How to use the DMCA to protect your online business

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To understand how the DMCA can help protect your business, you first need to understand what it means. The DMCA stands for Digital Millennium Copyright Act. It is a law that was passed in 1998 to protect content creators in the digital space. You can learn more about it at With that background in mind, let’s look at how you can use the DMCA to protect your online business. 

  1. You can use it to protect your business against piracy  

In today’s highly interconnected world, technology theft is a reality. This can cripple a business, especially if it is not well capitalized to deal with such issues. The DMCA has clauses that are aimed at protecting your business from this problem. In specifics, title 1 of the DMCA can protect your business from unscrupulous business people looking to steal your technology. If you run an online business that relies on patented technology, this title protects you by making it illegal for someone to reverse engineer your technology, and profit from it. 

  1. It protects your business crippling litigation when running Apps/Websites

Apps and websites have over the years become a major creator of wealth for entrepreneurs. Unfortunately, when running them you are constantly dealing with data, some of which you may not know its origins. As a consequence, you could be exposed to costly litigation from data owners, a factor that could negatively affect your business. The DMCA considers this and, in title 2 of the act, there is something called the safe harbour. This simply means that, as a web or app owner, you are not liable for content that third parties upload on your site. If such content infringes on copyrights, the content owner can only go after the uploader and not the site/app owner. This is the freedom that can help you grow your business with confidence. 

  1. It protects you from being sued by manufacturers

The DMCA takes care of all aspects of online business, including businesses that provide computer repair services. Without DMCA, this kind of business would simply not exist. That’s because manufacturers would have the right to sue you for tampering with their products. Title 3 of the DMCA gives explicit authority to repair businesses to make limited copies of computer code. This is a protection that allows businesses that specialize in the now popular on-call computer repair businesses to thrive. 

  1. It gives you a clear cut way to approach litigation 

Besides the explicit protections that come with the DMCA, this law also offers a clear pathway on what to do in case you are faced with copyright litigations. That’s because in title 2 the DMCA addresses how businesses should solve copyright issues that arise in the online environment. When you know what you are supposed to do in case of litigation, it becomes easier to settle issues out of court and quicker. This protects your business from delays that would easily stagnate it. When you have clearly defined dispute resolution mechanisms, it also becomes easier to avoid issues that would complicate your business.  


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