WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
IronFX Global Limited v. Peter Smith
Case No. D2015-0233
1. The Parties
Complainant is IronFX Global Limited of Limassol, Cyprus, internally represented.
Respondent is Peter Smith of Douglas, Isle of Man, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
2. The Domain Names and Registrar
The disputed domain names <ieonfx.com>, <ireonfx.com>, <irionfx.com>, <irnonfx.com>, <irofnfx.com>, <irofx.com>, <ironxfx.com>, <irornfx.com>, <irpnfx.com>, <oronfx.com>, <rionfx.com> and <rironfx.com> (the “Disputed Domain Names”) are registered with GoDaddy.com, LLC (the “Registrar”).
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on February 13, 2015. On February 13, 2015, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the Disputed Domain Names. On February 13, 2015, the Registrar 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 February 18, 2015. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5(a), the due date for Response was March 10, 2015. Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified Respondent’s default on March 11, 2015.
The Center appointed Douglas M. Isenberg as the sole panelist in this matter on March 16, 2015. 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 states that it is “an on-line foreign exchange derivatives service provider duly registered and existing under the laws of the Republic of Cyprus and is regulated and authorized by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission”; that it “serves retail and institutional customers from over 180 countries in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Africa and Latin America and has over 50 offices around the globe, and more than 1,600 employees worldwide providing support in more than 46 different languages”; that (as further described below), it owns trademark rights in the mark IRONFX (the “IRONFX Trademark”); that it registered the domain name <ironfx.com> on February 10, 2008; that Respondent is redirecting the Disputed Domain Names to “a Company trading as Markets World […] [that] appears to offer services identical to the Complainant’s services for which the [IRONFX Trademark] was registered”; that “Complainant tried to resolve [this dispute] amicably by sending an email to the Respondent informing him about the infringement in regards only to the disputed domain name <irofx.com>, as by that time, the Complainant was only aware about the registration of the said domain” but that Respondent offered to transfer the domain name for EUR 1,500; and that Respondent previously lost to Complainant a decision under the Policy regarding 22 other domain names, IronFX Global Limited v. Bobs Limited, Peter Smith, WIPO Case No. D2014-1703.
The Disputed Domain Names were created on June 20, 2013, and April 28, 2013.
5. Parties’ Contentions
Complainant contends, in relevant part, as follows:
- The Disputed Domain Names are identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which Complainant has rights because Complainant is the owner of various registrations for the IRONFX Trademark, including International Registration No. 1,129,032 for IRONFX (registered June 28, 2012) for use in connection with “financial affairs”; each of the Disputed Domain Names is confusingly similar to the IRONFX Trademark “phonetically , visually and conceptually”; and “Respondent’s intention was to use the common practice of ‘typosquatting’ which is used for creating domain names confusingly similar to [Complainant’s] well-known [IRONFX Trademark] so as to take advantage of the typing errors made by an Internet user.”
- Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Disputed Domain Names because, inter alia, “Complainant has not authorized, licensed or otherwise consented to the use of the disputed domain names by the Respondent”; “there is no business or other relationship between the Complainant and the Respondent that could give the Respondent any rights to use the [IRONFX Trademark] in the disputed domain names”; and “it is obvious that the Respondent’s sole purpose in registering the disputed domain names was to take advantage of the Complainant’s good will, reputation and recognition.”
- The Disputed Domain Names were registered and are being used in bad faith because Respondent previously lost a proceeding to Complainant under the Policy, as described above; “Respondent’s use of the disputed domain names is to exploit the name and reputation of the Complainant in order to attract clients by misleading and confusing them and in that way diverting them away from the Complainant to a Competitor of the Complainant”; and “it is clear that the Respondent intentionally attempted to attract for commercial gain, Internet users by creating a likelihood of confusion with the [IRONFX Trademark] as to the source or affiliation and this is a strong evidence of registration and use of the disputed domain names in bad faith.”
Respondent did not reply to Complainant’s contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
Pursuant to the Policy, Complainant is required to prove the presence of each of the following three elements to obtain the relief it has requested: (i) the Disputed Domain Names are identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which Complainant has rights; (ii) Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Disputed Domain Names; and (iii) the Disputed Domain Names have been registered and are being used in bad faith. Policy, paragraph 4(a).
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar
Based upon the trademark registrations cited by Complainant, it is apparent that Complainant has rights in and to the IRONFX Trademark. This is consistent with the previous decision under the Policy cited by Complainant, IronFX Global Limited v. Bobs Limited, Peter Smith, supra.
As to whether the Disputed Domain Names are identical or confusingly similar to the IRONFX Trademark, the relevant comparison to be made is with the second-level portion of the domain name only (i.e., “ieonfx”, “ireonfx”, “irionfx”, “irnonfx”, “irofnfx”, “irofx”, “ironxfx”, “irornfx”, “irpnfx”, “oronfx”, “rionfx” and “rironfx”), as it is well-established that the top-level domain (i.e., “.com”) may be disregarded for this purpose. See WIPO Overview of WIPO Panel Views on Selected UDRP Questions, Second Edition (“WIPO Overview 2.0”), paragraph 1.2 (“[t]he applicable top-level suffix in the domain name (e.g., ‘.com’) would usually be disregarded under the confusing similarity test (as it is a technical requirement of registration), except in certain cases where the applicable top-level suffix may itself form part of the relevant trademark”).
This Panel agrees that each of the Disputed Domain Names is a form of “typosquatting” – that is, a typographical variation of the IRONFX Trademark – especially in light of the fact that the Disputed Domain Names are otherwise nonsensical and used in connection with a competing website and further in light of the previous panel’s finding with respect to the domain names in dispute in IronFX Global Limited v. Bobs Limited, Peter Smith, supra.
Accordingly, the Panel finds that Complainant has proven the first element of the Policy.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
Complainant has argued that Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Disputed Domain Names because, inter alia, “Complainant has not authorized, licensed or otherwise consented to the use of the disputed domain names by the Respondent”; “there is no business or other relationship between the Complainant and the Respondent that could give the Respondent any rights to use the [IRONFX Trademark] in the disputed domain names”; and “it is obvious that the Respondent’s sole purpose in registering the disputed domain names was to take advantage of the Complainant’s good will, reputation and recognition.”
Under the Policy, “a complainant is required to make out a prima facie case that the respondent lacks rights or legitimate interests. Once such prima facie case is made, the burden of production shifts to the respondent to come forward with appropriate allegations or evidence demonstrating rights or legitimate interests in the domain name. If the respondent fails to come forward with such appropriate allegations or evidence, a complainant is generally deemed to have satisfied paragraph 4(a)(ii) of the UDRP.” WIPO Overview 2.0, paragraph 2.1.
Accordingly, as a result of Complainant’s allegations and without any evidence from Respondent to the contrary, the Panel is satisfied that Complainant has proven the second element of the Policy.
C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith
Whether a domain name is registered and used in bad faith for purposes of the Policy may be determined by evaluating four (non-exhaustive) factors set forth in the Policy: (i) circumstances indicating that the registrant has registered or the registrant has acquired the domain name primarily for the purpose of selling, renting, or otherwise transferring the domain name registration to the complainant who is the owner of the trademark or service mark or to a competitor of that complainant, for valuable consideration in excess of the registrant’s documented out-of-pocket costs directly related to the domain name; or (ii) the registrant has registered the domain name in order to prevent the owner of the trademark or service mark from reflecting the mark in a corresponding domain name, provided that the registrant has engaged in a pattern of such conduct; or (iii) the registrant has registered the domain name primarily for the purpose of disrupting the business of a competitor; or (iv) by using the domain name, the registrant has intentionally attempted to attract, for commercial gain, Internet users to the registrant’s website or other online location, by creating a likelihood of confusion with the complainant’s mark as to the source, sponsorship, affiliation, or endorsement of the registrant’s website or location or of a product or service on the registrant’s website or location. Policy, paragraph 4(b).
Here, Complainant appears to argue that bad faith exists pursuant to paragraph 4(b)(iv) of the Policy because Respondent is using the Disputed Domain Names to redirect Internet users to a website that “offers services identical to the Complainant’s services for which the [IRONFX Trademark] was registered.” As numerous UDRP panels have held, “the practice of registering a domain name and using it to redirect a user to a website which is used for the sale of competing services constitutes evidence of registering and using a trademark in bad faith.” Arla Foods amba v. Jucco Holdings, WIPO Case No. D2006-0409. See also Medco Health Solutions, Inc. v. Whois Privacy Protection Service, Inc., WIPO Case No. D2004-0453 (finding bad faith where “Respondent’s competing website at the Domain Name provides […] services, which are significantly similar to, and in competition with, the […] services offered by Complainant at its websites”).
Accordingly, the Panel finds that Complainant has proven the third element of the Policy.
For the foregoing reasons, in accordance with paragraphs 4(i) of the Policy and 15 of the Rules, the Panel orders that the disputed domain names <ieonfx.com>, <ireonfx.com>, <irionfx.com>, <irnonfx.com>, <irofnfx.com>, <irofx.com>, <ironxfx.com>, <irornfx.com>, <irpnfx.com>, <oronfx.com>, <rionfx.com> and <rironfx.com> be transferred to Complainant.
Douglas M. Isenberg
Date: March 29, 2015