WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
ADMINISTRATIVE PANEL DECISION
Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. v. Gregory Wilson / Infotech Ltd.
Case No. D2017-0956
1. The Parties
Complainant is Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. of Houston, Texas, United States of America ("United States"), represented by Polsinelli PC Law firm, United States.
Respondent is Gregory Wilson / Infotech Ltd. of Olathe, Kansas, United States.
2. The Domain Name and Registrar
The disputed domain name <halliburton-job.com> is registered with PDR Ltd. d/b/a PublicDomainRegistry.com (the "Registrar").
3. Procedural History
The Complaint was filed with the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center (the "Center") on May 11, 2017. On May 12, 2017, the Center transmitted by email to the Registrar a request for registrar verification in connection with the disputed domain name. On May 15, 2017, 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 and 4, the Center formally notified Respondent of the Complaint, and the proceedings commenced on May 17, 2017. In accordance with the Rules, paragraph 5, the due date for Response was June 6, 2017. Respondent did not submit any response. Accordingly, the Center notified Respondent of Respondent's default on June 7, 2017.
The Center appointed Lawrence K. Nodine as the sole panelist in this matter on June 19, 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
Complainant Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. is a multinational corporation that provides products and services to the oil and gas industry. Founded in 1919, Complainant operates in over 80 countries and employs a workforce of more than 80,000. Complainant has used its name as a trademark for more than 80 years, and it registered the HALLIBURTON mark in the United States in June 2002 (Registration Nos. 2,575,819 and 2,575,840). Worldwide, Complainant owns more than 370 other trademark registrations for the HALLIBURTON mark. In addition, Complainant owns various domain names incorporating its HALLIBURTON mark and operates the website "www.halliburton.com".
Respondent Gregory Wilson resides in the United States and registered the disputed domain name <halliburton-job.com> on April 10, 2017. The disputed domain name does not resolve to a website. An Internet search for "www.halliburton-job.com" produces a "page cannot be displayed" message and there is no Internet archive of this website.
On the day Respondent registered the disputed domain name, a third party reportedly received an email sent from an address incorporating the disputed domain name (email@example.com). Purportedly "From: Halliburton Oil and Gas [mailto: firstname.lastname@example.org]," the subject of the email was "Halliburton Job Notification." The email informed the recipient that "you are needed as an expatriate in the on-going Oil and Gas Recruitment in Canada" and asked the recipient to "send your CV/resume and certificates to back up your qualifications states on your CV to us." The signature block read: "Head, Human Resources Dept. for ExxonMobil". A reverse WhoIs search shows that Respondent is also the Registrant of the domain name <exxonm0bil.com>.
5. Parties' Contentions
Complainant asserts that it has established rights in the mark HALLIBURTON and that the disputed domain name is confusingly similar to its HALLIBURTON mark, merely incorporating "-job" as a logical add-on.
Complainant also asserts that it is not affiliated with Respondent, that the disputed domain name is not derived from Respondent's name and that the only use Respondent has made of the disputed domain name has been in furtherance of a fraudulent email and job offer scheme designed to obtain personal information from others in Complainant's name. Complainant concludes Respondent lacks rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name.
As to Respondent's bad faith, Complainant contends that this is evident from Respondent's attempt to obtain personal information from job seekers by relying on the confusion created by the disputed domain name's similarity to the HALLIBURTON mark and by impersonating a human resources employee of an oil and gas company. According to Complainant, Respondent's reference to ExxonMobil in the April 10, 2017 communication, along with Respondent's registration of <exxonm0bil.com>, reveals Respondent's "scheme of fraud on multiple oil and gas companies."
Respondent did not reply to Complainant's contentions.
6. Discussion and Findings
A. Identical or Confusingly Similar
Complainant's trademark registrations established that it has rights in the HALLIBURTON trademark. The disputed domain name fully incorporates the HALLIBURTON mark. The addition of "-job" to the mark does nothing to dispel the potential for confusion. On the contrary, it exacerbates the confusion, luring email recipients to respond to Respondent's communications in the mistaken belief they are communicating with Complainant.
Complainant has satisfied paragraph 4(a)(i) of the Policy.
B. Rights or Legitimate Interests
Complainant has presented a prima facie case for Respondent's lack of rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name. Respondent has failed to offer rebuttal evidence. Complainant has satisfied paragraph 4(a)(ii) of the Policy.
C. Registered and Used in Bad Faith
Respondent registered and has used the disputed domain name in bad faith. Considering the fame of HALLIBURTON mark in the United States, Respondent was probably aware of the mark and of Complainant's rights in it when he registered the disputed domain name. This awareness is evident from the April 10, 2017 email. Sent on the very day the disputed domain name was registered and incorporating the disputed domain name in the address, the email claimed to be from none other than "Halliburton Oil and Gas" and was ostensibly for the purpose of recruiting employees for the oil and gas industry.
The evidence supports the inference that Respondent sought to use the disputed domain name to create a false association with Complainant to promote a phishing scam. Both the "From" and "Subject" lines of the April 10, 2017 falsely suggest that the email is from Complainant. The reference to "ExxonMobil Oil and Gas" in the email's signature block, does not dispel the confusion created by the prominent use of Complainant's mark, although it does suggest a pattern of clumsily executed phishing.
Phishing is bad faith use under the Policy. The examples listed in paragraph 4(b) of the Policy are "without limitation." "[T]he use of an email address associated with the disputed domain name, to send a phishing email for the purposes of dishonest activity is in itself evidence that the disputed domain name was registered and is being used in bad faith." BHP Billiton Innovation Pty Ltd v. Domains By Proxy LLC / Douglass Johnson, WIPO Case No. D2016-0364.
The Panel finds that the disputed domain name was registered and 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, <halliburton-job.com> be transferred to Complainant.
Lawrence K. Nodine
Date: June 30, 2017