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Verio Halted From Using Register.com Database

Register.com, a Web address registrar, won a court victory yesterday against Verio Inc., a Web-hosting company accused of sending unsolicited marketing material to Register.com's customer database.

A federal judge in U.S. District Court in New York granted a preliminary injunction ordering Verio, Englewood, CO, to stop accessing Register.com's “whois” database, which is the company's customer file. The file is available to the public on the Web due to rules established by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, which regulates registrar companies.

The data in the whois file includes names, phone numbers and addresses of people and companies that have registered Web domain names with Register.com.

The judge also ordered Verio to stop making telemarketing calls and sending direct mail and e-mail solicitations to Register.com customers. In August, Register.com, New York, filed a complaint charging Verio with making telemarketing and direct mail pitches to its customers without its permission.

Verio later said it would voluntarily cease using Register.com's database for direct marketing purposes while awaiting the court's decision. A Verio spokeswoman did not return phone calls seeking comment.

Register.com said it began receiving complaints from its customers about Verio's solicitations in January this year. According to Register.com, Verio's direct marketing efforts led some customers to believe their personal information had been given to Verio.

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