It should soon be easier for you to stop counterfeit trademarks with blockchain. The Australian Trade Marks Office (IP Australia) is developing blockchain technology to help.
This Is Great News For Australian Trade Mark Owners
Apparently, more than 3% of world trade is in counterfeit goods. Now, trade marks are relatively inexpensive. But enforcing international infringements can be expensive and a lot of work. Using blockchain technology could help you stop counterfeit trademarks before they even get started.
Your present and future customers will easily recognise authentic brands. Of course, they’re more willing to buy your brand from legitimate sources. This will cut out counterfeiters, scammers and unauthorised resellers.
Blockchain trademark protection will help in other ways, too.
For example, we’re all familiar with goods like Australian baby powder being bought here and resold in China. But the overseas buyers can’t be certain the goods were handled safely. Did the seller warehouse them correctly in transit? Or have they spent the last year in someone’s garage? Soon, buyers will be able to use an app like WeChat to check the goods’ provenance. The app shows where they were made. When they were made. When they were exported. And wheter there are any warning signals about where the goods travelled along the way.
It’s a potential game changer for legitimate brands. Especially in today’s increasingly competitive international / online markets.
But, before you can take advantage of this new concept. . . .
Will I Need To Register A Trademark In Australia?
Yes. You must have a registered trademark in the first place. Naturally, we’re happy to help you register a trademark in Australia.
The Blockchain / Smart Trademark Concept
The Australian Trade Marks Office has been working on this for a few years now. They’re designing what they call a ‘Smart Trade Mark’.
The idea is to enable you to digitally authenticate your products or services, your supplier chains, and the various places you’re selling from.
It will work by letting trade mark owners digitally link these things to the official Australian government register.
That will prove the goods are authentic and have been handled properly.
How Will You Use Blockchain Trademark Protection?
First, you’ll create a Smart Trade Mark. That means logging on to the government site and submitting a product reference or domain address.
Second, those details will be secured, stored and linked to your registered trademark on the government’s official register. That’s how they will authenticate you (as the owner) and your trade mark (for customers).
Third, a ‘Trust Badge‘ is created as an easy way to verify your brand online. The Trust Badge is visual proof of an authentic trade mark. Also, it will allow people to follow the digital trail and authenticate your products. That increases the trust in your brand — and should improve sales and customer retention
You’ll be able to create as many trust badges as necessary.
The Blockchain Backend
The blockchain trial uses an organisation’s trademark as the starting point.
The goverhment digitises your trademark. That makes it compatible with blockchain usage. When you create or export a product, you enter its details onto a blockchain. It is digitally linked to your Australian trademark.
The government’s system them uses blockchain technology and APIs to connect information about the trade mark. That includes who the owner is, and where the mark has been used digitally. This enables the you to control the use of your mark. End users can check the origian of any product using your mark, too.
The Trade Marks Office is currently testing the Trust Badge with a select group of industry partners.
However, it is definitely not too early to register a trademark.
Please contact us if you are interested in learning more, or if the time is right for you to take the first step and register your trademark in Australia.