Cybersquatting – the basics

Whilst the BT v One in a Million case in 1997 put paid to most conventional cybersquatting activity, there are still many cybersquatters out there who have refined their strategies so that their predatory behaviour is better disguised or the amounts of ransom that they ask for are cynically set below the level of costs that court or dispute resolution arbitration proceedings are likely to entail.

If the registrant registered the domain name before you had established your operation or, at least your reputation, then it may be difficult to prove cybersquatting through the dispute resolution arbitration process. Thi is particularly so if the domain name in question is a .com, .net or .org as for such domains, you need to prove not only that the use of the domain is in bad faith but also that it was registered in bad faith. However, with a, this is not so crucial as it is sufficient if the use is in bad faith irrespective of the intentions of the registrant at the time of registration.

Weblaw offers free domain name dispute review services.

For further details on cybersquatting please call Simon Halberstam on 020 3206 2781 or via email to