Dell takes on cybersquatters

Dell logoDell has filed lawsuits in Florida against cybersquatters – individuals and companies – for typosquatting over 1,100 domain names.

Information Week reports the lawsuit was “filed under seal and without notice to the defendants in October — to avoid the removal or destruction of evidence — Dell charges Juan Pablo Vazquez of Miami, Florida, several unknown individuals, and a handful of domain name companies in Florida with violating its trademarks on more than 1,100 domain names.

“The lawsuit, unsealed two weeks ago, accuses the defendants of cybersquatting, trademark infringement and dilution, counterfeiting, deceptive trade practices, and unfair competition.”

As well as registering domain names that took advantage of the Dell name and trademark, the typosquatters also used websites using “the infringing domains to host ‘pay-per-click’ that display or displayed advertising links to various commercial Web sites and to offer goods or services identical or similar to Dell’s sites.

“The lawsuit also claims the defendants set their sites up to serve pop-up and pop-under ads, and thereby earned ad revenue off Dell’s trademarked names. “

“The complaint names three registrars as defendants — BelgiumDomains, CapitolDomains, and DomainDoorman — as well as what Dell claims are nearly a dozen Caribbean shell companies that allegedly served as the entities registering the domains. The suit also names Juan Pablo “JP” Vazquez, a Miami resident who is alleged to be connected to those companies” according to another story in The Washington Post.

The Washington Post goes on to say:
“According to one example cited in Dell’s lawsuit, on May 25, 2007, DomainDoorman registered ‘dellfinacncialservices.com.’ On May 30, the registrar deleted the domain from its stable of Web site names. Minutes later, that same Web site name was snatched up by BelgiumDomains, which then dropped the name on June 4. That same day, dellfinacncialservices.com was grabbed by CapitolDomains, which in turn relinquished it on June 9, the same day that site was re-registered again by DomainDoorman.

“The complaint further charges that the registrars created and controlled a series of shell corporations in the Bahamas to act as the entities registering the domains, including Caribbean Online International, Domain Drop S.A., Domibot, Highlands International Investment, Keyword Marketing Inc., Maison Tropicale, Marketing Total S.A, Click Cons Ltd., Wan-Fu China Ltd. and Web Advertising Corp.

“David Steele, an attorney representing Dell in the case, said the defendants tasted on average between 30 million and 60 million domains each month. In any given month, Steele said, the registrars collectively purchased between 50,000 and 200,000 of the domains they tasted.”

Further information on these stories is available from:

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