“The Indian Prime Minister’s visit did work wonders…it ended up convincing Google to sell the most visited domain on the internet to a person from the Kutch region of the Indian Prime Minister’s home state…albeit just for a minute or so.” said a guy named Sanmay Ved who purchased Google.com domain for $12( around 790 INR).
Although his order got cancelled and the amount was refunded within a minute, but for that one minute he did get access to Google Webmaster tools and even started getting notifications in Google Search Console from websites powered by Google.com.
The whole thing started when Ved, an ex-Googler was browsing the domains page of Google domains and surprisingly saw the “Available” mark in front of perhaps the world’s most commonly used domain. He thought it to be an error but when he proceeded with the transaction, it completed successfully giving him the access to the domain. However he got two mails from “firstname.lastname@example.org” and “email@example.com” which was unusual as it is not the norm when someone buys a domain via Google.
And rightly so, after a minute or so, his order was cancelled and money was refunded back into his account which was an easier thing to do for Google as it owns the domain registration service. A similar thing happened once with Microsoft but in that case, Microsoft had to actually ask the buyer to return the domain as Microsoft had forgotten to renew its address hotmail.co.uk and someone grabbed the opportunity.!
Ved has detailed his entire experience with screenshots in his post on LinkedIn and reported the incident to Google Security team. Google reverted back to Ved and has acknowledged the incident and is working on it.