Google claims that two men used fraudulent copyright takedown notices to target 620,000 URLs in its search index, and has filed a lawsuit in California accusing them of sabotaging their competitors and trying to damage the search engine's business. Nguyen Van Duc and Pham Van Thien used 65 Google accounts to send a "barrage" of false DMCA notices about competing T-shirt services, according to the lawsuit, which wants them to pay for the amazing amount of time spent dealing with their lies.
The misrepresentations in notices sent to Google were potentially damaging to other parties too. Under fake names, the defendants falsely claimed to represent large companies such as Amazon, Twitter, and NBC News, plus sports teams including the Philadelphia Eagles, Los Angeles Lakers, San Diego Padres.
In similarly false notices, they claimed to represent famous individuals including Elon Musk, Taylor Swift, LeVar Burton, and Kanye West.
The complaint notes that some notices were submitted under company names that do not exist in the United States, at addresses where innocent families and businesses can be found. Google says that despite these claims, the defendants can be found in Vietnam from where they proudly advertise their 'SEO' scheme to others, including via YouTube.
Just following SEO best practices, your honor! Here's the complaint.