WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center

ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION

DPDgroup International Services GmbH & Co. KG v. Withheld for Privacy Purposes, Privacy service provided by Withheld for Privacy ehf / Mathew Jhonson, Teddy Builders ltd

Case No. D2021-2575

1. The Parties

The Complainant is DPDgroup International Services GmbH & Co. KG, Germany, represented by Fidal, France.

The Respondent is Withheld for Privacy Purposes, Privacy service provided by Withheld for Privacy ehf, Iceland / Mathew Jhonson, Teddy Builders ltd., United Kingdom.

2. The Domain Name and Registrar

The disputed domain name <dpd-help.com> is registered with NameCheap, Inc. (the “Registrar”).

3. Procedural History

The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the “Center”) on August 9, 2021. On August 9, 2021, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain name. On August 9, 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 August 11, 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 an amendment to the Complaint on August 12, 2021.

The Center verified that the Complaint together with the amendment to 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 August 16, 2021. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was September 5, 2021. The Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified the Respondent’s default on September 7, 2021.

The Center appointed Fabrizio Bedarida as the sole panelist in this matter on September 14, 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 in this administrative proceeding is the German company DPDgroup International Services GmbH & Co. KG. The Complainant has been in operation since 1977, and has 32,000 pickup points in 230 different countries.

The Complainant has proven to be the owner of the DPD trademark, which enjoys protection through several registrations.

The Complainant is inter alia the owner of:

- European Union trademark DPD DYNAMIC PARCEL DISTRIBUTION registration No. 6159487, registered on August 19, 2009.
- International trademark DPD (device) registration No. 761146, registered on May 26, 2001.
- International trademark DPD (device) registration No. 1217471, registered on March 28, 2014.
- International trademark DPD GROUP (device) registration No. 1271522, registered on August 25, 2015.

The Complainant is also the owner of the domain name <dpd.com>, reserved on March 20, 1991, and many others including the following: <dpd.asia>, <dpd.iz>, <dpd.ch>, <dpd.com>, <dpd.net>, <dpd.in>, <dpd.lu>, <dpd.fr>, <dpd.eu>, <dpd.ru>, <dpdgroup>, and <dpd-group>.

The disputed domain name was registered on April 26, 2021.

At the time of filing the Complaint, the disputed domain name resolved to a website where the Complainant’s trademarks, as well as services complementary to those of the Complainant, are offered and references to the Complainant, apparently aiming to impersonate the Complainant or at least to suggest a link with it, are also displayed. The disputed domain name no longer resolves to an active website.

5. Parties’ Contentions

A. Complainant

The Complainant claims that the disputed domain name is confusingly similar to the Complainant’s registered trademark; that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests whatsoever with respect to the disputed domain name; and that the Respondent registered and is using the disputed domain name in bad faith.

In more detail, the Complainant claims that the Respondent is deliberately creating confusion with the Complainant’s business by:

- Using the Complainant’s identity, i.e. the Respondent is deliberately using the identity of the Complainant with the intention of creating confusion with the Complainant in order to give credibility to its scams and phishing operations.

- Reproducing the Complainant’s trademark without authorization, as well as its graphic layout, in the website linked to the disputed domain name.

- Offering services complementary to those offered by the Complainant.

The Complainant thus affirmed that the Respondent has sought to deceive Internet users who arrive at its website into thinking that it is the Complainant’s website or is associated with the Complainant, and that this does not amount to legitimate or bona fide conduct, but on the contrary supports an inference that the Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name and that the disputed domain name was registered and is being used in bad faith.

B. Respondent

The Respondent did not reply to the Complainant’s contentions.

6. Discussion and Findings

In order for the Complainant to obtain a transfer of the disputed domain name, paragraph 4(a) of the Policy requires that the Complainant must demonstrate to the Panel that:

(i) the disputed 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 disputed domain name; and

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

A. Identical or Confusingly Similar

The Complainant has established rights in the DPD trademarks.

The disputed domain name contains the Complainant’s trademark followed by a hyphen and the term “help”.

Section 1.8 of the WIPO Overview of WIPO Panel Views on Selected UDRP Questions, Third Edition (“WIPO Overview 3.0”) states: “Where the relevant trademark is recognizable within the disputed domain name, the addition of other terms (whether descriptive, geographical, pejorative, meaningless, or otherwise) would not prevent a finding of confusing similarity under the first element. The nature of such additional term(s) may however bear on assessment of the second and third elements.”

Therefore, the Panel finds the disputed domain name to be confusingly similar to the DPD trademark in which the Complainant has rights.

Accordingly, the Panel finds that the Complainant has satisfied paragraph 4(a)(i) of the Policy.

B. Rights or Legitimate Interests

This panel finds that the Complainant has made a prima facie case that the respondent does not have rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name. The Respondent does not appear to be commonly known by the name “dpd” or by any similar name. The Respondent has no connection or affiliation with the Complainant, and the Complainant has not licensed or otherwise authorized the Respondent to use or register any domain name incorporating the Complainant’s trademark. The Respondent does not appear to make any legitimate noncommercial or fair use of the disputed domain name, nor any use in connection with a bona fide offering of goods or services. Finally, the Respondent has not replied to the Complainant’s contentions, claiming any rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name.

Furthermore, considering the broader circumstances of the disputed domain name, the construction of the disputed domain name itself effectively impersonates or suggests sponsorship or endorsement by the Complainant, which cannot constitute fair use. See section 2.5.1 of the WIPO Overview 3.0.

The panel finds that the Complainant has satisfied paragraph 4(a)(ii) of the Policy.

C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith

The Panel, on the basis of the evidence presented, accepts and agrees with the Complainant’s contentions that the disputed domain name was registered in bad faith and that it has been used in bad faith.

The Panel finds that the Respondent was likely aware of the DPD trademark and of the existence of the Complainant and of its activity.

In fact, the website linked to the disputed domain name displayed the Complainant’s trademarks and logo and purported to provide services complementary to those offered by the Complainant, and in addition to this, at the bottom of its page, where the details of the owner (or at least of the handler) of the website are usually indicated, only the trademark and logo of the Complainant are displayed.

This Panel believes that, on the balance of probabilities, the above shows that the choice of the disputed domain name cannot be a coincidence, and thus indicates the Respondent’s knowledge of the Complainant’s trademark and activity when registering the disputed domain name.

In addition, from the above-illustrated use of the disputed domain name and related website, it is apparent that the Respondent has intentionally attempted to attract, for commercial gain, Internet users to its website by creating confusion with the Complainant’s trademark, and this amounts to an inference of bad faith registration and use of the disputed domain name.

Inference of bad faith registration and use of the disputed domain name is also given by the fact that the Respondent deliberately chose to conceal its identity by means of a privacy protection service. While the use of a privacy service does not in and of itself constitute bad faith under the Policy, the manner in which such service is used in the present case is deemed to contribute to a finding of bad faith.

Moreover, another indication of bad faith registration and use of the disputed domain name is the fact that the Respondent has not denied the assertions of bad faith made by the Complainant in this proceeding. Hence, the Panel finds that if the Respondent had legitimate purposes for registering and using the disputed domain name, it would have responded to these assertions.

Lastly, the disputed domain name currently does not resolve to an active website. The current passive holding of the disputed domain name does not prevent a finding of bad faith. See section 3.3 of the WIPO Overview 3.0. Rather, the change in use further supports an inference of bad faith.

Accordingly, the Panel finds, on the basis of the evidence presented, that the Respondent registered and is using the disputed domain name in bad faith.

Therefore, the Complainant has satisfied paragraph 4(a)(iii) of the Policy.

7. Decision

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 <dpd-help.com> be transferred to the Complainant.

Fabrizio Bedarida
Sole Panelist
Date: September 27, 2021