Protection of a company’s intellectual properties including patents, designs, trade names, and domain names is a vital responsibility of every business owner. if you want to establish a successful business, you need to make sure that you are not the target of any cybersquatter.
Cybersquatting is the process of making a profit utilizing the goodwill of the trademark that belongs to someone else. The cybersquatters register in, traffic in, or use certain domain names to profit from the goodwill of the reputed companies.
⮚ What is cybersquatting?
A few details about the concept will help you to understand it better. The cybersquatters aim to create confusion among consumers who use Google and other search engines to register or buy domain names. They will create domains with similar names as the reputed ones that have registered trademarks.
And then these people will sell the domain names to the trademark owners at a much higher price. Trademark owners always give in to the amount as they want to take advantage of the domain name.
The Cybersquatting process involves placing derogatory information on the websites that the cybersquatters held. It will create pressure on the trademark owners to purchase the domain from unscrupulous professionals.
⮚ How to identify domain squatting
With cybersquatters multiplying at a high rate, you tend to think that someone is trying to profit from your domain name the moment the deired domain name is taken. Some cases can be genuine. For instance, there can be many other businesses with the same name as that of your company.
So it's high time to know how to identify Cybersquatting and take necessary precautions at the right time.
#1. Check the website
The simple way to detect whether some cybersquatter is using your domain name is to check out the website.
When the domain redirects you to the standard and normal websites, like an active shop or service provider, then there must be a legitimate user behind it.
If the domain redirects you to a page that says “this domain is for sale” or “under construction”. It's highly possible that you have got a case of Cybersquatting.
Again, you may come across a page that already has a number of ads. Such websites are common for all the branded domains or existing business houses.
But when the domain with the same brand name redirects you to a page that does not have anything other than Google ads for similar items, then someone is surely aiming to make money from using your trademark. You should take immediate legal action in court to stop the illegal activity.
#2. Contact the owner of the domain
Sometimes, a user may have bought a domain name for a project or a new business that they have not launched yet. And it will lead you to the “page under construction”. It can simply indicate that the business owner has not published the site yet.
When unsure, the best solution is to contact the domain owner. Internet is a powerful platform that will help you to procure the name and address of the business owner. if the information is not available, it may imply that the domain owner prefers to hide personal details by applying the privacy features of the registrars.
In cases of Cybersquatting, you will always find the contact details of the cybersquatter available on the site. After all, the contact details are essential for interested clients to contact them.
⮚ How to protect your business?
In a world gradually filling with cybersquatters, do you have the means to protect your business? Yes, you do. Nothing can stop a person from purchasing a domain that has no registration yet. This implies that anyone can register the domain that also contains your company’s or personal name.
How are you going to protect the business from Cybersquatting? Just take a look at the important steps that you can take for preventing the invasion of cybersquatters.
#1. Register from the beginning
Do you know what’s the simplest solution to prevent others from taking the domain name that you use? Just register the domain name right from the beginning. It implies that you will purchase the domain name even before you launch the business.
When yiu set up the company, why not register the domain name right at that moment? All of you know that there is no existence of a company if you aren’t online. So, purchase the domain name even if you don’t have the plan to invest in website development immediately. It will ensure that you will get the desired domain name.
And you can safely put away the tension of Cybersquatting.
#2. Purchase similar domain names
Why don’t you buy the same domain name with different extensions like .com or .net? you also have the liberty to register the domain with different country codes like .co.uk or .ca.
Moreover, to prevent Cybersquatting, you can consider registration of variations in the domain name. it can include common misspellings too! This will keep the cybersquatters away from copying the trademark which can lead the potential customers astray.
#3. Buy protection for domain ownership
It’s a service that you can get from domain name registrars.
It will keep the domain information private
You won't lose the domain even if it expires accidentally.
This is an effective preventive measure for Cybersquatting as it will protect the domain ownership. One of the common ways to protect the company from cybersquatters is to purchase domain ownership protection.
⮚ Avoid domain squatting
Domain squatting is quite different from selling and buying domains, which is called domain flipping. As Cybersquatting involves the intentional registration of existing trademarks to make more profit illegally, it involves malicious intentions.
However, in domain flipping, there is no bad intent involved. Users engaging in this practice will purchase the domains that reflect popular products, niches, or interests.
So, while selling and buying domains, ensure that you are not being a cybersquatter unintentionally. On purchasing the trademarked name, you will risk potential litigation. Therefore, you should be cautious to keep yourself and the company safe from cybersquatters.