Question: Is Domain Name Squatting Illegal?

Buying and selling real estate is considered an investment, while domain squatting is illegal.

If a domain squatter can’t prove a legal intent in owning the domain name, it is considered to be a bad faith registration, and he or she is considered guilty of domain squatting.

Is it illegal to buy a competitor’s domain name?

For businesses, the short answer is yes, you can register your competitor’s domain name, provided that all you are doing is mere registration.

Can you get sued for having a similar domain name?

Yes you can get sued. The issue is whether your use of the domain name violates the trademark rights of this competitor. Trademarks identify the source of goods and services.

Can someone take my domain name?

If a domain is registered to someone else, they have paid for it and own it. As long as the person pays to maintain ownership, no one else can have the domain, even if the owner doesn’t appear to be using it, unless that person agrees to transfer or sell the domain, or lets it expire.

How do you handle domain squatters?

Here are five tips to help prevent losing a domain in the future:

  • Register the domain you want before you need it. Act when you find the domain you want.
  • Register similar names.
  • Purchase domain ownership protection.
  • Register a trademark.
  • Be the owner of record.

How do I protect my domain name?

8 Easy Ways to Protect Your Domain Name

  1. Be sure your domain name is registered to the property entity.
  2. Use a reputable registrar.
  3. Lock your domain name.
  4. Use a strong registrar password and protect it diligently.
  5. Go ahead and register (or renew) your domain name for the longest period possible.

The practice is legally restricted to domain names that use words you can find in the dictionary. But some companies will buy up variations or misspellings of other well-known sites—like, say, Micorsoft.com. Those sites aren’t legal, but they can still turn a profit before the trademarked party notices.