Invitations to register published patents may be spelt S C A M

on September 5, 2013

If you are listed as an inventor on a patent application, you may have received one or more invitations to register your patent application in an international database on payment of a fee. The invitations may well appear legitimate and will likely come from companies with names such as “Worldwide Database of Patents”, “Central Patent & Trademark Database” or “World IP Database”. However, these have no connection to the body that actually manages prosecution of international patent applications, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), and such registrations are not part of the prosecution of your patent applications.

The companies are taking their information about your patent applications from the public record following legitimate publication there and essentially it amounts to a scam by a private company. One of the warning signs on the invitations is often the various countries referenced – the company may be registered in one country, will list a different country for receipt of payments and then may well have a third country as a mailing address.

A number of national and international patent offices have highlighted this issue on their own websites.

WIPO have a list of the company names they have seen over the years:

Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) also have mentioned it as well:

With our extensive experience and expertise in patent matters, any Western inventors should let WORLDiscoveries decide on the legitimacy or otherwise of any patent-related correspondence – if you receive anything through the mail related to patent applications, forward it to our office and you need not worry about it any further.

ecommInvitations to register published patents may be spelt S C A M