Opportunists Buy Website Domain Names

Opportunists are trying to cash in on domain names Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak as rumors of a challenge to the Conservative leadership swirl.

As Boris Johnson faces a potential vote of no confidence in his leadership, website addresses offering puns on bookmakers’ favorites to take over as Prime Minister are being marketed online for nearly £90,000 each.

“Inlizwetruss.com”, and its variant “.co.uk”, was registered by a mystery shopper towards the end of last year.

The Foreign Secretary, whose team confirmed they were not involved in buying the domain names, has asked Mr Johnson to stay in Downing Street but will not rule out a leadership bid if the Prime Minister is ousted.

The two website addresses, which were registered on December 29, 2021, are being sold through GoDaddy, Britain’s largest web hosting company, for £88,000 each.

A company insider confirmed that the domain names were deliberately purchased to be put on the resale market and that the prices charged for them were “crazy”.

“When a person whose name gets high profile, that domain name can make a lot of money,” they added.

A mystery shopper also took over “rishiforleader.com”, as well as the “.co.uk” version, last week.

Mr Sunak, chancellor and favorite to replace Mr Johnson, is renowned for his political branding, but his allies have denied involvement in buying the website name.

A price has not been officially set for the two domain names, however, web hosting companies, including GoDaddy, already offer brokerage services for its purchase.

Both variants were recorded on January 18, when Tory MPs reportedly submitted letters of no confidence in Mr Johnson’s leadership to Sir Graham Brady, chairman of the 1922 committee.

If the domain names are eventually sold, their buyers stand to make huge profits, with ‘.com’ addresses costing just £17 and ‘.co.uk’ available for as little as £5.

Some website addresses have been traded for tens of millions of pounds. In 2019, “voice.com” was sold for around £22m.

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