Microsoft Counters Cybersquatters
Two cases were registered by Microsoft versus individuals who exploited the company's brand name by fraudulently selling it for a profit. These people, also known as cybersquatters, exploit Microsoft brand name to steer traffic to their domain to boost profits by publicizing on the Internet. Numerous variants of these sites are available like freewindowslive.com and msnblog.com. These sites are under litigation.
As per Microsoft, previously cybersquatters sold domain names to several organizations by duplicating their names and logos, but currently they are turning profit by exhibiting ads to consumers visiting these sites.
"The company has been witnessing a mad rush for website names to impel more traffic for raking in more profits," affirms Aaron Kornblum Microsoft's lawyer for the enforcement of Internet safety norms and practices. "Putting a prestigious or popular logo within your domain name is an appealing but unlawful mode to make profit."
According to Microsoft, usually above 2000 domains are filed daily, carrying Microsoft merchandise and logos. Also, nearly 75% are possessed by proficient domain name bearing organizations.
"All of these are moderate calculations," added Kornblum. "We're guessing that majority of these listed web sites bearing software companies logos are actually such wheeler dealers."
ACPA can enforce penalties as large as $100,000 on anybody utilizing the current logos, and company's brands for profit.
Two court cases have been registered in the name of four accused alongside Jason Cox, of N.M., Daniel Goggins and John Jonas of Utah, for carrying on trade as "Jonas and Goggins Studios LLC" and "Newtonarch LLC". The company has also stated that they have charged 324 domains for zeroing in on their trademarks. The other lawsuit is lodged against Calif resident, Dan Brown, who, by his firm Partner VI holdings, had filed 85 Microsoft directed sub-domains.
"Microsoft wishes to assist Internet users' access their proposed websites," Kornblum said. "You break the law when you abuse somebody's patented product in your own websites."
A panel of researchers traced these cybersquatting sites by a downloadable software device created by them named the Stridel URL Tracer that allows Internet domain holders to locate infiltrators.
Related article: Microsoft Patches Live OneCare to Tackle Quarantined E-Mails
» SPAMfighter News - 28-08-2006