Counterfeits are losing sales and business in UAE

The number of counterfeit items has dropped down after Khaleej Times took a joint initiative against the presence of counterfeit goods at different locations like a raid on Karama shops.

Abdul, 40 who owns a shop for ladies’ bags and purses in Karama said that that he has faced a setback in his business. Earlier when he had opened the shop, he used to make Dh2,000 but now he makes only Dh100. Sometimes he is not able to sell a single item.

This is the third time he had opened a shop in Karama. Five years ago, the authorities had fined him Dh50,000 during a crackdown against fake products.

“After paying that hefty fine with great difficulty, I closed down my shop and went back to India for a few years.”

He further said that after paying the big fine he closed down his shop and went back to India. On the rising issue of fakes, he says, “Many years ago people used to display fake items at the counter but now they are hidden underground or inside secret basements. Many tourists still come to buy fake products they do not mind buying a copy.

Ahmad Almheiri, senior manager of the business protection department at the DED, said: “If they are selling in a secret apartment, it means they know that the DED is always in the market and that it’s hard to sell counterfeits in Dubai.”

Source: Khaleej Times

UK police warn YouTubers against promoting counterfeit makeup

UK police recently warned Youtubers against promoting counterfeit makeup. The police believe that counterfeit makeup is jeopardizing the health of the consumers. Authorities say that fake cosmetics have been found to contain toxic elements like mercury, arsenic, lead and rat droppings. The police said that counterfeit makeup products which are being sold abundantly online can leave users with infections and burns. The warning has been issued after many YouTubers posted videos using counterfeit products to see their comparison with authentic brands.

Charles James the famous US fashion blogger tried to create a signature look with counterfeit cosmetics in a video which was watched more than six million times. The famous UK daily ‘The Telegraph discovered numerous videos on YouTube viewed by children as young as 11 and one from UK YouTube vlogger which had more than 700,000 views. In many videos, the viewers were not warned about their content.

Detective Inspector Nick Court of the City of London Police’s Intellectual Property Crime Unit said: “We’re concerned that popular YouTube stars are using counterfeit makeup in their tutorial videos. This not only puts them at risk of infections, rashes and burns, it could also encourage their followers to use the same harmful products.

He also said, “It’s great that YouTubers are calling out counterfeit makeup for not giving shoppers the same quality as the genuine brands. We are however keen to make sure they don’t expose themselves to health risks in the process.”

Source: Telegraph.co.uk

Man prints fake currency with the help of YouTube tutorial

Inspired by a YouTube tutorial on printing fake Indian currency, a man named Ravi Sandhu printed fake notes in the denominations of Rs 2000, Rs 500 and Rs 200.

He first started to circulate them in interiors of Punjab, but after an action by the police, he shifted his base to Delhi. He used to circulate fake currency at weekly markets and liquor shops. Police have confiscated his set-up and fake notes, with a total value of Rs 1.38 lakh. Sandhu confessed, that till date, he has printed fake notes with a total value of Rs 10 lakh

He also revealed that the Punjab Police had earlier arrested him in connection with the fake current racket. After coming to Delhi, he had become more careful in his activities and would change his hideout every three months to avoid being caught. DCP Monika Bhardwaj said that an FIR has been registered against Sandhu for printing fake currency and, the case is still ongoing to know if Sandhu had any accomplices.

The accused would download pictures of the notes and then take printouts on normal paper. The notes were cut with precision, crumpled and were kept in damp places to make them look original.

The fake currency racket was busted when police got a tip-off about his activities in a weekly market. A police team comprising of a Sub Inspector and others were formed and traps were laid at different places. Sandhu was caught when he reached a shop with the fake notes.

A senior officer said that they seized 64 fake currency notes in the denomination of Rs 2000, 17 notes of Rs 500 and eight notes of Rs 200. If you analyse carefully you can easily identify the difference in the quality of the note, paper and thread when compared to original currency notes.

Source: TOI

 

Authorities seize counterfeit Crocs footwear in West Bengal

Lately, enforcement operation authorities have seized hundreds of counterfeit Crocs footwear along with shoes and bags from local stores in Kalimpong and Siliguri in West Bengal.

Crocs is a world leader in innovative casual footwear for women, men and children, today announced that recent raids in West Bengal, India, resulted in the seizure of hundreds of pairs of counterfeit Crocs products, including bags and footwear, as well as two arrests. The raids are part of Crocs’ proactive anti-counterfeit enforcement campaign with local authorities.

The raids were carried out at New Shalimar Shoes at Kalimpong and against Jay Maa Trading Company at Siliguri in West Bengal. The owners of the stores were arrested and will be produced in legal proceedings.

Sara Hoverstock, Crocs’ Associate General Counsel said, “Crocs takes its intellectual property very seriously and will continue to aggressively protect the brand against those who unfairly trade off Crocs goodwill.”

A report by OECD states that footwear was the topmost traded fake item at 22% in the year 2016.

Source: Securingindustry.com

Hooch tragedy in Barabanki claims 16 lives

After the ill-fated death of 16 people in Barabanki, UP due to the consumption of spurious liquor the Uttar Pradesh police have arrested three people whereas the UP Government has announced a compensation of Rs 2 lakh each for the deceased. Until now, the police have arrested three people and a salesman who was involved in the sale of spurious country made liquor however, the search of the owner is still underway.

Moreover, the police officials are also conducting raids at different locations to confiscate more stock of similar liquor brands which led to the death of consumers. Meanwhile, the State Government has formed a three-member committee headed by Uttar Pradesh Excise Commissioner to further investigate the matter. The committee has to submit its report within 48 hours to the State Government.

As of now, the district administration has suspended District Excise Officer, Excise Inspector, Ramnagar Circle Officer, and Station House Officer have been suspended with immediate effect. Among the deceased include four members of the same family. Most of the victims belong to Raniganj village in the Ramnagar region of Barabanki district.

Source: First Post

Hindustan Unilever takes a tough stance against counterfeiting

One of India’s biggest pure-play consumer goods firm Hindustan Unilever has on an average filed two cases of intellectual property rights and trademarks violations -weekly in FY19. This is considered to be the company’s tough stance against fake products that use identical logos or packaging.

With more than 90 such cases during March, HUL’s latest number is about eight times more than the cases in 2018 and twice the preceding two years combined. Most of the cases were filed in the Bombay High Court. The manufacturers of Dove soap and Lipton tea said that a higher number of such cases are a reflection of duplication that has grown over the past few years.

Dev Bajpai, Executive Director, Legal & Corporate Affairs HUL says, “We have shifted our focus on actions resulting in value impact and started directing our efforts more on curtailing counterfeits at manufacturing and filling points than on the retail trade alone. This has resulted in curbing counterfeit trade at the source.”

In March, HUL filed a case against Mahadev Soap in Bombay High court. The company based in Bardoli; Surat was involved in alleged trademark violation. HUL claimed that the company’s washing powder brand ‘Go-Win’ had an identical packaging to its highly popular washing powder brand ‘Wheel’. Similarly, HUL took action against Navi-Mumbai based Glint Cosmetics which was manufacturing brands like ‘Fasaline’ and ‘Fair & Life’ identical to HUL’s famous brands ‘Vaseline’ and ‘Fair & Lovely.’

Source: Economic Times

Drug technical advisory board recommends mandatory QR coding on API labels

In order to ensure the quality of drugs and check the sale of fake drugs in the market, the DTAB (Drugs Technical Advisory Board) has recommended mandatory QR coding on labels of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (API). The QR codes will help in tracing the origin and movement of APIs from manufacturers to formulators through a networking system.

DTAB in a recent meeting noted that the security and integrity of API in proper storage condition played a very important role in maintaining its quality in the supply chain. The board also added that the stakeholders had suggested for implementing QR coding on APIs for tracing the origin and movement of drug ingredients.

While speaking on the development, a senior Health Ministry official said that the DTAB after detailed deliberation has recommended to include mandatory provisions under the Drug and Cosmetics Rules 1945. Other officials from the Health Ministry confirmed the numerous benefits of QR coding on API which included better price control and quality control.

APIs are the active raw materials used in the medicines to give them their therapeutic effect. A large share of APIs are being procured from other countries but the Health Ministry envisions to become self-reliant. Earlier, FICCI has also said that the reliance on other countries for API exposes India to disruptions in supply chain and pricing volatility.

Recently, the Supreme Court had directed the Central Govt. to develop a system that would benefit consumers by controlling the prices of drugs. The Health Ministry says that it has been working on introducing the QR coding for medicine packaging which can then be linked to a software supervised by NPPA (National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority).

Source: The Hindu

Major clamp down on fake shirts, shoes and watches

In a recent development bureau of customs destroyed fake shoes, six Rolex wristwatches and soaps having a total value of PHP 1.80 million. The incident took place in Camp Crame, Quezon City in the Philippines. The clampdown and destruction of fake goods marked the celebration of National Intellectual Property Rights Month.

As per the statement issued by the customs officials, the counterfeit products seized and destroyed from various areas were a result of ongoing efforts to secure the country’s border from counterfeit and pirated goods. Among the many confiscated fake products, six counterfeit Rolex watches came from Thailand. The items were found inside the luggage of a passenger caught in the X-ray images.

The assorted counterfeit shoes and soaps came from the operation conducted by operatives from the intellectual property rights division a part of the intelligence group. Some other items destroyed in the anti-counterfeiting operation were fake cigarettes, bags, wallets, phone accessories, shirts, belts, CDs among others.

The import of fake goods is restricted under Republic Act No. 8293 known as the ‘Intellectual Property Code of the Philippines. Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero vowed to secure the country’s border and protect local buyers against counterfeit products.

Source: canadianinquirer.net

Apple suffers from monetary loss due to fake iPhones

The global tech giant, Apple was recently scammed by a couple of students and the repercussions have turned out to be quite serious for the tech major. According to media reports two Chinese students at Oregon State University and Linn Benton Community college were involved in the import of smartphones from Hong Kong which were in fact counterfeits.

They tricked Apple by sending back the faulty counterfeits. In return, Apple sent them brand new legitimate iPhone as a part of its warranty process. Each of the new phones were shipped overseas for healthy profits. Since 2017, the scamsters had duped Apple with an amount of the value $895,800.

Surprisingly, Apple allowed fake iPhones to be replaced so easily. Employees at Apple were just following normal procedure and were assuming they were being given faulty handsets to process.

In total, Apple allowed 1,493 counterfeit iPhones to be exchanged with brand new ones however in total they attempted to exchange 3,069 sets. Eventually, Apple realized and sent a cease and desist order to the address where the culprits lived, but it was ignored.

The offenders are now facing charges of illegal trafficking of counterfeit goods, fraud and illegal exporting. However, both of the culprits are denying that they have sent counterfeit phones to Apple.

Source: in.pcmag.com

US President signs memorandum to curb counterfeit goods

US President Donald Trump recently signed a presidential memorandum to tackle the menace of online trafficking of fake goods. The memorandum is meant to stop the sale of fake products on sites like Amazon, eBay and Alibaba.

Peter Navarro Director of White House National Trade Council says, “This president has decided that it’s time to clean up this Wild West of counterfeiting and trafficking. The central core of the problem is that right now, third-party online marketplaces … have zero liability when it comes to trafficking in these counterfeit goods. That simply has to stop. We are going to attack that on numerous fronts.”

Meanwhile, e-commerce companies are also taking effective measures to stop the trade of counterfeits. Amazon spent a whopping $400 million on fighting fakes and has started brad registry and transparency program by the name of ‘Project Zero’.

However, Navarro also cleared that any possible actions by the administration to prevent online trafficking in counterfeit merchandise is premature. The directive orders the Department of Homeland security to work with other agencies on identifying the root of the problem.

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development estimates that the value of trade in counterfeit and pirated goods is about a half trillion dollars a year, with roughly 20% infringing on U.S. intellectual property, according to the directive.

Source: sfchronicle.com