The LocatorX Team
January 29, 2020
January 29, 2020
Counterfeiters aren’t just bad news for your business. They can also be downright dangerous for your customers’ well-being and safety. When it comes to the counterfeiting and pirating of commercial goods, the economic impact, legal implications, and health and safety risks are growing on a global scale.
For example, Amazon has drawn continued criticism for failing to get tough on counterfeit goods on its platform. A rampant stream ofChinese counterfeit goods has also exacerbated trade tensions between the U.S.and China, which recently signed a new trade agreement that commits to cracking down on pirated items. As part of this agreement, China has promised to revoke the operating licenses of e-commerce platforms that fail to stop the sale of counterfeit goods – but will those measures be enough?
For businesses, inadvertently purchasing counterfeit goods or having your own products ripped off can compromise brand reputation, customer relationships, and overall competitiveness. Here’s what you need to know about the risks of counterfeit products – and how to face them head-on.
The Real Dangers of Ripoffs
It’s estimated that roughly $1 trillion in commercial value was lost to counterfeit and pirated goods as of just five years ago – and that problem could triple by 2022. Between 2018 and 2019 alone, counterfeit activity rose a dramatic 40%. According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), counterfeit trade creates profits for organized crime gangs at the expense of companies and governments, with counterfeiters more likely to thrive where governance is poor.
The OECD also reported 24% of U.S. brands or patents were affected by counterfeiting in 2016 alone. This indicates a legitimate threat to overall consumer and business health in multiple ways. From an economic lens, counterfeit products siphon off sales of legitimate goods, creating lost revenue opportunities for companies. Counterfeit products are also quite often low-quality and can cause injuries, especially in the personal care or pharmaceutical industries.
How to Fight Back
As businesses face the threat of counterfeit items, a growing crop of solutions aim to help organizations protect the authenticity and legitimacy of their products. By combining innovations like tracking technology with a proactive approach to piracy, you can stay ahead of potential counterfeiters, all while ensuring your customers stay safe.
● Leverage technology to track authenticity at scale.
LocatorX’s newly launched Product Certificate Authority™ (PCA) solution helps to validate and verify the authenticity of your products before they’re even purchased. PCA enables companies to enroll and provide the proprietary information necessary within a Certified QR code to prove products are legitimate. This technology-enabled, cost-effective approach can help build trust with your own suppliers and customers, ensuring that every item that changes hands is genuine.
● Know where you’re buying from.
Maintain strong supplier partnerships and be especially vigilant based on where your products originate. According to the OECD, the majority of fake goods that are seized in Customs come from mainland China and Hong Kong. LocatorX’s PCA technology can be applied to individual units and boxes with unique Certified Quick Response codes (CQR), making it nearly impossible for counterfeiters to copy tags and re-use them – which is especially useful for high-risk markets.
● Report it when you see it.
If you’re a consumer brand selling your products online or have come across suspicious products in your own online searches, visit STOPfakes.gov for details on identifying potential counterfeiters and reporting them to the proper authorities. Reporting pirated goods can help prompt product recalls, ultimately shielding consumers from inferior or even unsafe items.
Protecting Your Business, Right Now
In an economy filled with would-be counterfeiters, it’s crucial to keep tabs on goods each and every step of the way. LocatorX’s technology enables brands and consumers to access an item’s current location and audit trail from its origin. This provides protection against theft, counterfeiting and product diversion, all while strengthening consumer connections.
By helping consumers select only legitimate products and notifying authorities when counterfeit products crop up, organizations can protect brand reputation and build real – not fake – customer partnerships.
Start protecting your business with a custom LocatorX solution.