.CN Chinese Domain Name Scams From China

US Now Being Shanghai'd too - Australia: Shanghai'd Domain Names

JunkUnited States of America and the World take WARNING!

.CN Domain Name Registrars From China Pulling Fast Ones in America.

The following letter was submitted by a subscriber. The China Registrar is trying to get the company to register the domain name through www.soofa.org.cn in order to supposedly protect it from someone else that is trying to register it, or has registered the domain name with the .CN Top Level Domain.

Note: Company name of individual has been changed in this published version to protect the privacy of the company. Also, the misspellings and poor syntax are left intact, as was received. Adjusted some of the spacings between sentences and words.

from: shirly
to: company@companysubmitter.com
date: Oct 31, 2007 1:02 AM
subject: notice protect-- internet brand intellectual property safeguard

Dear Manager

We are Shenzhen century net technology CO.LTD,which is an organization authorised by Chinese goverment and an official agent of CNIIC professionally reponsible for oversea domain name registration and dispute service.

On, 30th Oct, our company receive one company's application that they want to register the "companysubmitter.com" as their Internet Brand and CN domain name,but after our confirmation, we found this name will conflict with your company's name. According to the regulation and procedure of CNIIC, it's our duty to send this email to note you about it. Because you are the owner of this trademark, you have the preferential right to register and protect by yourself! Of course,if you have no any disagreement on this matter or you give it up, any individuals or organization have the right to register, which is legal. So we will register for any applicant. If you oppose other company to register your trademark and want to protect your knowledge property right, please contact me at early time.

Looking forward to your reply.

Have a nice day!

Best regards,

Shirly Huang

Shenzhen century net technology co,ltd.
MSN: Shirly-hlj626@hotmail.com
Tel: (86)75528581848
Fax: (86)75528581848
Web: www.soofa.org.cn

In further research into this, I found an article written by a Shelston IP Law Firm in Australia with the following article in Mondaq:

Australia: Shanghai'd Domain Names.

Article by Chris Bevitt and Michael Deacon

Registering a Chinese domain name can be an important step for any company wishing to establish a foothold in the Chinese market. Companies considering Chinese domain name registration need to be aware of Chinese registration and administration practices to ensure that their domain name is properly registered and receives protection.

The China Internet Network Information Centre (CNNIC) administers Chinese domain names with ".cn", ".org.cn" and ".net.cn" suffixes. Part of CNNIC’s role is to oversee domain name registration services through appointing authorised domain name registrars. Domain name applicants deal directly with these appointed registrars who determine the availability of the proposed domain name and process the registration application for a fee.

Recently, some Chinese domain name registrars have been approaching Australian companies to solicit domain name applications under seemingly false pretenses. Their practice is to contact a company, advise that an application has been received for a Chinese domain name incorporating the Australian company’s name or trade mark and request the company to contact them to discuss the issue. The registrars attempt to convince the Australian company to register a Chinese domain name to prevent it from being registered by a third party.

These Chinese domain name registrars are authorised by CNNIC. However, their practices are questionable given that it appears that no third party applications are actually being made (or if they are being made, the applicant is most likely a company somehow associated with the registrar). The Chinese registrars involved are monitoring trade mark applications lodged in China and targeting Australian applicants on the basis that their trade mark applications indicate an interest in China, making them a more likely target.

Any company with an interest in China should consider registering a Chinese domain name. This is particularly the case where third party registrations have the potential to significantly erode the company’s rights or ability to do business in China. However, companies contacted directly by Chinese domain name registrars should remain mindful that all might not be as it seems. There is no obligation to deal with a particular registrar and, in most circumstances, it is best not to encourage registrars engaging in direct solicitation by offering a reply. A variety of authorised Chinese registrars are available online and a company interested in registering a domain name in China should use the registrar of their choice. Seeking professional assistance with the application may also be an appropriate option, particularly if the circumstances are suspicious.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

Shelston IP

Shelston IP is an intellectual property ("IP") legal firm practicing in Australia and New Zealand jurisdictions. Their attorneys specialize in patents, trade mark law, and IP law dealing with protection, management, commercialization, and enforcement of IP, locally and internationally.

More research into the context of Domain Name Registration and Dispute Resolution Policies in China was found with the following policy article. It's interesting to note that any disputes brought forth to the China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC) must be brought forth in the Chinese language. See below.

The following is from the China Internet Network Information Center, cnnic.cn

China Internet Network Information Center

CNNIC Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy

Article 6 The language of the domain name dispute resolution proceedings shall be Chinese, unless otherwise agreed by the parties or determined by the Panel.

Article 7 the Complainant and the Respondent shall bear the burden of proof for their own claims.

Article 8
Support of a Complaint against a registered domain name is subject to the following conditions:
  1. The disputed domain name is identical with or confusingly similar to the Complainant's name or mark in which the Complainant has civil rights or interests;
  2. The disputed domain name holder has no right or legitimate interest in respect of the domain name or major part of the domain name;
  3. The disputed domain name holder has registered or has been using the domain name in bad faith.
Article 9 Any of the following circumstances may be the evidence of the registration and use of a domain name in bad faith:
  1. The purpose for registering or acquiring the domain name is to sell, rent or otherwise transfer the domain name registration to the complainant who is the owner of the name or mark or to a competitor of that complainant, and to obtain unjustified benefits;
  2. The disputed domain name holder, on many occasions, registers domain names in order to prevent owners of the names or marks from reflecting the names or the marks in corresponding domain names;
  3. The disputed domain name holder has registered or acquired the domain name for the purpose of damaging the Complainant's reputation, disrupting the Complainant's normal business or creating confusion with the Complainant’s name or mark so as to mislead the public;
  4. Other circumstances which may prove the bad faith.
Article 10 Before receiving the complaint, any of the following circumstances may be evidence of the rights to and legitimate interests in the domain name:
  1. Your use of the domain name or a name corresponding to the domain name in connection with a bona fide offering of goods or services;
  2. You have been commonly known by the domain name, even if you have acquired no trademark or service mark rights;
  3. You are making a legitimate noncommercial or fair use of the domain name, without intent of or commercial gain to misleadingly divert consumers.

The Internet is filled with land mines. Be careful, there are many firms, and countries in the world that do not have the same value systems as those in the western world. If you happen to get an email with similar sounding verbiage, don't completely ignore the threat but be ever vigilant. Check your name on the search engines. Do a Google Search for your name online. Protect your brand online. If you really want the China Domain Name, Godaddy, along with a multitude of other registrars can register the domain name for you.

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Anonymous said…
This is covered here as well:

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