WIPO says that its Arbitration and Mediation Center received 2,764 UDRP cases covering 4,781 domain names last year, up 2.5% on 2010.
In 2011 the top five areas of WIPO complainant activity were retail; internet and IT; biotechnology and pharmaceuticals; fashion; and banking and finance.
Of the gTLD cases filed with WIPO in 2011, more than three-quarters related to .com registrations. Applying UDRP jurisprudence, panels in 2011 found evidence of cybersquatting in 88% of all cases.
At the end of last year, the WIPO Center received the first UDRP case concerning a domain name in the new .xxx domain.
Francis Gurry, WIPO’s director-general, said that the trends mean that brand owners already have to make difficult choices for their stretched online enforcement resources.
“With the domain name coordinating body, ICANN, allowing for a massive increase in the number of new domains, brand owners’ resources will likely be stretched further,” he added.
WIPO has proposed that ICANN introduce so-called pre- and post-delegation procedures for new gTLD registries. It expects that the first pre-delegation cases could be filed by trade mark owners against domain applicants within the next few months. The WIPO Center is making available party resources for this new procedure.