Following GoDaddy, the Daily Stormer’s Email Provider Drops It as a Customer
Zoho will no longer allow the neo-Nazi site to use its services.
Image: Shutterstock / Composition: Louise Matsakis
Neo-Nazi website the Daily Stormer has found itself in an increasingly heated battle with technology companies that it relies on to operate after it posted an article mocking Heather Heyer, who was killed at the white-nationalist march in Charlottesville, Virginia on Saturday.
Both its domain provider, GoDaddy, and Zoho, the company which provides its email server, have dropped the hate website as a customer. Google also dropped the site as a customer. Notably, Cloudflare, a security firm which the Daily Stormer uses, continues to lend its services to the hate-speech website.
Sunday night, GoDaddy announced on Twitter that it would give the site "24 hours to move the domain to another provider, as they have violated our terms of service."
"Given The Daily Stormer's latest article comes on the heels of a violent act, we believe this type of article could incite additional violence, which violates our terms of service," a GoDaddy spokesperson told Motherboard in an email. The article mocked Heyer using obscene terms and defended the driver of the vehicle that struck her.
The decision to drop the Daily Stormer as a customer represents a reversal in policy for GoDaddy.
"While we detest the sentiment of this site and the article in question, we support First Amendment rights and, similar to the principles of free speech, that sometimes means allowing such tasteless, ignorant content," the company said a month ago when asked by the Daily Beast why it allowed Daily Stormer to register its domain using the service.
The neo-Nazi website tried Monday to move its domain to Google, which also quickly dropped it as a customer for violating its terms of service.
Now Zoho, which the Daily Stormer used as its email provider, has also dropped the neo-Nazi site as a customer. "There are reasonable grounds to believe that The Daily Stormer has violated Zoho's Terms of Service, so effective immediately The Daily Stormer's access to Zoho's services has been terminated," a Zoho spokesperson told Motherboard in an email.
After GoDaddy announced it was planning to drop the Daily Stormer, the site posted an article indicating it had been "hacked" by notorious hacking collective Anonymous. As The Outline noted, the hack likely never occurred, and was instead a false flag planted by the site's founder Andrew Anglin to distract from the fact that it no longer had a domain provider.
"To all those on the forum, don't worry about you email addresses: that is hosted on a totally separate server that was not breached," Anglin wrote in a post announcing that the "hack" was over.
Motherboard confirmed with Zoho that the Daily Stormer will no longer be able to send or receive any email from the server it was previously using. "We have blocked and removed their access to Zoho Mail," a spokesperson for the company told Motherboard. "Zoho takes any abuse of our services very seriously and we make every attempt to act as quickly as possible when we identify that users are not following our terms of service."
Cloudflare, which provides the Daily Stormer with security services (including protection against DDOS attacks), is still retaining the site as a customer, as of Monday. "Cloudflare is aware of the concerns that have been raised over some sites that have used our network. We find the content on some of these sites repugnant. While our policy is to not comment on any user specifically, we are cooperating with law enforcement in any investigation," a spokesperson for Cloudflare said in a statement to Motherboard. "Cloudflare terminating any user would not remove their content from the internet, it would simply make a site slower and more vulnerable to attack."
Update 8/14/17 6:50 PM: This post has been updated with more information from Zoho and Cloudflare.