Choosing and Protecting Domain Names

by: Umang Malhotra

It is important that the consumer chooses a domain name for their website more carefully in order to avoid a complaint being lodged to one of the organizations that resolve domain name disputes. Nearly eighty percent of Complainants win the cases when a complaint is lodged to one of the neutral service providers under Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). This article gives some insight into choosing a more secure domain name and then how to defend your domain name when a complaint is filed with one of the neutral service providers like World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).

Background: I am an operator of website www.natwestfraud.com, which was registered by my nephew in August 1999. The site has been online since then with few interruptions. I sued Natwest Bank (now a subsidiary of Royal Bank of Scotland (RBOS)) in English court for fraud and other charges (see details on the website). I lost the case in English courts. There was no jury in this case and the court did not allow any witnesses. I conducted the case myself in the court while RBOS employed a so-called reputable law firm to defend themselves. Justice Pumfrey was the presiding judge who had an account/relationship with NatWest Bank. He did not recluse himself. It was an unequal contest. I decided to put the case on the Internet in order to expose judges and top executives of these so called reputable companies and what really goes on behind the scenes - there is arrogance of power, unethical and intimidation practices, and the hypocrisy of top executives and how they hide behind charade of respectability.

Subsequently RBOS lawyers filed a case against natwestfraud.com in Los Angles Court that was dismissed without prejudice. Later RBOS filed a Complaint with WIPO about natwestfraud.com that they lost 3-0 with WIPO Panelists.

I have to defend the use of domain name natwestfraud.com against one of the 10th largest Bank's in the world. The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBOS) lodged the complaint to WIPO through their law firm O'Melveny & Myers (OMM) of Los Angles, California. Previously the law firm of Dibb Lupton Alsop (DLA) of London was acting on behalf of RBOS. We won the case 3-0 against RBOS with WIPO Panelists. The behavior and tactics of executives of the firms involved in this case is unbelievable. I could not understand how these lawyers and top executives of the bank can be so confused in not recognizing the distinction between natwestfraud and NatWest names.

We studied many cases of decisions, which were sent to WIPO Panelists about domain name disputes by the Complainants. In the process, I also dealt with Network Solutions (now Verisign Inc.), which was registrar of our domain name. We also studied several papers about domain name disputes, which were written by prominent lawyers. All the institutions and people were new in this field as these disputes only came for resolution before ICANN since October 1999.

Entire article will appear in 'how to booklet' ...

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