This is a bit of a tricky question to answer, but I'll try my best to explain it.

Essentially, I'm trying to figure out the legality of a scam designed to coerce victims into deleting their YouTube channel (and from what I've heard the scam might involve transferring the channel to someone else) under the guise that the person sending the message is "YouTube Support". The act may not necessarily be illegal, but surely claiming to be YouTube Support with your icon as the Google logo must be illegal in some regard?

I'm torn to be honest, because the simple act of claiming to be support shouldn't itself be illegal. YouTube Support is not a valid trademark, but the Google logo is. I'm not a lawyer, so I figured I would get a more clear answer here. From what I know, U.S. trademark is designed to provide general protection that overlaps (i.e. Blizzard Games wouldn't be a valid trademark because the purpose of the Blizzard trademark is to provide protection to a company that creates games and the average person wouldn't be able to discern between the Blizzard that creates Overwatch vs. the Blizzard Games that creates Underclock, but Blizzard Refrigerators would be), but that's not the case with claiming to be YouTube support.



Giving a false name, or impersonating someone, is not in all cases illegal. However, doing so in order to obtain a financial or other benefit, or in order to unfairly deprive someone else of advantages might well constitute fraud. This is usually grounds for a civil lawsuit, but in some cases may be a criminal offense, depending on the jurisdiction and the detailed facts.


The names of businesses, products, and services are often protected as trademarks. Using a trademark, or a confusingly similar word, phrase, or graphic, in order to create confusion or induce a consumer to falsely believe that ones is affiliated with or endorsed by the trademark holder is normally trademark infringement, and can subject the infringer to a lawsuit.

However if such unauthorized use of a trademark is not done "in commerce", that is not identifying or promoting a product or service, it may not be trademark infringement.

In any case, trademark infringement is a tort, not a crime. This means that the trademark holder may sue an infringer if the holder so chooses. But the police will not normally arrest someone for trademark infringement, nor does a third party who is not the holder have a right to bring a legal action for trademark infringement.


If the impersonation is part of a scam intended to gain financial benefits improperly, that may well be a crime. As such it can be reported to law enforcement. It is generally up to the law enforcement agencies or government prosecutors which crimes to prosecute, and which ones to leave alone. There authorities have limited resources of money and personnel. Attempted scams where no money or value was gained by the scammers are often not of high priority. The victim cannot force the authorities to take action in most jurisdictions.

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