Sunday, January 03, 2010

Who's Brand Is It Anyway?

So you think you own a brand and can control it in a global economy? Surely no one can pretend to be Pepsi, Wal-Mart, Apple, etc.?

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (Icann) will soon start to accept internet domain names in non-Roman scripts. The domain name is that element in web address that precedes the “dot” and often is the brand. These new internationalised domain names will not open up the internet to users whose native language does not use the Roman alphabet, but it will also open up the opportunity for many to pretend to be something they aren’t. So not only do you need to watch the obvious but you may now need to learn what the translation of your brand name is in ;Korean, Arabic, Chinese, Korean and Japanese scripts.

To a non Roman-reading eye, may find an e-mail link could lead to a clone site constructed by thieves. “Phishing”, may never be easier and what may have been difficult in Roman text is about to get a lot more difficult especially given some of the new scripts are based on images.

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