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The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) has published a report about examples of illicit business models online, finding that the line between IP-infringing and traditional cybercriminal activities is becoming blurred.
The report, called “Research on online business models infringing intellectual property rights”, was commissioned by professional services firm Deloitte Spain and the European Observatory, a network for sharing best practices for dealing with infringement.
The aim of the study is to provide enhanced understanding for policy makers, civil society and private businesses, while helping to identify and understand how to tackle large-scale online IP infringements.
It is based on material collected on 25 business models, and an analytical method was developed to help identify, dissect and analyse current IP-infringing business models online.
The report found that five business models were found to have misused IP by using cybersquatting and domain name parking models.
Five other business models were found to be sharing content on the internet by linking, streaming and cyberlocking.
Further, deceptive business models were found on websites that were constructed to give the consumer the impression that there is a connection with a legitimate brand.
The report concluded that “it can be observed that the borderline between IPR-infringing activities and traditional cybercriminal activities is becoming blurred”.
This is due to phishing emails containing ransomware and spoofing websites used to gain access to passwords to bank accounts or credit card details.
The full report can be viewed here.
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