Cybersquatting Leads to Lawsuit and Emphasizes Need to Trademark
The Houston Chronicle reported that Munday Chevrolet filed suit in a South Florida federal court, after people reported visiting the car dealership’s website and finding porn.
When someone creates a website address that is similar to a company or organization in order to hijack traffic from a legitimate site or harm a company’s reputation, that is know as cybersquatting. Here, www.mundaychevrolet.com was purchased by Manuel Suarez from Florida-based moniker.com.
This scenario illustrates the importance of taking defensive measures to protect against such practices. It is advisable to trademark a business name with the United States Patent & Trademark Office and register as many domain names under similar variations as is feasible.
Many domain name disputes are handled by the World Intellectual Property Organization in Geneva, which offers e-mail arbitration for trademark names that have been federally registered. If the entity does not have a registered trademark, it oftens has little recourse in cybersquatting cases but to go to court.
In this case, there were no records of Munday Chevrolet having a registered trademark.