It is sometimes necessary to directly contact a person or business in the course of an investigation. But the regulations and ethics about pretext are often misunderstood, and some conflict. To help sort out the issues surrounding pretext contact, we offer the following two excellent resources from the International Trademark Association.
It was once relatively easy to discover the owner/registrant of a domain. But privacy regulations have grown more stringent over the years, often making discovery extremely challenging. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is pushing privacy to the forefront. Searching WHOIS may become obsolete. A good overview of GDPR and WHOIS privacy can be seen here.
It is now necessary for foreign-domiciled trademark applicants, registrants and parties to Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) proceedings be represented by a U.S.-licensed attorney. This rule became effective August 3, 2019. According to the USTPO, the new rules will increase compliance with U.S. trademark law, improve the accuracy of trademark submissions, and safeguard the integrity of the trademark register. Learn more about the new regulations here.