Victory for Latimer Levay Fyock's Client Zacks Investment Research, Inc.
On April 13, 2022, a World Intellectual Property Organization (“WIPO”) Panel issued a Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (“UDRP”) decision in favor of Zacks Investment Research, Inc. (“Zacks”), for the domain name <zackstrade.pro>.
Founded 1978 Zacks has been offering independent research and investment related content to customers in the financial industry. Zacks provides professional investors with financial data and analysis which allows its customers to make better investment decisions for their proprietary accounts and the investment accounts of clients. Zacks research services are used by thousands of analysts at hundreds of brokerages throughout the world in order to provide their clients with reliable investment information.
Earlier this year, Zacks discovered a website called <zackstrade.pro> that mirrored Zacks’ <zackstrade.com> website except it used an email address and a phone number which were not associated with Zacks. Fearing that the <zackstrade.pro> website was an attempt to engage in phishing attacks Zacks filed a UDRP Complaint to insure Zacks customers and the general public were not being directed to a fraudulent website.
In ruling on behalf of Zacks, the WIPO Panelist wrote:
the disputed domain name resolves to a website which is virtually identical to Complaint’s website. Thus, Panel finds that the disputed domain name could cause Internet users to mistakenly believe that the services offered are provided by Complainant, or by an entity affiliated to Complainant, and induces users to present personal financial information to Respondent. See: Barclays Bank PLC v. PrivacyProtect.org / Sylvia Paras, WIPO Case No. D2011-2011: “The Panel finds that use of the disputed domain name will divert potential customers from the Complainant’s business to the website under the disputed domain name by attracting Internet users who mistakenly believe that the disputed domain name is affiliated to the Complainant, and which may further mistakenly believe that the services offered on this website are offered by the Complainant, or by an entity affiliated to the Complainant.”
Also, the Panel finds that the practice of making use of a disputed domain name with the specific purpose of resolving to a copycat website (or to a highly similar website) asking for details of the Internet users (as for example login credentials) may be used for purposes of phishing, since it deceives consumers, leading them to believe that there is some kind of association between Complainant and Respondent to potentially obtain information of the Internet users. Or, even so, suggests that Respondent’s webpage belongs to Complainant’s. In this matter, see: Lewis Silkin LLP v. Heinz Siepenkötter / Siepenkötter kg, WIPO Case No. D2014-1196:
The use of a domain name for the purpose of defrauding Internet users by operating a “phishing” website is the clearest evidence of a bad faith registration and use of a domain name. (Emphasis added)
The full decision in Zacks Investment Research, Inc. v. Eruwa Ninioritse Case No. D2022-0122 can be found here.
Zacks Investment Research was represented in the proceeding by Latimer LeVay Fyock attorneys John L. Ambrogi and Colin T.J. O’Brien.
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