What Should I Do if I Encounter a Cybersquatter?

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As a business owner, you may understand just how important your website is to get prospective customers interested in your products and ultimately drive revenue. So, your domain name may be sacred to you. And when a cybersquatter encroaches upon it, you must act fast before any serious damage is done. Continue reading to learn what you should do if you encounter a cybersquatter and how an experienced New Jersey domain name dispute lawyer at The Ingber Law Firm can help in your legal fight.

By definition, what is a cybersquatter?

First of all, a cybersquatter is an individual who practices an unauthorized registration and use of an Internet domain name that is identical or strikingly similar to your trademark, service mark, company name, or personal name. Typically, a cybersquatter is acting in bad faith with the intent to profit from your goodwill. Further, a cybersquatter may participate in any of the following illegal activities:

  • They may offer to sell your domain name back to you for a hefty price.
  • They may put your domain name up for auction to the general public.
  • They may maintain your domain name and use it to attract prospective customers to their own website and business.

Upon discovering any of the aforementioned illegal activities, you may soon find yourself in a domain name dispute.

What procedures should I follow if I encounter a cybersquatter?

If you encounter a cybersquatter that is negatively impacting your customer base and business revenue, then you may have to turn to legal action. More specifically, litigation governed by the rules and regulations set forth by the United States Anticubersquatting Consumer Protection Act. Here, you may be able to bring forward multiple claims, such as trademark infringement, common law unfair competition, dilution claims, and more.

Another option is that you may file a complaint with a resolution service provider, such as the World Intellectual Property Organization or the National Arbitration Forum, by the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy. Here, you may be able to cancel or transfer the domain name at hand. But this is so long as you prove the following statements as true:

  • You are the owner of a trademark that is identical or strikingly similar to the third party’s domain name.
  • You are under the belief that the third party does not have any rights or interests in a domain name.
  • You are under the belief that the third party is using the domain name in bad faith.

You must remember that there are laws in place to protect you in a situation like this. So please do yourself a favor and retain the services of a skilled Essex County, New Jersey intellectual property lawyer from The Ingber Law Firm today.