17 February 2020
Once again, we are seeing how adept criminals are at infiltrating major e-commerce platforms and placing cheap, dangerous products for sale.
A host of life-threatening children’s car seats, were discovered for sale on several platforms, by BBC Panorama, and while there is no obvious evidence that the products were counterfeit, they were clearly designed to look like well-known makes. They even included labels with fraudulent ECE codes, to signify that they have been put through EU safety testing and could be legally sold on the UK market.
Phil Lewis the Director General of the Anti-Counterfeiting Group, based in the UK, explained that “counterfeiting is now worth $509 billion, world-wide, and is one of the world’s most lucrative transnational crimes. Moreover, the latest EU customs report indicates that 83% of counterfeit arrive from China and Hong Kong and over 34% of counterfeit goods, detained at our borders, now threaten the health and safety of consumers.
“The criminals involved in manufacturing and selling these seats and other menacing fake goods have no morals or care about the dangers they put our families in. Their only concern is to make money, at anyone’s expense.”
ACG is continually working alongside Trading Standards, Border Force, police and all the major e-commerce platforms to prevent and remove such items from being offered for sale. As a result, millions of fakes have been prevented from appearing or later removed.
However, Phil added that “while huge steps have been taken, counterfeiters and fraudsters are increasingly using more sophisticated methods to by-pass the checks being carried out. The result is that everyone is at increasing risk. Buyers need to be very aware that if a price seems too good to be true then it will be.
"Consumers should not take a chance on endangering friends and family. Always check the product description, customer reviews, the sellers’ profile and the country of origin."
Lastly, he advised potential buyers to try to compare the goods with similar products on well-known brands’ websites to try to spot any changes in details or defects in workmanship.
BBC news article: Amazon: Suspect child car seats found for sale on its store again: here
Photo source: Amazon
ACG represents more than 3,000 brands affected by this influx of fakes into the UK and delivers an international network of information, advice and contacts on all aspects of IP protection. Working with Government and law enforcement agencies since 1980, ACG is focused on providing an effective and sustained response to counterfeiting.
Membership with the ACG is the best way to work with government and enforcement bodies to protect your brand. Our Roadshows and training days help you reach out to police, trading standards and border force officers and tell them about your genuine products.