Cybersquatting in India 

A cyber squatter is a person who registers a domain name in bad faith and denies the rightful owner. Spammers are some of the common cyber squatters and also there are some instances where a non-profit organization, who has been using an identifier for decades for his organisation, has been displaced by a cyber squatter.

Cybersquatting is a serious issue in today’s world but it seems like not much can be done. Squatters are taking advantage of the lack of legislation pertaining to domain names in the country, but they’re also impacting overall trust in businesses, which can have a great impact on their bottom line. There’s been no shortage of stories detailing how social media campaigns can have an enormous impact. Whether it is for charitable causes or for garnering interest in new products, social media has proven its importance as a tool for getting the word out about products and services.

The misuse of domain names through squatter sites represents a potential threat to the effectiveness of these marketing efforts, though.In order to stop cyber-squatting, it is necessary to have clarity on the definition of cybersquatting and rightful protection. Cybersquatting is an act of trademark infringement online. If a domain name is similar to another trademark, then it amounts to cybersquatting. The legal system should not allow any compensation to squatters who intentionally buy domains just to sell them later on. In this regards , legislative framework must be formulated in such a way so that no one can take someone’s registered domain name by registering it under the pretext of legitimate registrars, business organizations and individuals.

One of the things in which Government, civil society and businesses associations (along with Registrar body) should work together to frame the law whereby if appropriate penalty is imposed for selling squatters for selling domains or allowing cyber squatting. Cybersquatting and domain name cybersquatting is a big problem, which can be solved by the IT Act and not under the auspices of WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization) or the World bank.

The IT Act should be amended to provide for provisions about cyber squatting and related issues. Domain names should remain within the control of Government or similar organizations instead of individual agencies and private companies where these domain names would have no worth. It should also be noted that as far as possible, domain names should not be allowed to lapse which will effectively end up with similar results as are obtaining currently.Intellectual property law provides some essential means to prevent domain name cyber-squatting.

The legal system have to be very advanced and have to be updated to address the changing world.While the legal system of India is silent on this issue, in the US the ‘Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act’, 1999ss, has made it an offence to register a domain name identical with or similar to a trademark belonging to another person with the purpose of either selling that domain to the trademark owner or using it by itself for commercial gains. In fact in December 2015, a Jaipur based company has registered nine trademarks namely – paytm (identical to Paytm’s trademark), paytmwallet, Paytm Digital Wallet etc. exclusively in India and taking advantage of their registration they have blocked the website paytm.com which main portal is outside India.

Aishwarya Says:

I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.

IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN PARTICIPATING IN THE SAME, DO LET ME KNOW.

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The copyright of this Article belongs exclusively to Ms. Aishwarya Sandeep. Reproduction of the same, without permission will amount to Copyright Infringement. Appropriate Legal Action under the Indian Laws will be taken.

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In the year 2021, we wrote about 1000 Inspirational Women In India, in the year 2022, we would be featuring 5000 Start Up Stories.


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