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Going forward, foreign web-based businesses should bear in mind that website hits from UK based visitors will not be evidence of UK customers. The application was on the basis that the Trade Mark constituted an infringement of the claimant's common law rights in passing off.
However, for a foreign business to generate goodwill in the UK by using a name, mark or sign, it must provide services in respect of that name, mark or sign to customers in the UK. The tort of passing off enables a trader to protect the goodwill they have generated in their business and their trade mark from unfair competition in the form of use by a third party of a sign which would have the effect of "passing off" the third party's goods or services as those of the trader. Miah Ramanathan reports the verdict.
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