Delhi HC Expresses Concern Amid Absence Of Procedure To Identify Parties
The Delhi High Court showed concern on the a la lbsence of system for identification of parties who, through deception and fraud, used websites and domain names comprising of famous brands and trademarks, meaning thereby obtaining money illegally.
The Delhi High Court showed concern on the absence of system for identification of parties who, through deception and fraud, used websites and domain names comprising of famous brands and trademarks, meaning thereby obtaining money illegally.
Justice Pratibha M Singh dealth with a bunch of pleas filed at the instance of trademark and brand owners which sought reliefs against misuse of their marks and names by unauthorized persons, who registered such marks as an essential part of their domain names.
The Court observed that in few of these cases, there was a basic misuse of the domain name and the intendment of the registrant was to derive monetary benefit.
"The same could be 'cyber-squatting' cases. Some others intend to gain monetarily from the trademark owner's goodwill by selling their products using such domain names, bearing the Plaintiff's mark. In other cases, the infringers have gone a step further and distributorships, franchises, dealerships, etc. have been offered fraudulently and large sums of money have been collected from unsuspecting customers. Initially, in each of these suits, the domain names are identified. However, the process of registration of infringing domain names has become successive and continuous," the Court said.
The pleas thus raised the issue that the creation of such domain names had resulted in massive damage to innocent and impressionable members of the public, who have been made to believe that the websites hosted on some 'impostor' domain names, belong to the actual brand owners.
Another issue was in relation to masking of identities by persons registering the domain names and that even if such information is unmasked, the information being collected by the domain name registrars (DNRs) at the stage of registration of the domain name was unsatisfactory.
The Court directed that the report and the outcome of the meeting, along with the affidavits by the DNRs, shall be placed on record, on or before 31st August, 2022.
The matter will now come up for hearing on September 13.