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Beware of Unauthorized Changes to USPTO Trademark Filings

Fraudsters are branching out.

Instead of merely sending out fake invoices to unsuspecting trademark owners — a scourge in its own right — some are fraudulently changing owner information with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

I recently noticed this with one of my client’s filings. Helpfully, the USPTO immediately changed the information back. It also told me:

“[U]nauthorized changes have been made to a number of active trademark applications and registrations. These changes may be part of a scheme to register the marks of others on third-party [fraudulent] ‘brand registries.’” 

The USPTO provides more information about this disturbing development here.

This is good reason to check your filings, or have your attorney do so. Even better — make sure your attorney has software that that alerts him or her to any changes that occur in your trademark filings. That will enable your lawyer to nip any unauthorized changes in the bud.

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