How to take down your enemy's website
August 16, 2020
Someone has got something on their website which belongs to you. It could be a photograph, an article or all or part of your own website. You ask them to remove the offending item and they either refuse to do so or ignore you.
In a perfect world, you would launch a cyberattack, or stab them with a poisoned umbrella tip. Less satisfying but just as effective, would be to have the host of the offending website switch it off until the offending items were removed by the website owner.
Here is a three-step plan to achieve this:
- Ask your IT person to find and identify the hosts of the offending site. If you try to do this yourself, you will be awash with terms: some vaguely familiar, such as domain name and internet service provider (ISP), and others that are way out, such as WHOIS, carriage service provider, registrar and registrant.
- Send the host a Take Down Notice. This is a request which identifies the infringing content and requests that it be removed. It is the duty of the host to take down the website expeditiously (loosely defined as 48 hours) after receiving a Take Down Notice, or they can become liable themselves for the copyright infringement.
- Send a copy of the Take Down Notice to the offending site. This may take the fun out of the Take Down Notice procedure but it may cause the site owner to decide to remove the infringing item rather than risk the site being taken down unexpectedly.
If you doubt that the host can unexpectedly take down a website, just think about the last time your own website disappeared for a day or more.
(c) Paul Brennan 2018. All rights reseved.