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September 2021 | Bulletin num.136 | Subscribe
NIPO: 088-17-040-8

Protection of Industrial Property Rights (IPR) in e-commerce

The restrictions on mobility that have occurred during the pandemic, and especially the strict confinement measures that took place during 2020 due to the crisis caused by Covid-19, have caused a considerable increase in the use of the data network, and, therefore, in purchases over the internet. The situation has clearly led to the rebound in electronic commerce (e-commerce) in Spain.

This issue was already discussed in our magazine in May: InfoPI May 2020: Online commerce sales soar in Spain due to the coronavirus. Basic rules to detect counterfeit products on the internet.

E-commerce continues to grow and plays an important role for many companies and business in the take-off and in adapting to new times.

However, what can you do if you discover a counterfeit of your product for sale in an e-commerce marketplace? Or what to do if someone is using your brand on an e-commerce list by taking advantage of your good reputation to mislead consumers?

Aware of these changes in consumer habits, the European Observatory on Infringements of Intellectual Property Rights has opened a new section within its website: the protection of industrial and intellectual property rights in electronic commerce markets. .

This new section contains IPR protection tools in e-commerce markets. Information is provided on what we should do if we discover that our brand or business is being compromised in an e-commerce market. To protect your business and your customers, the first step is to remove those posts.

In this new section, three main tools are at your disposal:

  1. A notification system: they allow owners to notify offers that could be infringing their industrial property (IP) rights. There are many different systems, such as web forms that guide you step-by-step through the notification process, or forms to be download. The precise information that is required may vary from one market system to another. However, the owner will normally be asked to provide information about his company, his IP rights (for example, the trademark registration number) and the publications that allegedly infringe his rights (for example, URL). Make sure you have all the information to file your notification.
  2. Industrial and intellectual property rights protection programs: applied by a limited number of markets to support cooperation with IP rights holders. Although they have different functions, they usually provide holders with a simplified process for them to notify any publication that allegedly violates their rights and a control panel to keep track of their notifications and the results. They can also offer tools that facilitate the search for publications that may violate the rights of the owners. It may be necessary to register before you can use these programs, as well as to provide detailed information about your company and your rights (for example, the registration number of the trademark).
  3. Contact point for assistance: allows users to obtain assistance if they have a problem related to the use of a notification system or the process for using an IP protection program. On the contrary, some markets do not have notification systems or forms, so any infringement of IP rights will have to be notified to the contact point by email, without a specific format.

More information


Contact the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office (SPTO)
902 157 530   910 780 780 información@oepm.es
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