Brands are some of the most curious life forms on the planet. Highly dependent on the illusive nutrient that is consumer trust, brands can take years to develop and grow—but can be destroyed in moments if not carefully protected on and offline.
Today, brand abuse is costing businesses billions of dollars in lost business and an unmeasurable hit to consumers’ digital trust in online interactions with brands. With only 44 percent of users considering a branded email as safe to click on, brands must take action to protect their digital assets, IP, trademarks, and users from brand abuse with the right brand protection software and tools.
In this post, we’ll explore brand protection software and its features and survey eight of the best solutions available.
What is Brand Protection Software, and why is it important?
Brand protection software solutions are a broad category of products, defined by Gartner as “software that guards against suspicious listings and brand abuse networks that infringe on your intellectual property, sell counterfeit products, and commit other online scams against your brand.”
The software category includes tools and technologies designed to help organizations protect their digital brand identity, intellectual property (IP), and digital assets from infringement, counterfeiting, unauthorized use, and other brand abuse threats.
The primary goal of brand protection software is to enable organizations to take action to prevent monetary losses, damage to the brand’s value, and erosion of digital trust that stem from brand abuse.
The solutions offer various features to monitor, detect and mitigate brand abuse across relevant channels, including online marketplaces like Amazon, social media platforms, public websites, ad networks, search engine results, and even the Dark Web.
Generally, any digital brand with a large enough client base to merit scamming should employ brand protection software. Since the category includes a wide variety of solutions, you should first define the features and functions that address the specific types of brand abuse threatening your bottom line before you purchase a brand protection software solution.
Features of Brand Protection Software
Web & Social Media Monitoring Tools
These solutions continuously monitor relevant online feeds, channels, and resources to detect brand abuse. Web monitoring tools help detect brand impersonation and misuse, and empower businesses to gauge audience sentiment better, respond to customer inquiries, and more. This category also includes paid search monitoring and Dark Web monitoring.
Domain Registration Monitoring & Takedown
To identify potential cases of cybersquatting, phishing, or counterfeit brand shops, these services scan domain registrations and enable businesses to enforce domain name rights to protect their brand from impersonation. They also help companies to detect malicious clones of their websites hosted on newly registered domains that resemble the genuine brand’s website domain. Some services also offer takedown process management.
Product Counterfeiting Detection
Fake products cost a brand in sales and damage the brand’s reputation when the counterfeit product fails to perform like the genuine one. This is why luxury brands, high-end designers, and artist agencies employ AL/ML-based image recognition tools to detect the presence of counterfeit products on ecommerce sites. These engines also analyze product listings, seller profiles, supply chain anomalies, and other relevant data to pinpoint counterfeit products.
Digital Rights Management (DRM)
One of the oldest types of brand protection software technologies, DRM is best suited for protecting digital products from unauthorized distribution and enforcing licensing terms. Among the methods used are encryption, watermarking, and access control.
Top 8 Brand Protection Software Solutions
Depending on the needs of your business and the brand abuse threats it faces online, you may need one or more brand protection software tools. Here are the top eight solutions you should consider to protect your brand integrity:
BrandVerity helps brands stop trademark violations and affiliate non-compliance in paid search ads. The platform monitors search engines’ PPC platforms for brand-related keyword ad placements to detect infringement aiming for brand compliance of online content and offers across the web.
Best for: Brands that work extensively with affiliates and resellers, and are looking to enforce brand compliance across paid search services.
Pricing: By inquiry
Review: “BrandVerity’s Paid Search Monitoring saves us countless hours by allowing one person in our local office to know exactly what is going on with our brand in every market across the globe.”
Memcyco is a digital trust platform that takes a preventative approach to brand protection by prioritizing customer trust at the point of impact—the page impersonating your genuine brand website. Memecyco’s PoSA™ technology enables end-to-end digital brand security to protect your website and its users from brandjacking.
The suite features an always-on website monitoring service that analyzes user behavior on your website to detect suspicious activity indicative of an attacker gathering information and checking your defenses. A unique website DRM that makes it harder for attackers to mimic your genuine website for nefarious purposes, while giving you the tools to nurture digital trust with your customers at every interaction with your website.
Best for: Preventing brandjacking and website spoofing or impersonation
Pricing: By request. A free demo is available.
Review: “This is the only solution that we know of which can make our users aware in real-time that they are accessing an impostor site.”
Bolster’s AI-powered solution automates the detection, analysis, and takedown of online fraud, scams, and infringements across domain name registrations, social media platforms, app stores, and the dark web. Promising a meager rate of false positives and 95% takedowns without manual intervention, Bolster connects to over 12 social media platforms and 400 app stores to look for brand impersonation instances it can attempt to take down.
Best for: Preventing account takeovers
Pricing: By inquiry
Review: “Bolster’s Artificial Intelligence protected my brand by recognizing suspicious websites. It looks through text and images to find hidden and fraudulent codes.”
4. Red Points
You can use Red Points to find, track, and remove counterfeit listings and sellers from the web. It includes a domain registration scanner and takedown service to protect its clients’ intellectual property. Red Points may be the software for you if you want to enforce an IP strategy and eliminate gray market sales and counterfeiting.
Best for: Fighting counterfeits, piracy, impersonation, and distribution abuse
Pricing: Bespoke pricing plans for Products, Identity, and Content protection
Review: “The swift removal of these knockoffs allows us to protect our brand, our sales margins and ensures that customers buying Mighty Mug are getting an authentic product, backed by our warranty.”
Sentryc is another brand monitoring and takedown service that promises automatic removal of counterfeit offers and trademark law enforcement in 48 hours. SentryC will scan social media and websites for trademark infringement instances, and enable you to remove counterfeit products with just one click—even on the go or with your smartphone.
Best for: Businesses with registered trademarks in the EU
Pricing: Upon request
Review: “The software is very flexible and inspires us again and again.”
For businesses operating in Asia rather than the EU, there’s Nabcore. Nabcore’s focus is on interlocked physical and digital solutions to protect businesses from brand abuse, primarily through QR codes. Nabcore offers product authentication (both on and offline) and supply chain visibility to protect against illegal overruns, pilferage, or gray market diversion.
Best for: Brand protection and tracking in Asia’s gray market
Pricing: By inquiry
Review: “Their solution presentation is very clean and clear. Certain amount of customization is also possible…”
BrandShield’s online anti-counterfeiting solution scans the internet and detects phishing threats, online brand abuse, TM infringements, and counterfeit sales. BrandShield uses AI and machine learning to find and remove infringements like counterfeits, gray market dealers, and brand impersonation. One of the most reliable takedown services available, BrandShield is suitable for large international retail brands like Levi’s and New Balance.
Best for: Enterprise-level digital risk protection and brand protection
Pricing: Upon request
Review: “The analytical capabilities of BrandShield allow our team to locate the most damaging online problems for New Balance at any given time.”
Tracer’s brand protection solution helps brands find IP and trademark violations and take action as quickly and as accurately as possible. Tracer Protect supports detecting infringing content, classifying infringements, correlating incidents and bad actor networks, and enforcing customer directives. Tracer boasts of removing brand abuse across all the digital channels other brand protection providers can’t find.
Best for: Multi-channel brand protection
Pricing: By inquiry
Review: “Helps a lot [in] exposing hidden networks of brand abusers.”
Protect Your Brand at the Point of Impact
Brand protection software is designed to serve the legal and marketing needs of popular brands that attract fraudsters. Built to detect brand infringement and counterfeiting online, classic brand protection software is often a partial solution to an increasingly complex problem.
Memcyco’s Proof of Source Authenticity (PoSA) technology delivers Zero Day protection and real-time detection at the point of impact. With Memcyco, you can stop playing whack-a-mole with brandjackers, protect your website from spoofing, and empower your security teams to stay a step ahead of brand fraud.
Book a demo today to see how it protects your business.
Chief Marketing Officer