If you don’t prevent cybersquatting, it may give unnecessary sleepless nights. How do you feel when you discover that some people have registered your domain name’s variations and other extensions so that they could sell them back to you at huge prices or wrongly benefit from the popularity of your website? That exactly what cybersquatting is all about and there are ways of preventing it including getting free domain names.
One of the ways of preventing cybersquatting is to get a registered trademark before registering your domain name. This will hinder anybody from registering it or any of its other extensions before and after you register the name. Registrars do not have the legal right to register a trademarked name except it is being done by the trademark owner.
Furthermore, you should ensure that the record of the domain ownership is properly entered. The record must carry your name or that of your company and not that of one of your employees who has probably carried out the registration on your behalf. If you mistakenly put the name of one of your employees in the domain ownership record, when he or she leaves, the domain goes with him or her.
Besides, you should not let your domain expire before renewing it. You may be wondering how this is related to cybersquatting. If you allow your domain to expire and you don’t renew it within the period of grace given to you, your registrar may sell it and I’m very sure that cybersquatters will be the first to show interest in buying it. You can imagine losing a well-ranked website in this manner! Consequently, you should renew your domain in advance and you can even pay for many years in advance.
Also, you can fight back through arbitration making use of a very good attorney and it is interesting to note that the Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA) has provisions for dealing with this type of case. On the other hand, if you want a cheaper alternative, you can go through the Uniform Dispute Resolution Process (UDRP) which is administered by ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers). The only disadvantage of UDRP is that it takes time because it does not require an attorney.
Above all, you should register variations and several extensions of your domain name. Apart from the .com extension, you should not forget to register other extensions like .biz, .net, .org, .info, etc, in order to defeat cybersquatters. You can get free domain names from dependable web hosting companies so that you will be able to reduce your expenses on registration of multiple names.