Counterfeiters on eBay – What Can I Do?

The rise of online marketplaces and e-commerce has made it easy for anyone to set up an online store. While this ease of doing business has opened up a level of consumer choice and variety, it also makes it too easy for people to sell counterfeit or unauthorised products. This can result in both lost business and damaged reputations.

Major platforms such as eBay also know this and have implemented anti-infringement policies and procedures. To assist intellectual property owners in protecting their rights, eBay established the Verified Rights Owner (VeRO) Program as a tool for reporting any listings that infringe on intellectual property rights.

Today we will talk about the infringement enforcement system on eBay and how you can use it.

Participating in the VeRO Program

You can establish yourself as the owner of intellectual property by participating in the VeRO program. To do so, create an About Me page on your eBay seller account, which details information about your company and products and clearly states that they are your intellectual property and that you pursue violators.

After creating an About Me page, you can then contact eBay’s VeRO staff.  You simply have to inform them of your About Me page and request participation in the VeRO program.

After Infringement – Contacting the Infringer

Once you have noticed an infringement, the first step is to contact the infringer and inform them.

While this is an informal process, it is a good idea to remain polite and provide evidence that you are the genuine intellectual property owner and clearly, identify the infringing content.

Even if the infringer does not reciprocate, being able to demonstrate that you have notified and requested them to take down the content will generally support your case.

Lodging a VeRO Claim

If attempts to get the infringing content removed have not been successful, the next step is to report the infringement or violation to eBay. To do this, you will need to download and complete a Notice of Claimed Infringement (NOCI) form.

This form can be filled out online and submitted through the DocuSign service. You can also print out the form and email or fax the signed copy to eBay

Once the initial report has been processed, eBay will review it, and if needed, request any additional information or reports as necessary.

Monitoring

At the end of the day, it is up the intellectual property rights owners to monitor, protect and enforce their own IP.

On eBay, there are two main methods to monitoring for intellectual property infringement. Firstly, you can manually search eBay for potential infringements. Naturally, this would be time-consuming, so eBay also provides the option to create a set of pre-saved searches that will be emailed to you/

This may seem like a lot of work, especially as your brand and business grow, but the truth is that protecting your intellectual property and trademarks can be a burden.

Working with a professional intellectual property firm can help you monitor your network and report infringement violations.

Contact our IP Consultants if you would like us to help you develop a tailored intellectual property strategy.