of “not my fucking problem” as far as the current issue is concerned.
But you guessed it, the ticket is still not answered, and the case is still not clarified, almost three hours after the marketing/PR stepped in on Trustpilot.
Oh, and one more thing.
They have a functionality that supposedly allows you to download a CSV file of all your domains with their corresponding auth codes. I tried that since I want to move everything out of Porkbun. They are not trustworthy or reliable enough for me to keep my domains with them.
I clicked on the button, got the email with the download link and ended up with a 404 page since the download link doesn’t generate anything.
At first, I believed my case was an isolated one, but as I researched further I found even weirder stories with people purchasing a fresh domain and getting it suspended the next day. Or people that got their domains suspended for supposed spam that actually turned out to be spoofing.
To sum everything up, Porkbun seems to be understaffed and run by incompetent morons which is bad for business and even though they will probably sort this out sooner or later, I do not wish to continue with them. There are far better registrars out there with slightly expensive rates but better customer support and less abusive approaches.