WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
WIPRO Limited v. 王皓轩 (Wang Hao Xuan)
Case No. D2021-2294
1. The Parties
The Complainant is WIPRO Limited, India, represented by K&S Partners, India.
The Respondent is 王皓轩 (Wang Hao Xuan), China.
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The disputed domain name <wiproindustries.com> is registered with Shanghai Meicheng Technology Information Development Co., Ltd. (the “Registrar”).
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) in English on July 15, 2021. On July 15, 2021, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain name. On July 16, 2021, the Registrar transmitted by email to the Center its verification response disclosing registrant and contact information for the disputed domain name which differed from the named Respondent and contact information in the Complaint. The Center sent an email communication to the Complainant on July 21, 2021, providing the registrant and contact information disclosed by the Registrar, and inviting the Complainant to submit an amendment to the Complaint. The Complainant filed in English an amended Complaint on July 23, 2021.
On July 21, 2021, the Center transmitted an email communication to the Parties in English and Chinese regarding the language of the administrative proceeding. On July 23, 2021, the Complainant confirmed its request that English be the language of the administrative proceeding. The Respondent did not comment on the language of the administrative proceeding.
The Center verified that the Complaint together with the amended 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 in English and Chinese of the Complaint, and the proceeding commenced on July 28, 2021. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was August 17, 2021. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent’s default on August 18, 2021.
The Center appointed Sebastian M.W. Hughes as the sole panelist in this matter on August 31, 2021. 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 company incorporated in India in 1945 as a vegetable oil manufacturer under the name Western India Vegetable Products Limited. Thereafter, the Complainant changed its name to Wipro Product Limited with effect from June 17, 1977. The Complainant subsequently changed its name to WIPRO Limited with effect from April 28, 1984.
Since the year 1977, the Complainant has been known as WIPRO. The name WIPRO is a coined term and is derived from and is an abbreviation of the Complainant’s original company name.
The Complainant is a leading global information technology, consulting and business process services company, listed on the National Stock Exchange of India (under the trading name WIPRO), the Bombay Stock Exchange, the New York Stock Exchange, and the NASDAQ. The Complainant’s subsidiary companies in China are Wipro LLC, Wipro Shanghai Limited, Wipro Chengdu Limited, and Wipro Technologies Limited.
The Complainant is the owner of numerous registrations in jurisdictions worldwide for the trade mark WIPRO (the “Trade Mark”), including Indian registration No. 299508, registered on September 24,1975; and International registration No. 949885 (designating China), registered on July 11, 2007.
The Complainant is also the owner of numerous domain names comprising the Trade Mark, including <wipro.com>, <wipro.org> and <wipro.co.in>.
The Respondent is apparently an individual resident in China.
C. The Disputed Domain Name
The disputed domain name was registered on January 6, 2021.
D. Use of the Disputed Domain Name
The disputed domain name is currently not been used in respect of an active website, but it used to resolve to a website displaying jewellery items by using third parties’ brands, and had been used in respect of an English language fraudulent scam operated by fraudsters impersonating the Complainant and targeting Indian nationals.
5. Parties’ Contentions
The Complainant contends that the disputed domain name is identical or confusingly similar to the Trade Mark; the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the disputed domain name; and the disputed domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.
The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
6.1. Language of the Proceeding
The language of the Registration Agreement for the disputed domain name is Chinese. Pursuant to the Rules, paragraph 11(a), in the absence of an agreement between the Parties, or unless specified otherwise in the Registration Agreement, the language of the administrative proceeding shall be the language of the Registration Agreement.
Paragraph 11(a) of the Rules allows the Panel to determine the language of the proceeding having regard to all the circumstances. In particular, it is established practice to take paragraphs 10(b) and (c) of the Rules into consideration for the purpose of determining the language of the proceeding, in order to ensure fairness to the Parties and the maintenance of an inexpensive and expeditious avenue for resolving domain name disputes. Language requirements should not lead to undue burdens being placed on the Parties and undue delay to the proceeding.
The Complainant requested that the language of the proceeding be English, for several reasons, including the fact the underlying fraudulent WhatsApp messages sent in relation to the disputed domain name are in English. The Respondent did not file a response in this proceeding and did not make any submissions with respect to the language of the proceeding.
In exercising its discretion to use a language other than that of the Registration Agreement, the Panel has to exercise such discretion judicially in the spirit of fairness and justice to both Parties, taking into account all relevant circumstances of the case, including matters such as the Parties’ ability to understand and use the proposed language, time and costs.
The Panel finds there is sufficient evidence to suggest the likely possibility that the Respondent is conversant in the English language. The Panel notes also that the Respondent has chosen not to contest this proceeding, and that all of the Center’s communications with the Parties have been sent in English and Chinese.
The Panel is also mindful of the need to ensure the proceeding is conducted in a timely and cost effective manner.
In all the circumstances, the Panel therefore finds it is not foreseeable that the Respondent would be prejudiced, should English be adopted as the language of the proceeding.
Having considered all the matters above, the Panel determines under paragraph 11(a) of the Rules that the language of the proceeding shall be English.
6.2. Substantive Elements of the Policy
The Complainant must prove each of the three elements in paragraph 4(a) of the Policy in order to prevail.
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar
The disputed domain name incorporates the entirety of the Trade Mark (see WIPO Overview of WIPO Panel Views on Selected UDRP Questions, Third Edition (“WIPO Overview 3.0”), section 1.7) together with the word “industries”.
Where a relevant trade mark is recognisable within a disputed domain name, the addition of other terms (whether descriptive, geographical, pejorative, meaningless, or otherwise) does not prevent a finding of confusing similarity under the first element (see WIPO Overview 3.0, section 1.8).
The disputed domain is also confusing similar to the Complainant’s <wipro.com> domain name.
The Panel therefore finds that the disputed domain name is confusingly similar to the Trade Mark.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
Paragraph 4(c) of the Policy provides a list of non-exhaustive circumstances any of which is sufficient to demonstrate that a respondent has rights or legitimate interests in a disputed domain name:
(i) before any notice to the respondent of the dispute, the respondent’s use of, or demonstrable preparations to use, the disputed domain name or a name corresponding to the disputed domain name in connection with a bona fide offering of goods or services; or
(ii) the respondent (as an individual, business, or other organization) has been commonly known by the disputed domain name even if the respondent has acquired no trade mark or service mark rights; or
(iii) the respondent is making a legitimate noncommercial or fair use of the disputed domain name, without intent for commercial gain to misleadingly divert consumers or to tarnish the trade mark or service mark at issue.
The Complainant has not authorised, licensed, or permitted the Respondent to register or use the disputed domain name or to use the Trade Mark. The Panel finds on the record that there is therefore a prima facie case that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name, and the burden is thus on the Respondent to produce evidence to rebut this presumption.
The Respondent has failed to show that he has acquired any trade mark rights in respect of the disputed domain name or that the disputed domain name has been used in connection with a bona fide offering of goods or services. To the contrary, the disputed domain name has not been used with respect to any active website, but has been used in the furtherance of a fraud designed to lure unsuspecting Indian nationals to make payments to the fraudsters, under the misapprehension that they are dealing with the Complainant.
There has been no evidence adduced to show that the Respondent has been commonly known by the disputed domain name; and there has been no evidence adduced to show that the Respondent is making a legitimate noncommercial or fair use of the disputed domain name.
In addition, the Panel notes the nature of the disputed domain name, which carries a high risk of implied association (see WIPO Overview 3.0, section 2.5.1).
The Panel finds that the Respondent has failed to produce any evidence to rebut the Complainant’s prima facie case that the Respondent lacks rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name. The Panel therefore finds that the Respondent lacks rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name.
C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith
In light of the manner of use of the disputed domain name highlighted in section 6.2.B above, the Panel concludes that the disputed domain name has been registered and is being used in bad faith.
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 name <wiproindustries.com> be transferred to the Complainant.
Sebastian M.W. Hughes
Dated: September 14, 2021