If you have a business that goes great on the web, you need to protect your brand identity from scammer’s attacks. The enemies are called fake accounts, identity theft, spam, cybersquatting and haters, but don’t worry: to defend yourself, it is enough to know the right moves. Read what to do in case of damage to your brand perpetrated on the internet.
The best activities are attacked by online scammers. Find out why
You managed to create the e-commerce of your dreams, manage a travel website successfully, the work of influencer is taking off. Here, suddenly, strange things happen on your social pages and on your site:
- Bad reviews in bursts
- Unwanted advertising
- Installed apps that you can’t remember downloading on your smartphone
- Annoying pop-ups while you browse.
Even the dialogue with customers is confusing and messy as if pieces were missing. The bad news is that you’re under attack from a hacker, who stole your company’s identity. Why did he do this? Simple, those who steal a social account or a web domain need to hide behind another identity, to commit illegal things. For example:
- Steal your customers
- Stealing information for marketing purposes
- Advertise a flirt activity, to extort money and identification documents from strangers.
These operations are profitable, considering that 62% of internet users, before trusting a company, consult the web, checking their Facebook profile or their site. To have a good reputation, scammers need a reassuring presence and lots of followers, in short, they must arm themselves behind convincing feedback. Logical that the most convenient thing is to steal one that works.
Brand protection has become even legal matters thanks to famous cases, such as cybersquatting against the Touring Club. Back in 2000, became the owner of the “touring” site but for the judge, the word “Touring” in the eyes of the users already identified and the associated commercial activities. The historic brand has been providing tourist information and services for almost a century, achieving great success and much popularity. The law, therefore, condemned for having used the name as a mirror for larks, deceiving consumers of the same catchment area on the web. Fortunately, in a well-organized TV production companies in Dubai, the social profiles and the website is cared for and followed by a team of professionals, consisting of a graphic designer, a video maker, a copywriter and above all an excellent social media manager: it is up to him to protect the online Brand identity. Here are the right moves to tackle this task.
What makes those who deal with Brand identity security and what are the most frequent problems to solve
Facebook account theft and cybersquatting: two problems you didn’t think of when you started your business. It is good to begin to prevent them. First of all, hire a freelance social media manager to help you. Here is what trouble you can avoid and how.
1) War on the fake profiles that steal the Brand identity
If the brand has a page, a community or a Facebook business profile that goes great, the worst threat is fake profiles. They sneak in order to put like pages that you never dream of approving, for advertising purposes. Enter false negative reviews, talk to customers for you, take the info of your followers, or post false job offers. In short, they replicate your company profile for their interests. To combat fake profiles, the social media manager periodically checks the Activity Log, constantly reviews the reviews, cancels the Spam immediately, reports them to Facebook, allows the publication of external posts only upon approval. Above all, carefully evaluate each account: if they have an absurd name, they are very recent, they have few friends and few interactions, and they are probably fake.
The most overwhelming proof of the theft of a Brand identity on Facebook is the use of images: first, in fact, thieves steal photos and videos of the original account, to better fool customers by creating a clone. This becomes even easier with Instagram. Unfortunately, it is not said that the author of the cloning is always a follower, it could be a stranger difficult to identify, especially if he uses a wi-fi network of other people. At this point there are two actions that the social media manager can implement:
- Report the identity theft to Facebook by writing to firstname.lastname@example.org. Eye however: it must also provide evidence of real damage. This is useful for screenshots showing purchase negotiations, requests for info or reviews, which did not occur with the original company. Facebook checks starting from the data provided during registration, and sends an identification code to the original mobile phone number. Once the investigation is completed, the clone is deleted.
- Report the theft to the Postal Police, recommended action if Facebook does not immediately run for cover and the damage is large. In this case there is a lawsuit: in addition to the screenshots we need more evidence, provided following the international Best Practices of the Budapest Convention.
2) Fight against cybersquatting that threatens a Brand
If instead the problem that has struck the Brand identity is Cybersquatting, it is necessary, first of all, to understand what type it is. Here are the most common probabilities.
- The theft of the domain of the company site for the purpose of blackmail is the most frequent case. A lot of trouble if you don’t have money to pay the hacker
- In Typo squatting / Punycode, on the other hand, a domain similar to that of the original brand is registered, to phishing customers or downloading malware on their computers
- The Brand can be the victim of a Gripe site, created to discredit it or to replace it at the customers
- If it is associated with a famous name, for example a well-known Influencer, the original website can be the object of Name jacking. The clone site uses the name as a domain, capturing browsers from the web and taking their data for phishing
- Theft of expired and non-renewed domains: being “free” from control, they can be stolen and used to clone the identity of the former owner.
In any case, the first steps that the social media manager must make since the foundation of the online activity are two:
- Register the company trademark with the Patent Office
- Renew the domain of the website upon expiration.
For this reason in the company team a freelance is needed who personally follows the registration and continuously updates the online assets of the activity, perhaps using automatic renewal and deleting the old info on the site. In short, the domain of the site must be protected to the maximum: for example, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers offers a domain registration service with multiple types of extensions, as well as being based on the name, thus providing security 2.0. The number of combinations between the two factors being very high, in fact, theft of online brand identity is better controlled.
Now that you know it, run for cover to protect the brand
If you have a Brand that you care about, which could already be the subject of interest from a fake profile or an unscrupulous hacker, we advise you not to waste time.