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Cyber Law
A glance on relation between Intellectual property and Cyber law

Cyber law is relatively very new concept in India. Cyber activities are covered under Information Technology Act, 2000 in India but Information Technology Act, 2000 itself does not cover every issued related to cyber law. Cyber law affects many various fields of law but here we will have a glance on how intellectual property is affected through internet.

Within last 10 year growth of internet has been unbelievable; this immense growth has raised many legal issues. One big change which can be noticed with growth of internet is more and more curiosity about intellectual property. Intellectual property and internet are inter-related to each other

On internet we often find unauthorized use of anotherís words, trademark/service mark, images, music, articles and much more. Such unauthorized use is violation of rights acquired under intellectual property law by the original party. Some of them violate rights acquired under intellectual property by directly copying word to word without making any change, where some of them make nominal changes in the original work but in both the circumstances violation is violation.

The protection of Intellectual Property on Internet still remains a grey area in India with information technology Act, 2000. More and more entity is nowadays concentrating to promote their business through Internet. Prior to internet radio, television and telemarketing were sources for marketing and promoting products and company. Today internet is the most recognized and popular way to promote and market products and company. In such circumstances they need a domain name to identify the source they are using. Very first hurdle any individual can face is registration of domain name. Name of his company or well known trademark may already be existing as a domain name. List of hurdles is long enough to frustrate him.

Cyber squatting is one of the most usual way to infringe trademark. Cyber squatting means registering domain name in the name of well known and/or registered trademark of other entity and then trying to sell that domain name to the owner of well known and/or registered trademark or to third party. Such offer to sell a domain name to the owner of an identical or similar trademark is a trademark infringement. In India court ruled in favour of trademark rights of Yahoo Inc, against a local company in India, which had registered Yahooindia.com. It was observed by the court that Yahoo India was an intentional effort to trade on fame of trademark Yahoo.

A form of dilution of famous trademark can occur through blurring, in which famous or well known trademark of an entity is used by another to blur the source of origin of the mark. Dilution of famous / well known trade mark can also occur by using famous / well known trade mark of any entity by other entity for purpose of degrading. For example, using well known and famous trademark of house hold product for any adult or pornographic site.

Hyper linking, electronic pointers and Meta tagging are also one of the sources that are used to gain illegal benefit through internet. Use of trademark of other entity as meta tag can confuse search engines and can divert traffic to the person falsely using trademark as a meta tag. Thus use of anotherís trade mark as a hidden code word on meta tag is also infringement of well known trademark.

Piracy of copyright work is another biggest issue involved in Cyber law. Piracy of music and movies is very common, piracy of software is a bit difficult than piracy of music and movies but piracy of software is now a day been biggest headache for software developers. Unauthorized downloading is also one form of infringing of copyright. Framing is relatively a new concept of piracy wherein through certain HTML codes; a link is established to another site and then displays that site within a window or a frame.