Brand Abuse as a Malicious Activity of Gaining Profit
A brand is a symbol, name, design that identifies a specific product or service. It is the identity of itself. Good branding skills is required to put up a trusted and reputable brand in the market. Costumers and consumers will recognize a symbol or design without its name because of the impact of good branding techniques. They make millions of sales by its brand alone. It takes years to develop a strong foundation for a good brand. Besides the equipment, customers and stocks, the brand is also an asset of the organization. And because a good brand is one asset of the company, this is also one which has greater risk for abuse or impersonation.
What is a Brand Abuse?
Brand abuse refers to different kinds of malicious and illegal activities that aim to exploit an existing brand. Main reasons for these acts is to damage the brand’s reputation or to gain monetary benefit from it. There are different kinds of brand abuse that are existing and operating now in the use of malwares and other viruses that installed in the system without consent. Some includes brand impersonation and unauthorized claiming of brand partnerships.
Different kinds of Brand Abuse
Counterfeiting is a kind of brand abuse that uses or sells fake physical products and claiming that they are representatives from a trusted brand. Online counterfeiting is the most common type of it. Costumers didn’t see the actual product and cannot personally check it because it is sale through online.
Another one is through brand jacking. Brand jacking is a fraudulent activity where the perpetrator claims that he is affiliated with a certain brand. He appears to be associated with it and uses even the logo of the brand to sell goods or services. Worst case is when the perpetrator use phishing style of activities to gain something from the brand.
Cybersquatting brand abuse is mostly done by cybercriminal experts. It is an illegal practice of registering, using or selling domain names that have association or connection with the brand to gain profit. It is also called as domain squatting. The perpetrator registers himself as an owner of a well-known trademark to do fraudulent activities.
Grey market selling is the way of selling authentic products through manufacturers’ unauthorized channels. It is also called as parallel market selling. Goods are often sold through online stores without charged sales taxes from its customers. Grey market websites practices these and goods are obtained by refurbishing damaged products and sometimes through theft and discount fraud activities.