Generally speaking, business and commerce in Ohio may not be as cutthroat as in other big business states, such as New York and California. Even so, you may still find your business is the victim of unfair competitive practices that threaten your livelihood. To be clear, business competition is a good thing for consumers. It helps to compel businesses to find better and more innovative ways to deliver goods and services. However, there is a line some businesses cross that may be cause for business litigation.
Forbes notes that some competitors may go as far as to sabotage your business processes and tools. This may cause you direct financial loss and spoil your good name. In other instances, some people or companies may be posing as you or your brand to offer services to unsuspecting customers. Others may go as far as to hire a click farm to repeatedly click your ad links so that your budget comes to naught.
Security is one of your best protections against sabotage. This is as true for brick and mortar businesses as for online companies. An actual security guard, security surveillance or alarm company can protect a physical business. For e-commerce websites, it is important to protect the website from attacks by using strong and complex passwords and limiting sharing and storing of credentials whenever possible.
In the event that you find you or your business is being impersonated, you may need to issue a public statement. This may not require involving the media, especially for small businesses. Instead, you can share the information on your website and on your social media platforms. If you have a physical store, sales reps and office workers may also inform consumers as they come in and encourage them to report any other instances they may come across. This may help to clear your name.
Another important step is alerting the proper authorities. What is unethical is not always illegal, but when it is, the law is on your side. Note also that sometimes the appropriate authorities may not be law enforcement. For example, if you are impersonated on a freelance marketplace, the authorities in question may be the owners of that platform. In some instances, however, unfair business competition may lead to charges ranging from vandalization to false impersonation or copyright infringement.
This article provides information on unfair business competition. It should not be interpreted as legal advice.