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WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center


Banco Bradesco S.A. v. Carlos Roberto Batista de Morais

Case No. D2010-1271

1. The Parties

Complainant is Banco Bradesco S.A. of Osasco, São Paulo, Brazil, represented by Marangoni Advogados, Brazil.

Respondent is Carlos Roberto Batista de Morais of Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil.

2. The Domain Name and Registrar

The disputed domain name <bradescointernetbank.com> is registered with eNom.

3. Procedural History

The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on July 29, 2010. On July 30, 2010, the Center transmitted by email to eNom a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain name. On July 30, 2010, eNom transmitted by email to the Center its verification response confirming that Respondent is listed as the registrant and providing the contact details. The Center verified that the Complaint satisfied the formal requirements of the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Policy” or “UDRP”), the Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Rules”), and the WIPO Supplemental Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Supplemental Rules”).

In accordance with the Rules, paragraphs 2(a) and 4(a), the Center formally notified Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceedings commenced on August 3, 2010. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5(a), the due date for Response was August 23, 2010. Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified Respondent’s default on August 25, 2010.

The Center appointed Gabriel F. Leonardos as the sole panelist in this matter on September 10, 2010. The Panel finds that it was properly constituted. The Panel has submitted the Statement of Acceptance and Declaration of Impartiality and Independence, as required by the Center to ensure compliance with the Rules, paragraph 7.

4. Factual Background

Complainant is one of the largest Brazilian banks with activities that date back to 1943. The term “bradesco” is a fanciful one and it was formed as an acronym of the first business name of Complainant, “Banco Brasileiro de Descontos S/A”. Complainant currently has total assets of R$ 265 billion.

BRADESCO is one of the most valuable brands in the banking business and Complainant owns registrations worldwide for trademarks containing the fanciful term “bradesco”, including, among others, Brazilian registration No. 819199370, for trademark BRADESCO INTERNET BANKING, filed on May 13, 1996.

Complainant also owns several domain names, among which are <bradescointernetbanking.com.br> (since September 5, 2003) and<bradesco.com.br> (since January 1, 1996). Complainant’s web page may be accessed under both such domain names.

5. Parties’ Contentions

A. Complainant

Complainant holds that the disputed domain name is identical or confusingly similar to its registered trademark BRADESCO INTERNET BANKING and to its domain name <bradescointernetbanking.com.br>. Complainant claims that Respondent sends to Complainant’s customers so-called “phishing” e-mails with false information in order to lure such customers to access Respondent’s web page hosted under the disputed domain name. Once Complainant’s customers access Respondent’s web page there is a series of questions which such customers are asked to respond and by doing that Respondent succeeds in fraudulently obtain such customers’ confidential data, such as branch and account number, 4-digit and 6-digit passwords, and security card keys. The fact that Respondent’s web site tries to pass-off as Complainant’s actual web site and mimics Complainant’s trade dress is an indication of Respondent’s fraudulent aims. After Complainant’s customers had been led to give to Respondent their confidential data Respondent is in a position to perform any financial operation under such customers’ names.

B. Respondent

Respondent did not reply to Complainant’s contentions.

6. Discussion and Findings

To succeed, Complainant must demonstrate that all of the elements listed in paragraph 4(a) of the Policy have been satisfied:

(i) the domain name is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which Complainant has rights; and

(ii) Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name; and

(iii) the domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.

The burden of proving these elements is on Complainant.

A. Identical or Confusingly Similar

The trademark BRADESCO is a well-known trademark. When a respondent merely adds generic or descriptive terms to an otherwise distinctive and well-known trademark, the domain name is to be considered confusingly similar to the registered trademark. In this case, Respondent added to Complainant’s trademark the generic terms “Internet “ and “bank”.

There are numerous WIPO decisions where it was found that the addition of generic terms does not serve to distinguish the domain name from the trademark, but rather, would reinforce the association of Complainant’s trademark with the domain name (see e.g. Viacom International Inc. v. Frank F. Jackson and Nancy Miller, WIPO Case No. D2003-0755; Caterpillar Inc. v. Roam the Planet, Ltd., WIPO Case No. D2000-0275).

Therefore, the Panel finds that the disputed domain name <bradescointernetbank.com> is confusingly similar to Complainant’s BRADESCO trademark and, thus, the requirement of paragraph 4(a)(i) of the Policy is met.

B. Rights or Legitimate Interests

The disputed domain name was registered on April 27, 2010, that is, several years after Complainant’s registrations for the trademark BRADESCO. Therefore, considering that Complainant’s trademark is well-known in Brazil, the same country of residence of Respondent, the latter must have been aware of Complainant’s trademark at the time of registration.

In addition, Respondent does not run any legitimate business activity in connection with the disputed domain name. On the contrary, on such website Respondent apparently tries to fraudulently obtain confidential information from Complainant’s customers. Thus, the Panel concludes that the disputed domain name is not rightfully used by Respondent in connection with any bona fide offering of goods and services.

Accordingly, Complainant established a prima facie case that Respondent does not have legitimate interests in the disputed domain name. Since Respondent has not replied to the Complaint and, thus, has not presented any other evidence or elements to justify any rights or legitimate interest in connection with the disputed domain name, the Panel has found no indication that any of the circumstances described in Paragraph 4(c)(i)-(iii) of the Policy could apply to the present matter.

Therefore, given the circumstances described above, the Panel finds that Respondent has no right or legitimate interest in respect to the domain name (Policy, Paragraph 4(a)(ii)).

C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith

Based on the evidence respondent registered the disputed domain name in order to engage in “phishing” activities, and Respondent’s use of such disputed domain name has indeed been of such nature.

The illegitimate use of confidential information of Complainant’s customers constitutes bad faith registration and use, as is also the copying of Complainant’s trade dress, as decided among others in Halifax Plc. v. Sontaja Sanduci, WIPO Case No. D2004-0237: “evidence of duplication in the Complainant’s trading get-up, branding and imagery is direct evidence of the domain name in being used in bad faith. In particular, the availability of the online registration pages, and the apparent potential for ‘phishing’ and obtaining information by deception, is not just evidence of bad faith but possibly suggestive of criminal activity. It is accepted that on this basis there is no other possibility than the site being registered in bad faith.”.

Thus, the Panel finds that Respondent has intentionally attempted to attract, for commercial gain, Internet users to Respondent’s website or other on-line location, by creating a likelihood of confusion with Complainant’s mark and that Complainant has proven that Respondent’s registration and use of the disputed domain name was in bad faith, according to paragraph 4(a)(iii) under the Policy.

7. Decision

For all the foregoing reasons, in accordance with paragraphs 4(i) of the Policy and 15 of the Rules, the Panel orders that the domain name <bradescointernetbank.com> be transferred to Complainant.

Gabriel F. Leonardos
Sole Panelist
Dated: September 27, 2010