News & insights

Online Anti-Counterfeiting Measures in Turkey

July 1, 2021

Located at the crossroads of Asia and Europe, Turkey occupies a transcontinental position of significant importance, which bestows upon the country a considerable influence across the region and beyond. Turkey’s strategic geographic position makes it an important energy and logistics corridor, linking Europe with the Middle East, the Caucasus, and Central Asia.

With the rise of ecommerce sites, many infringers and counterfeiters are resorting to online platforms to pawn their illicit goods to unsuspecting consumers. Nonetheless, this does not mean that such criminals are beyond the long arm of the Law in Turkey. Court actions are available as a remedy for online infringement if the brand owner can associate the infringer with a local entity or individual in Turkey.

In fact, Turkey maintains strict control when it comes to registering domain names under the “.tr” country code. The Information Technologies Authority, which acts as the competent registrar, applies strict rules and requires precise and detailed documentation for proof of genuine rights ownership before granting the designation. This process makes it extremely challenging and near impossible for infringers to register fraudulent domain names under the “.tr” country code.

In addition, it is worth noting that an internet service provider in Turkey may be held accountable for aiding an infringer, or is unaware of the ongoing infringement activities and is able to block or suspend the infringing website. As aforementioned in the section titled “Laying down the Law,” Turkey maintains Law No. 5651 in order to set down the guiding principles as related to the liability of content, hosting, and internet service providers. The Law also applies to acts of online counterfeiting and piracy.

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