Neither the German Patent and Trademark Office nor the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (Trade Marks and Designs) – the Trademark and Design Office for the entire territory of the European Union – nor the majority of the offices in the European Union recheck new applications of trademarks to conflicting earlier marks. Therefore, it is also possible to register a well-known brand such as „Microsoft“ for any goods and services, such as “software”. Such an application will not be rejected by the respective office due to the likelihood of confusion with an earlier registered trademark. Therefore, it is necessary for the proprietor of any trademark to regularly monitor not only the market in trade for any infringements, but also check the regularly published applications by the respective offices, whether there are identical or similar trademark registrations filed. In the case of identity or likelihood of confusion of the earlier mark to the application and the identity or similarity of the registered goods and / or services both signs claim protection for, an opposition against the registration of the later mark is regularly required. This prevents the registered trademark from weakening and it will strengthen the distinctiveness of the earlier mark.