When you are ready to put your company online by setting up a website, there can hardly be anything more frustrating than finding out the name or trademark of your business has been infringed upon by another party. At Cox Padmore Skolnik & Shakarchy LLP, we understand the concerns of New York City company owners who are the victims of cybersquatting and other Internet trademark infringements.
What exactly is cybersquatting? According to The Coalition Against Domain Name Abuse, the act of cybersquatting involves another person using your company’s trademark for his or her personal gain. When the Internet was relatively new, cybersquatters would often register the URL of a person’s or company’s name. In order to use the URL for a website, the company in question would have to buy the rights from the cybersquatter.
Today, cybersquatting has become more sophisticated and complex. If, for example, you have a website at www.t-shirtsbyjoe.com, a cybersquatter might set up a similar-sounding page at www.tshirtsfromjoe.com. He or she may then sell counterfeit products claiming they are your own brand or use deceptive advertising to generate revenue. Cybersquatters may also use a fake website to compromise people’s computers with malware, direct them to other false sites and steal identities.
What can you do if your brand is the target of cybersquatting? In some cases, it is easier to negotiate with the cybersquatter. In other cases, you may be able to pursue legal action against the other party under the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act. Learn more about this area of intellectual property law by visiting our page.