How can I prove that I am the author of a work?

There is no copyright register as copyright protection arises automatically. In the case of a dispute, there are various ways of proving that you are the author of a work.


  • You could call witnesses.
  • You could provide your work to a notary or attorney, which would prove that you had access to the work at a certain point in time.
  • Finally, the Swiss Copyright Act (CopA) recognises “presumption of authorship”. As long as it is not proven otherwise, the author is the person whose name, pseudonym or sign appears on the copies or are given when the work is published.

WIPO launches its own digital evidence service: WIPO PROOF

With WIPO PROOF, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) has launched a global online service that provides proof of the existence of a digital file at a specific point in time.

The new service complements WIPO’s existing intellectual property systems by helping creators to take verifiable measures to better protect the results of their work.

The system is intended to reduce the risk of future legal disputes. WIPO acts as a time-stamping authority by issuing so-called ‘tokens’ (digital fingerprints of a digital file, stamped with the date and time, in any format and size).

WIPO Proof should make the settlement of IP disputes much easier. However, the instrument as such does not provide absolute IP protection. It neither guarantees the existence of the alleged right nor does it bind a court in its assessment of evidence.