Protect your brand online

1 min read

1. Trademark your brand. Preferably, your domain name should be the same as your trademark. The more unique and distinctive your brand name is, the higher the likelihood of successful trademark registration and prevailing in disputes with infringers.

2. Claim copyright. Include a copyright notice on your site pages.

3. Use a domain-name registrar that offers “domain locking” to block unauthorized transfer requests. This prevents hijackers from tricking your registrar into passing control to them. Consider paying for registry locking.

4. Make sure your WHOIS information is up-to-date and does not point to anybody but you.

5. Monitor for infringement. Check variations of your brand and trademark to see if a competitor is infringing.

6. When you notice anyone using your brand or trademark, you can send them a cease and desist letter. Normally, a cease and desist letter is enough to get a competitor to stop using your trademark, especially if the letter comes on an attorney letterhead.

Sample Cease & Desist Trademark Infringement Letter

[DATE]
[NAME AND ADDRESS OF INFRINGER]

Re: [TRADEMARK MANE] Infringement
Dear [INFRINGER’S NAME]:

We own exclusive rights to trademark [TRADEMARK] pursuant to U.S. Federal Trademark Registration No. xxxxxx.  We use this trademark in connection with the sale of [DESCRIPTION OF THE GOODS/SERVICES].  Federal trademark law gives use the right to restrict the use of the trademark, or a confusingly similar trademark, in connection with the sale of confusingly similar goods or services.

It has come to our attention that you use the name [INFRINGING NAME]  which is confusingly similar to our trademark.  Your use of [INFRINGING NAME]  misdirects customers seeking our goods [services]. Your activities are, thus, unlawful and constitute trademark infringement, trademark dilution, unfair competition and false designation of origin.

Your liability under federal trademark law may include money damages, disgorgement of your profits, injunctive relief and reimbursement of our attorney fees. We realize that you might not have been aware that your actions violate trademark law. At this point we prefer to resolve this matter amicably and respectfully request you cease and desist in using the name [INFRINGING NAME] in connection with your goods or services. If you fail to do so within 10 days, we are prepared to file a lawsuit to protect our legal rights.

Sincerely,

[SIGNATURE]

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