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Feb. 20, 2024

Protecting Your Brand: Steps Every Brand Owner Should Know

By Christopher D. Casavale

Registering a trademark is an essential first step for brand owners who want to safeguard the reputation and value built up in their trademarks. But it’s not the only action they need to consider. Every brand owner has an affirmative duty to actively monitor and police the marketplace for potential and actual instances of infringement and to act, as warranted, to ensure that the goodwill associated with their trademarks is not infringed or diluted.

One way in which brand owners can ensure they are fulfilling their duty is to monitor for domain name registrations that incorporate their trademarks, which in today’s global digital world is an absolute necessity. Proactively monitoring domain name registrations allows a brand owner to identify, early on, domain names that could potentially be used to perpetrate infringing activities such as phishing campaigns, business email compromise attacks, or websites selling counterfeit goods. It allows the space and time to identify these potential problems before they cause harm not only to the brand owner’s trademarks, but also to consumers.

Once a problematic domain name registration has been identified, there are a number of enforcement actions a brand owner can take. These range from simply monitoring the registrant’s use of the domain name to sending a cease-and-desist letter, or submitting an abuse complaint to a web services provider—such as a website takedown request—or filing a UDRP proceeding to actively recover the domain name from the registrant.

Through such monitoring programs, Nelson Mullins can assist clients in preempting or quickly shutting down infringing activities and preventing irreparable harm to the invaluable goodwill associated with our clients’ brands. Nelson Mullins has the tools and expertise necessary to help protect trademarks in the online space. Please reach out to learn how our team can help protect your brand.