BODIS

Amazon : #Malware spreading #domain typo registered in 1998 lost in #UDRP

ZFBot

UDRP: Loss for the Respondent.

An obvious Amazon typo, Amazo.com, was lost via the UDRP process at the National Arbitration Forum.

Registered in 1998, Amazo.com spread malware, according to the UDRP, filed by Amazon technologies, Inc.:

“Respondent currently uses the <amazo.com> domain name to deliver malware or facilitate phishing/tech support scams. The domain name initially resolves to an OpenDNS warning “This site is blocked due to a phishing threat.” Bypassing the warning redirects to a purported “Microsoft Official” page located at <failure-0tamr5.stream> which generates various alerts and warnings which result in a pop-up loop users can only exit by closing their browser via Task Manager.”

There was not response by the Respondent in this UDRP, that are most likely based in China, as the WHOIS information looks bogus. The domain has been with Moniker for a few years.

Charles K. McCotter, Jr, sole panelist, ordered the domain Amazo.com to be transferred to the Complainant.

Full details of this case follow:

Amazon Technologies, Inc. v. Domain Admin / LPS Ltd.

Claim Number: FA1801001769456

PARTIES

Complainant is Amazon Technologies, Inc. (“Complainant”), represented by James F. Struthers of Richard Law Group, Inc., Texas, USA. Respondent is Domain Admin / LPS Ltd. (“Respondent”), United Kingdom.

REGISTRAR AND DISPUTED DOMAIN NAME

The domain name at issue is <amazo.com>, registered with Moniker Online Services LLC.

PANEL

The undersigned certifies that he has acted independently and impartially and, to the best of his knowledge, has no known conflict in serving as Panelist in this proceeding.

The Honorable Charles K. McCotter, Jr. (Ret.) as Panelist.

PROCEDURAL HISTORY

Complainant submitted a Complaint to the Forum electronically on January 29, 2018; the Forum received payment on January 29, 2018.

On Feb 8, 2018, Moniker Online Services LLC confirmed by e-mail to the Forum that the <amazo.com> domain name is registered with Moniker Online Services LLC and that Respondent is the current registrant of the name. Moniker Online Services LLC has verified that Respondent is bound by the Moniker Online Services LLC registration agreement and has thereby agreed to resolve domain disputes brought by third parties in accordance with ICANN’s Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Policy”).

On February 12, 2018, the Forum served the Complaint and all Annexes, including a Written Notice of the Complaint, setting a deadline of March 5, 2018 by which Respondent could file a Response to the Complaint, via e-mail to all entities and persons listed on Respondent’s registration as technical, administrative, and billing contacts, and to postmaster@amazo.com. Also on February 12, 2018, the Written Notice of the Complaint, notifying Respondent of the e-mail addresses served and the deadline for a Response, was transmitted to Respondent via post and fax, to all entities and persons listed on Respondent’s registration as technical, administrative and billing contacts.

Having received no response from Respondent, the Forum transmitted to the parties a Notification of Respondent Default.

On March 7, 2018, pursuant to Complainant’s request to have the dispute decided by a single-member Panel, the Forum appointed the Honorable Charles K. McCotter, Jr. (Ret.) as Panelist.

Having reviewed the communications records, the Administrative Panel (the “Panel”) finds that the Forum has discharged its responsibility under Paragraph 2(a) of the Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Rules”) “to employ reasonably available means calculated to achieve actual notice to Respondent” through submission of Electronic and Written Notices, as defined in Rule 1 and Rule 2. Therefore, the Panel may issue its decision based on the documents submitted and in accordance with the ICANN Policy, ICANN Rules, the Forum’s Supplemental Rules and any rules and principles of law that the Panel deems applicable, without the benefit of any response from Respondent.

RELIEF SOUGHT

Complainant requests that the domain name be transferred from Respondent to Complainant.

PARTIES’ CONTENTIONS

A. Complainant

Complainant, Amazon Technologies, Inc., is one of the world’s largest online retailers, and uses the AMAZON mark to provide and market its services. Complainant has rights in the AMAZON mark based upon its registration of the mark with trademark authorities all over the world, including the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) (e.g. Reg. No. 2,078,496, registered Jul. 15, 1997). Respondent’s <amazo.com> domain name is confusingly similar to Complainant’s AMAZON mark, as the domain name consists entirely of the mark—less the letter “n”—and the “.com” generic top-level domain (“gTLD”).

Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the <amazo.com> domain name. Respondent is not commonly known by the disputed domain name, nor has Complainant authorized or licensed Respondent to use the AMAZON mark. Respondent’s use of the disputed domain name does not amount to a bona fide offering of goods or services or a legitimate noncommercial or fair use. Rather, the domain name is used to deliver malware or facilitate phishing/tech support scams. Additionally, the domain name previously redirected to an alternative/competing online retailer via click revenue redirection.

Respondent registered and is using the <amazo.com> domain name in bad faith. Respondent uses the domain name to disrupt Complainant’s business and divert Internet users for commercial gain. Furthermore, Respondent engaged in the practice of typosquatting by registering a domain name which is a misspelling of Complainant’s AMAZON mark. Additionally, Respondent’s use of the domain name to engage in phishing and the distribution of malware warnings is further evidence of bad faith. Respondent also provides false WHOS information. Finally, Respondent had actual knowledge of Complainant and its rights at the time it registered and subsequently used the domain name.

B. Respondent

Respondent failed to submit a Response in this proceeding.

FINDINGS

Complainant, Amazon Technologies, Inc., is one of the world’s largest online retailers, and uses the AMAZON mark to provide and market its services. Complainant has rights in the AMAZON mark based upon its registration of the mark with trademark authorities all over the world, including the USPTO (e.g. Reg. No. 2,078,496, registered Jul. 15, 1997). Respondent’s <amazo.com> domain name is confusingly similar to Complainant’s AMAZON mark.

Respondent, Domain Admin / LPS Ltd., registered the <amazo.com> domain name on January 2, 1998.

Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the <amazo.com> domain name. The domain name is used to deliver malware or facilitate phishing/tech support scams. Additionally, the domain name previously redirected to an alternative/competing online retailer via click revenue redirection.

Respondent registered and is using the <amazo.com> domain name in bad faith.
DISCUSSION

Paragraph 15(a) of the Rules instructs this Panel to “decide a complaint on the basis of the statements and documents submitted in accordance with the Policy, these Rules and any rules and principles of law that it deems applicable.”

Paragraph 4(a) of the Policy requires that Complainant must prove each of the following three elements to obtain an order that a domain name should be cancelled or transferred:

(1) the domain name registered by Respondent is identical or confusingly similar to a trademark or service mark in which Complainant has rights; and

(2) Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in respect of the domain name; and

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

In view of Respondent’s failure to submit a response, the Panel shall decide this administrative proceeding on the basis of Complainant’s undisputed representations pursuant to paragraphs 5(f), 14(a) and 15(a) of the Rules and draw such inferences it considers appropriate pursuant to paragraph 14(b) of the Rules. The Panel is entitled to accept all reasonable allegations and inferences set forth in the Complaint as true unless the evidence is clearly contradictory. See Vertical Solutions Mgmt., Inc. v. webnet-marketing, inc., FA 95095 (Forum July 31, 2000) (holding that the respondent’s failure to respond allows all reasonable inferences of fact in the allegations of the complaint to be deemed true); see also Talk City, Inc. v. Robertson, D2000-0009 (WIPO Feb. 29, 2000) (“In the absence of a response, it is appropriate to accept as true all allegations of the Complaint.”).

Identical and/or Confusingly Similar

Complainant has rights in the AMAZON mark under Policy ¶ 4(a)(i) based upon registration of the mark with the USPTO. See Home Depot Product Authority, LLC v. Samy Yosef / Express Transporting, FA 1738124 (Forum July 28, 2017) (finding that registration with the USPTO was sufficient to establish the complainant’s rights in the HOME DEPOT mark).

Respondent’s <amazo.com> domain name is confusingly similar to the AMAZON mark, as the name consists entirely of the mark—less the letter “n”—and the “.com” gTLD.

Rights or Legitimate Interests

Respondent has no rights or legitimate interests in the <amazo.com> domain name as Respondent is not commonly known by the name, nor has Complainant authorized Respondent to use the AMAZON mark. Where a response is lacking, WHOIS information can support a finding that a respondent is not commonly known by a disputed domain name, especially where a privacy service has been engaged. See Philip Morris USA Inc. v. Usama Ramzan, FA 1737750 (Forum July 26, 2017) (“We begin by noting that Complainant contends, and Respondent does not deny, that Respondent has not been commonly known by the <marlborocoupon.us> domain name, and that Complainant has not authorized Respondent to use the MARLBORO mark in any way. Moreover, the pertinent WHOIS information identifies the registrant of the domain name only as “Usama Ramzan,” which does not resemble the domain name. On this record, we conclude that Respondent has not been commonly known by the challenged domain name so as to have acquired rights to or legitimate interests in it within the purview of Policy ¶ 4(c)(ii).”); see also Kohler Co. v. Privacy Service, FA 1621573 (Forum July 2, 2015) (holding that the respondent was not commonly known by the disputed domain name pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(c)(ii) where “Privacy Service” was listed as the registrant of the disputed domain name). Here, a privacy service was used by Respondent, but was lifted as a result of the commencement of this proceeding. The WHOIS information of record identifies the Registrant of the <amazo.com> domain name as “Domain Admin / LPS Ltd.” and no information on the record indicates Respondent was authorized to register a domain name incorporating Complainant’s mark. Therefore, Respondent has not been commonly known by the <amazo.com> domain name.

Respondent’s lack of rights or legitimate interests in the <amazo.com> domain name is demonstrated by its failure to use the name to make a bona fide offering of goods or services or for a legitimate noncommercial or fair use. Instead, Respondent previously used the domain name to resolve to a competing website via click revenue redirection. Such use of a domain name is not indicative of rights or legitimate interests in the name per Policy ¶¶ 4(c)(i) or (iii). See Invesco Ltd. v. Premanshu Rana, FA 1733167 (Forum July 10, 2017) (“Use of a domain name to divert Internet users to a competing website is not a bona fide offering of goods or services or a legitimate noncommercial or fair use.”) see also Summit Group, LLC v. LSO, Ltd., FA 758981 (Forum Sept. 14, 2006) (finding that the respondent’s use of the complainant’s LIFESTYLE LOUNGE mark to redirect Internet users to respondent’s own website for commercial gain does not constitute either a bona fide offering of goods or services pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(c)(i), or a legitimate noncommercial or fair use pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(c)(iii)). Specifically, the domain name previously diverted Internet users, via click revenue redirection at track.tkbo.com, to <kohls.com>, an online retail store.

Respondent currently uses the <amazo.com> domain name to deliver malware or facilitate phishing/tech support scams. The domain name initially resolves to an OpenDNS warning “This site is blocked due to a phishing threat.” Bypassing the warning redirects to a purported “Microsoft Official” page located at <failure-0tamr5.stream> which generates various alerts and warnings which result in a pop-up loop users can only exit by closing their browser via Task Manager. Such use shows a respondent’s lack of rights and legitimate interests in a domain name per Policy ¶ 4(a)(ii). See Morgan Stanley v. Zhange Sheng Xu / Zhang Sheng Xu, FA 1600534 (Forum Feb. 26, 2015) (“The Panel agrees that the respondent’s apparent phishing attempt provides further indication that the respondent lacks any rights or legitimate interests in the disputed domain name under Policy ¶ 4(a)(ii).”); see also Baker v. J M, FA 1259254 (Forum June 12, 2009) (concluding that the hosting of a virus that activates when an Internet user accesses the resolving website does not demonstrate rights and legitimate interests in a disputed domain name under Policy ¶ 4(a)(ii)).

Registration and Use in Bad Faith

Respondent’s bad faith is shown by its former use of the <amazo.com> domain name to promote alternative online retail services. Use of a domain name to redirect to a complainant’s competitors can demonstrate a respondent’s bad faith per Policy ¶¶ 4(b)(iii) and (iv). See Amazon Technologies, Inc. v. Tammy Caffey, FA 1576228 (Forum Sept. 22, 2014) (“Respondent’s promotion of Complainant’s competitors on the <kindlestore.com> website disrupts Complainant business and demonstrates Respondent’s bad faith under Policy ¶ 4(b)(iii).”); see also Clark Equipment Company v. Namase Patel / Mumbai Domains, FA 1566288 (Forum July 30, 2014) (“The Panel observes that the Respondent’s disputed domain name leads to a website that features links to products that directly compete with Complainant’s products. The Panel determines that Respondent is attempting to mislead consumers as to Complainant’s affiliation with the disputed domain name, and Respondent likely profits from the resulting confusion. Therefore, the Panel finds evidence of bad faith pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(b)(iv).”).

Further, the <amazo.com> domain name’s association with phishing and malware warnings is further evidence Respondent registered and used the domain name in bad faith. Use of a domain name for phishing or distribution of malware can be independent evidence of bad faith per Policy ¶ 4(a)(iii). See Klabzuba Oil & Gas, Inc. v. LAKHPAT SINGH BHANDARI, FA 1625750 (Forum July 17, 2015) (“Respondent uses the <klabzuba-oilgas.com> domain to engage in phishing, which means Respondent registered and uses the domain name in bad faith under Policy ¶ 4(a)(iii).”); see also Microsoft Corporation v. ABK / George Owens a/k/a Rohan / Rohan Suha, FA 1473573 (Forum Jan. 21, 2013) (holding that because the respondent used the disputed domain name to attempt to facilitate the download of malicious software to the computers of the website’s visitors, the respondent had registered and used the disputed domain name in bad faith under Policy ¶ 4(a)(iii).

Complainant also contends that in light of the fame and notoriety of Complainant’s AMAZON mark, it is inconceivable that Respondent could have registered the <amazo.com> domain name without actual knowledge of Complainant’s rights in the mark. Respondent had actual knowledge of Complainant’s rights in the AMAZON mark prior to registering the <amazo.com> domain name. Therefore, Respondent registered and used the domain name in bad faith under Policy ¶ 4(a)(iii). See Orbitz Worldwide, LLC v. Domain Librarian, FA 1535826 (Forum Feb. 6, 2014) (“the Panel here finds actual knowledge through the name used for the domain and the use made of it.”).

Also, Respondent engaged in typosquatting, thereby showing bad faith registration and use per Policy ¶ 4(a)(iii). See Homer TLC, Inc. v. Artem Ponomarev, FA 1623825 (Forum July 20, 2015) (“Finally, under this head of the Policy, it is evident that the <homededpot.com> domain name is an instance of typosquatting, which is the deliberate misspelling of the mark of another in a domain name, done to take advantage of common typing errors made by Internet users in entering into a web browser the name of an enterprise with which they would like to do business online. Typosquatting is independent evidence of bad faith in the registration and use of a domain name.”).

Finally, Respondent has provided false contact information in connection with the registration of the <amazo.com> domain name. Use of false contact information in registering a domain name is evidence of bad faith registration per Policy ¶ 4(a)(iii). See Farouk Systems, Inc. v. Jack King / SLB, FA 1618704 (Forum June 19, 2015) (finding bad faith registration and use pursuant to Policy ¶ 4(a)(iii) where the respondent had provided false contact information when registering the disputed domain name).

DECISION

Complainant having established all three elements required under the ICANN Policy, the Panel concludes that relief shall be GRANTED.

Accordingly, it is Ordered that the <amazo.com> domain name be TRANSFERRED from Respondent to Complainant.

The Honorable Charles K. McCotter, Jr. (Ret.), Panelist

Dated: March 21, 2018


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Comments

2 Responses to “Amazon : #Malware spreading #domain typo registered in 1998 lost in #UDRP”
  1. VM Freeman says:

    Malware aside and concentrating only on IP, the WIPO automatically stating that the term Amazo is a typo for Amazon is specious logic, as the term has been in use by DC comics for decades (since 1960): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amazo

    If anyone has a right to the domain, it’s DC Comics/Time Warner.

    VM Freeman
    DomainRecap.com

  2. DomainGang says:

    VM Freeman – It’s all about use; e.g. no Amazo “fan” site was built, instead it passed off as a sales point for merchandise and dished out malware. Famous mark owners go after obvious typos, that’s quite common.

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