London
10 April 2017
Reporter: Barney Dixon

PIPCU and IACC respond to RogueBlock allegations


The City of London Police Intellectual Property Unit (PIPCU) and the International AntiCounterfeiting Coalition (IACC) have responded to criticism that its new partnership could lead to “enforcement abuse”.

PIPCU and the IACC announced the partnership, which will see the police unit use the coalition’s RogueBlock programme to take down websites selling counterfeits, last week (6 April).

The collaboration is aimed at expanding RogueBlock’s impact as part of PIPCU’s Operation Ashiko, which focuses on websites aimed at UK consumers on .uk domains.

But the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) argued that the programme “substantially increases the potential for enforcement overreach and abuse”.

“The websites flagged by RogueBlock are based on private reporting by trademark, patent, and copyright holders,” the EFF said in a blog post.

A PIPCU spokesperson responded by saying that the unit “independently assesses and investigates all reports concerning websites that are alleged to be selling counterfeit goods and this will include reference to evidence provided by trademark holders”.

“When a website is suspended as a result of Operation Ashiko, the registrant is provided with a point of contact within PIPCU so that representations can be made and the circumstances reviewed.”

Similarly, in a statement, the IACC said that it works with brands, credit card companies and government officials to “ensure that the provider of these submissions owns the rights to the mark, the submitted claims are legitimate, that any remedial actions taken are appropriate in light of the specific circumstances, and that there are controls in place to permit the operator of a site to respond to an asserted violation”.

“Since the programme's launch in 2012, RogueBlock has been heralded as a success across all industries and sectors, and we look forward to expanding and strengthening the programme.”

More trademarks news
The latest news from IPPro The Internet
Join Our Newsletter

Sign up today and never
miss the latest news or an issue again

Subscribe now
Unitary trademark should be pursued in the EU
20 September 2017 | Prague | Reporter: Theo Andrew
A unitary trademark, similar to proposals for a unitary patent, should be pursued in the EU, according to Gregor Vos, partner at Brinkhof
Kroger and Lidl drop home brands lawsuit
13 September 2017 | Virginia | Reporter: Barney Dixon
Supermarket rivals Lidl and Kroger have agreed to dismiss a trademark infringement lawsuit over home brand logos
Kodi hit by trademark trolls
12 September 2017 | London | Reporter: Barney Dixon
Kodi, the company behind the open source IPTV box software of the same name, has been hit by a multitude of so-called ‘trademark trolls’
BBC Worldwide partners with Incopro
11 September 2017 | London | Reporter: Barney Dixon
BBC Worldwide has partnered with brand protection specialist Incopro to tackle the unlicensed online sale of counterfeit merchandise
Facebook a counterfeiter’s haven, finds IPO
07 September 2017 | London | Reporter: Barney Dixon
Counterfeiters see social media as a haven, with Facebook representing the most exposed location for communication about counterfeit goods, according to the UK Intellectual Property Office
Google trademark dispute could go to SCOTUS
30 August 2017 | San Diego | Reporter: Barney Dixon
Two members of the public have asked the US Supreme Court to rule on whether ‘Google’ is a generic term that should not be the subject of a trademark
Prolific counterfeiter sentenced to three years
22 August 2017 | New Jersey | Reporter: Barney Dixon
A prolific counterfeiter who smuggled fake iPhones, iPads and iPods from China to sell in the US has been sentenced to more than three years in prison