Copyright protection is given to any original work of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression from which it can be perceived, reproduced, or communicated.

Copyright is a form of protection provided by the laws of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code) to the authors of "original works of authorship." This protection is available to both published and unpublished works. Section 106 of the 1976 Copyright Act generally gives the owner of copyright the exclusive right to do and to authorize others to do the following:

  • "To reproduce the copyrighted work;
  • To prepare derivative works;
  • To distribute copies to the public by sale or other transfer of ownership, or by rental, lease, or lending;
  • To perform the copyrighted work publicly (in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, and motion pictures and other audiovisual works);
  • To display the copyrighted work publicly; and
  • In the case of sound recordings, to perform the work publicly by means of a digital audio transmission."

(Source: Circular 1, U.S. Copyright Office)


A trademark is a word, phrase, symbol, design (including a logo, slogan, sound, or motto), or any combination of these elements that is used by a business to identify a source of a product and to distinguish it from competing products.

A service mark is a word, phrase, symbol, or design that is used by a business to identify a service, like the hosted services operated by Verisign, to distinguish the service offered by the competition; in this way, service marks are analogous to a trademark. (For the purposes of this discussion, unless distinctions are made, "trademarks" refers to both trademarks and service marks).

Trade names are corporate or business names, and are not trademarks. A trade name identifies the provider of the business or service rather than the product itself. As a result the trade name does not designate or distinguish goods. Verisign is a trade name when it refers to the company (i.e., VeriSign, Inc.). When Verisign is referred to as a company, no trademark indicator is required.

For example: "Verisign operates intelligent infrastructure services that enable and protect billions of interactions every day across the world’s voice and data networks."

Some trade names, such as "Verisign," can also function as trademarks. When the company name is used to identify the origin of a Verisign product or service, "Verisign" functions as a trademark, and the ® symbol is required, following the company name.

Example: Verisign® Managed Security Services


  • Corporate name: "VeriSign, Inc., is a fast growing company." Removing the mark would leave an incomplete sentence ("Is a fast growing company.")
  • Trade name: "Verisign’s newest Website designs are useful."
  • Trademark: "Verisign® digital certificates have revolutionized the Internet." Removing the mark or replacing with "those" leaves a complete sentence ("Digital certificates have revolutionized the Internet," or "Those digital certificates have revolutionized the Internet.").


Verisign owns several patents and domain names. The absence of listing them all does not constitute a waiver of any and all intellectual property rights that VeriSign, Inc., has established in any of its products, services, programs, features, service marks, service names, or logos.