WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Dropbox, Inc. v. Mohd Shariq, Techinspire
Case No. D2016-1194
1. The Parties
The Complainant is Dropbox, Inc. of San Francisco, California, United States of America, internally represented.
The Respondent is Mohd Shariq, Techinspire of Saharanpur, India.
2. The Domain Names and Registrars
The disputed domain names <dropbox-support.com> and <dropboxsupport.com> are registered with Tucows Inc. The disputed domain name <dropbox-support-number.com> is registered with GoDaddy.com, LLC (these three disputed domain names shall be collectively referred to as the “Domain Names”).
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on June 10, 2016. On June 14, 2016, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrars requests for registrar verification in connection with the Domain Names. On June 14, 2016 and June 15, 2016, the Registrars transmitted by email to the Center their verification responses confirming that the 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 and 4, the Center formally notified the Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceedings commenced on June 22, 2016. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was July 12, 2016. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent’s default on July 14, 2016.
The Center appointed Dawn Osborne as the sole panelist in this matter on July 25, 2016. 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
The Complainant is a provider of computer software and related services and is the owner of the DROPBOX trademark in various jurisdictions around the world. The Complainant holds trademark registrations for the trademark DROPBOX since at least January 8, 2010, in the case of Japanese trademark registration No. 5292472.
The Domain Names were registered between January 29, 2016 and April 8, 2016. The web sites to which the Domain Names point mimic the official support services of the Complainant using its name and logo in the top flagship area and elsewhere on these web sites.
5. Parties’ Contentions
The Complainant’s submissions can be summarised as follows:
The Complainant has trademark registrations for DROPBOX and pending applications in over 70 jurisdictions around the world covering computer software, communications networks and storage of electronic media and has been using the trademark DROPBOX since 2007.
The Domain Names are confusingly similar to the DROPBOX mark. The Domain Names contain the DROPBOX mark in its entirety. Descriptive or generic additions do not avoid a finding of confusing similarity and terms that describe the Complainant’s product are more likely to increase confusion. The addition of the generic terms “support” and “support number” to the DROPBOX trademark do not avoid confusion and increase confusion as the Complainant offers support channels including its own website at “www.dropbox.com/support” and social media accounts, for example under the handle “dropboxsupport” on Twitter.
The Respondent is using the Domain Names to advertise and offer purported “Dropbox Support” and “Dropbox Support Center” services. The Respondent cannot be commonly known by any of the Domain Names as it has registered them within the last few months and incorporated the DROPBOX mark in order to mislead regarding the source or affiliation of the support services purportedly offered. The Respondent has not acquired any trademark or service mark rights in the Domain Names.
The Respondent does not make a legitimate noncommercial or fair use of the Domain Names without intent for commercial gain, but instead misleads and diverts consumers by using “dropbox” in the Domain Names and the Dropbox name and logo prominently on its web pages with the commercial intent to appear to be the Complainant’s official “Dropbox support”. The Domain Name <dropbox-support.com> especially mimics the look and feel of the Complainant’s “Dropbox Help Centre”, available at “www.dropbox.com/help”. The websites at the Domain Names <dropbox-support.com> and <dropbox-support-number.com> use the registered trademark symbol for DROPBOX. By such use the Respondent intentionally attempts to mislead and divert consumers and attract Internet users to its websites and services by creating a likelihood of confusion with the DROPBOX mark as to the source, sponsorship, affiliation or endorsement of the Respondent’s websites. The Respondent is not affiliated with or authorised by the Complainant and is not authorized to use the Dropbox logo or Dropbox artwork or to represent itself as “Dropbox Support” or the “Dropbox Support Centre.” These sites place Dropbox users and their accounts at risk since users may be misled to believe they are interacting with the Complainant’s support services and unknowingly provide sensitive information to a third party unaffiliated with the Complainant.
The Respondent is engaging in a pattern of registering domain names that include the DROPBOX trademark which also prevents the Complainant from reflecting its mark in the Domain Names.
The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
Paragraph 4(a) of the Policy requires that the Complainant must prove each of the following three elements to obtain an order that a domain name should be cancelled or transferred:
(i) the Domain Names registered by the Respondent are identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which the Complainant has rights; and
(ii) the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Domain Names; and
(iii) the Domain Names have been registered and are being used in bad faith.
A. Identical and/or Confusingly Similar
The Complainant is a provider of computer software and related services and is the owner of the DROPBOX trademark in various jurisdictions around the world. The Complainant only provided a table of trademark registrations without supporting print outs from registries or certificates. The Panel has knowledge of the Complainant and its services and has been able to verify European Union Trademark registrations in its name from publicly available databases1 . The existence of the Complainant’s rights is also not disputed by the Respondent. Accordingly the Panel is prepared to hold that the Complainant has registered trademark rights in DROPBOX.
The Domain Name <dropboxsupport.com> consists of the Complainant's registered mark DROPBOX plus the generic word “support”. The Domain Name <dropbox-support.com> consists of the Complainant’s registered mark DROPBOX plus a hyphen and the generic word “support”. The Domain Name <dropbox-support-number.com> consists of the Complainant’s registered mark DROPBOX plus the generic words “support” and “number” separated by hyphens. The addition of these generic words and hyphens do not serve to distinguish the Domain Names from the Complainant’s DROPBOX marks and the Panel finds that the Domain Names are confusingly similar to a mark in which the Complainant has rights for the purpose of the Policy.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
It it is clear from the evidence on record that the Respondent has used the sites attached to the Domain Names to promote services in competition with those of the Complainant. It is clear from the content of the sites attached to the Domain Names that the Respondent was aware of the significance of the Complainant’s trademark at the time of registration of the Domain Names. The usage is not fair use under the Policy as the sites at the Domain Names mimic the official website of the Complainant, use the DROPBOX mark and the Complainant’s logo at the top of web pages and do not make it clear that there is no commercial connection or otherwise with the Complainant. The Panel finds this use likely to be confusing for Internet users. As such it cannot amount to a bona fide offering of goods and services for the purposes of the Policy. The Respondent has not given any reason why it should be able to use the Complainant’s name and logo in the Domain Names and on its websites and does not appear to have any other legitimate reason for doing so. As such the Panel finds that the Respondent does not have rights or legitimate interests in the Domain Names and that the Complainant has satisfied the second limb of the Policy.
C. Registration and Use in Bad Faith
The Complainant alleges that the Respondent’s use of the websites at the Domain Names is commercial and it is using them to make profit from products and services which compete with the Complainant in a confusing manner. The content of the Respondent’s websites makes it clear that it was aware of the Complainant’s rights at the time of registration of the Domain Names. It seems clear that the mimicking of the Complainant’s official site and the use of the mark DROPBOX and the Complainant’s logo would cause people to associate the website at the Domain Names with the Complainant and its business. Accordingly, the Panel holds that the Respondent has intentionally attempted to attract for commercial gain Internet users to its website by creating a likelihood of confusion with the Complainant’s trademarks as to the source, sponsorship, affiliation or endorsement of the Respondent’s websites.
As such, the Panel finds that the Complainant has made out its case that the Domain Names were registered and used in bad faith and has satisfied the third limb 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 Domain Names, <dropbox-support.com>, <dropboxsupport.com> and <dropbox-support-number.com>, be transferred to the Complainant.
Date: August 1, 2016
1 As stated in paragraph 4.5 of the WIPO Overview of WIPO Panel Views on Selected UDRP Questions, Second Edition (“WIPO Overview 2.0”), a panel may undertake limited factual research into matters of public record if it deems this necessary to reach the right decision. A panel may also rely on personal knowledge.