Brand assets face many more threats from online and internet attacks than from offline and physical infringements.
Due to the rapid increase in internet penetration and the availability of cheap domains, the number and cases of fake domains are on the rise with more and more cases being reported in India.
There are multiple options in place for Brand owners to reclaim their branded domains from cybersquatters.
1. UDRP (Uniform Domain-Name-Resolution Policy)
Uniform Domain-Name Dispute-Resolution Policy is a process established by ICANN for the resolution of disputes regarding the registration of internet domain names. Most numbers of UDRPs are filed with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).
To be successful in a UDRP complaint, the complainant has to prove three tenets:
the disputed domain name is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which the Complainant has rights;
the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the disputed domain name, and
the disputed domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.
UDRP is applicable to all gTLDs and some ccTLDs. If a complainant is successful the domain is transferred to the complainant.
2. URS (Uniform Rapid Suspension)
Uniform Rapid Suspension is a lighter version of UDRP and provides quick relief to brand owners where the case of infringement is clear-cut. There is a higher proof of burden on the complaint which involves the same three tenets as UDRP.
URS is only applicable to new gTLDs and if the complaint is successful the domain is suspended for the duration of the registration which can be extended by the complainant for one more year on paying the relevant charges.
For a complete list of new gTLDs, please refer to our blog.
We have helped a multitude of companies and brand owners protect their brand in the online space and recover their branded domains. Please reach out to us for understanding the options for resolving your cybersquatting case.