Could a trademark protect your business on social media?

While social media can be hugely beneficial for many businesses, it is not without its problems. Organisations have had to adapt to deal with unfavourable reviews, account hacking, data protection breaches, fake accounts and even liability for unlawful acts by employees.

The law has struggled to keep up with the meteoric rise of social media. As such, there is no ‘social media law’ you can call on to address these issues. Instead, a mix of long-established legal principles and new laws are used in a bid to address the ever-changing issues presented by social media. As things stand, one of the quickest and most effective ways to protect your business on social media is by reliance on a registered trade mark.

Impersonation and fake online accounts

One of the biggest problems online is the ease with which an identity can be hidden, copied or faked. This might just be because a business happens to have the same name, but disgruntled clients or campaigners can take advantage of this to set up spoof accounts, and social media provides cybercriminals with convenient platforms on which to execute their latest scam.

How can a registered trademark resolve these problems?

A trademark is infringed if a third party uses the mark, or something similar, without permission in the course of trade. If your brand name is protected by a trademark, any unauthorised use in the course of trade on social media impersonator accounts and in hashtags or the like can constitute trade mark infringement.    

 

How we can help

A registered trademark is a crucial element of an effective brand development and protection strategy. Trademark registration provides a cost effective, straightforward way to protect your brand on social media.  Our solicitors have vast experience working with clients to develop strategies that provide optimum online and offline protection.

 

For further information, please contact Anna Horrell in the corporate and commercial team on 01604 622101 or [email protected] Borneo Martell Turner Coulston have offices in Northampton and Kettering.

 

This article is for general information only and does not constitute legal or professional advice. Please note that the law may have changed since this article was published.

 

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