1. What is a domain name?

A domain name is the address you use online to find your website or your email account. For example, our website is ‘www.hflawyers.com.au’ and our domain name is ‘hflawyers.com.au’. The letters ‘au’ in the suffix ‘.com.au’ refers to Australia but is really the suffix given by the particular IT company that issues those domain names. Theoretically you can register “harrisfreidman.org.au” or “harrisfreidman.net.au” and they would be all be legitimate and separate domain names. This does not mean you could use a competitors name and just change the suffix of the domain name.

2. Should I get a domain name registered?

Yes, you should register your business name as a domain name to further protect your brand.

3. How do I register my domain name?

Many companies can assist you to register your domain name, and the costs vary depending on which company you decide to use and how long you register your domain name for.

4. Is a domain name the same as a trade mark?

No. Registering a domain name and having a website address does not give you ownership of the words used in that domain name. Therefore, other people (and your competitors) could theoretically register a similar domain name to yours. There are other legal protections to stop this behaviour. Ownership of the words in your domain name can only come through trade mark registration. If you register a trade mark you can prevent others from using your trade mark in their domain name.

Written by Scott Freidman
(02) 9231 2466

For more information on intellectual property strategies, please contact us on (02) 9231 2466.

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