What you need to know
Despite high levels of computer literacy, we all still often misspell or mistype the names of the brands we are trying to reach and in doing so we run a high risk of ending up on an unofficial website without even realising it. You might also find that the domain name replicates the correct spelling of your brand name but with a different country code or generic top level name from your own domain name.
Whether the third party registers the domain name purely with a view to obtaining a large payment from you or whether it, or a subsequent buyer, starts operating a website from it, early intervention is recommended.
The operation of a website from that domain name, appearing to the outside world to be your own, whether it actually sells goods or services trading off the reputation you’ve built up, or simply posts information about your brand needs to be tackled at the earliest opportunity. Even if the website doesn’t, in its early life, offer an online sales facility, the very fact that it attracts traffic and that its address is being “bookmarked” by consumers leads to the possibility that, once it has built up a following, the website can then be used by its owner, or a new owner, to start seriously damaging your brand in one form or another.
How we can help
We can prepare and speedily file the necessary form of complaint with the relevant domain name registration authority to have the domain name cancelled or transferred to your control and see the matter through to a decision.
Where your proposed new branding makes ownership of pre-existing domain names important for your business, we can monitor those domain names and assist in acquiring them for you.
We can also assist with any claims made against you relating to your own use or registration of domain names.