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Old 02-11-2005, 12:20:35 AM     #1 (permalink)

 
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Lawyers warn of domain name scam

Intellectual property law firm Adams & Adams have issued a warning alerting SA companies of a scam emanating from 'domain name service providers' in the UK.

Intellectual property law firm Adams & Adams have issued a warning alerting South African companies of a scam emanating from "domain name service providers" in the UK, regarding the registration of domain names in various domain name spaces, such as .co.za, .com and .co.uk.

"Owners of intellectual property rights and, in particular, trademarks, are warned to be on the lookout for these unscrupulous operators, 'selling' domain names," says Steven Yeates, partner at Adams & Adams.

So-called service providers visit the Web sites of well-known South African companies to determine the primary trademarks of the company, Yeates says in a statement, adding that they then conduct searches to ascertain whether domain names, which incorporate the well-known trademarks, are available for registration.

For example, the domain names "adamsandadamsintellectualpropertylawyers.com" or "adamsandadamsspecialisedlegalservices.net" would typically be identified by the fraudsters, since they consist of the "Adams & Adams" trademark, together with descriptive material such as "intellectualpropertylawyers" or "specialisedlegalservices", Yeates notes.

"Once the service providers have determined which domain names are available for registration, they send a pro-forma invoice to the South African company concerned requesting payment for the registration of the domain names, usually for a period of 10 years."
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