WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Royal Bank of Canada v. China Capital Investment Limited
Case No. D2017-1025
1. The Parties
The Complainant is Royal Bank of Canada of Montreal, Quebec, Canada, represented by CSC Digital Brand Services AB, Sweden.
The Respondent is China Capital Investment Limited of Hong Kong, China.
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The disputed domain name <rbcbankapps.com> (the "Domain Name") is registered with Dropcatch Marketplace LLC (the "Registrar").
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the "Center") on May 24, 2017. On May 30, 2017, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the Domain Name. On May 30, 2017, the Registrar transmitted by email to the Center its verification response 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 9, 2017. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was June 29, 2017. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent's default on June 30, 2017.
The Center appointed Ian Lowe as the sole panelist in this matter on July 6, 2017. 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 was incorporated in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada in 1869 and is one of Canada's largest banks. It is one of North America's leading diversified financial services companies, and provides personal and commercial banking, wealth management, insurance, investor services and capital markets products and services on a global basis. The Complainant has over 80,000 full and part-time employees who serve more than 16 million personal, business, public sector and institutional clients through offices in Canada, the United States of America ("United States"), and 35 other countries.
The Complainant is the owner of numerous trademark registrations across various jurisdictions, including United States trademark number 2463205 RBC, registered on June 26, 2001, United States trademark number 3616966 RBC BANK, registered on May 5, 2009, and European Union trademark number 2026375 RBC registered on January 21, 2004. The Complainant established RBC as its master brand in 2001.
The Domain Name was registered on April 7, 2017. The Domain Name resolves to a website featuring pay‑per-click links that refer to the Complainant but in fact lead to unrelated third party websites. The Domain Name had earlier resolved to a website that attempted to infect Internet users' computers with viruses or malware. Accessing the website at the Domain Name would freeze the user's web browser and display a page that read, in part, "Zeus virus detected - your computer has been blocked… Please call computer system technician immediately on…".
5. Parties' Contentions
The Complainant contends that the Domain Name is confusingly similar to its RBC and RBC BANK trademarks (the "Marks"), that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Domain Name and that the Respondent registered and is using the Domain Name in bad faith within the meaning of paragraph 4(b)(iv) of the Policy.
The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant's contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
For this Complaint to succeed in relation to the Domain Name the Complainant must prove that:
(i) the Domain Name is 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 Name; and
(iii) the Domain Name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar
The Complainant has uncontested rights in the Marks, both by virtue of its trademark registrations and as a result of the goodwill and reputation acquired through its use of the Marks over a number of years. Ignoring the generic Top-Level Domain ("gTLD") ".com", the Domain Name comprises the entirety of the RBC and RBC BANK trademarks together with the generic word "apps". In the view of the Panel, the addition of this element does not detract from the confusing similarity between the Domain Name and the Marks. Indeed, given the modern propensity of banks to offer mobile banking options, the addition of "apps" is likely to add to the likelihood of confusion. Accordingly, the Panel finds that the Domain Name is confusingly similar to a trademark in which the Complainant has rights.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
The Complainant has made out a strong prima facie case that the Respondent could have no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Domain Name. The Respondent has used the Domain Name not in connection with a bona fide offering of goods or services, but for a website either promulgating computer viruses or malware or, latterly, featuring pay-per-click links to third party websites, including those referring to the Complainant but leading to websites with no connection to the Complainant. There is no suggestion that the Respondent has ever been known by the Domain Name. The Respondent has chosen not to respond to the Complaint or to take any steps to counter the prima facie case established by the Complainant. In the circumstances, the Panel finds that the Respondent does not have any rights or legitimate interests in respect of the Domain Name.
C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith
Since the Domain Name comprises the trademark RBC BANK, and in light of the notoriety of the Complainant, the Panel is in no doubt that the Respondent had the Complainant and its rights in the Marks in mind when it registered the Domain Name. The Respondent has variously used the Domain Name to promulgate computer malware and for pay-per-click links to third party websites, including links that falsely refer to the Complainant. In the Panel's view, the legitimate inference is that the Respondent undertook such activity with a view to commercial gain. Accordingly, the Panel considers that this amounts to paradigm bad faith registration and use for the purposes 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 Name <rbcbankapps.com> be transferred to the Complainant.
Date: July 18, 2017