Donald Trump, President-elect of the United States, nominated Rex Tillerson as his Secretary of State on the 13th of December 2016. During the following days, at least 4 domain names consisting of variants of the latter’s name were registered. Said registrations were done through the Proxy Service of a brand-protection registrar, presumably by the newly nominated Secretary of State’s representatives. Those domain names are rextilllerson.com, rextilerson.com, rexwtillerson.org and rexwtillerson.net (the full patronym of the person concerned being Rex Wayne Tillerson).
However the domain names rextillerson.com and rextillerson.net (inter alia) had already been registered between the 10th and the 11th of December 2016 by the company NameInvest Inc., a company involved in at least one UDRP complaint as a Respondent in the past (decision available here ). Moreover, it may be observed that the domain name rextillerson.com appears to have been recovered automatically by NameInvest Inc. after it expired with its previous registrar. This missed opportunity could have allowed the Secretary of State representatives to secure the domain name concerned.
This case is another illustration of the need to anticipate the securing of strategic domain names corresponding notably to : - a new trademark ; - a new product or service ; - the patronym of a person likely to become the object of significant media attention.
The IP Twins team is, of course, at your disposal to provide advice and guidance in these matters.