Another huge haul demonstrates why brand protection is a must
More than 1,600 counterfeit items were seized at Edinburgh Airport with the fraudulent goods having an estimated value exceeding $1,000,000 — and that’s from only two crack-downs at the international airport within just one week of each other. The UK Border Force found thousands of handbags and shoes that were falsely labelled to look like various luxury, designer and sports brands. The counterfeit articles have been linked to organised crime syndicates of various sorts, indicating the truly serious and heinous nature behind such counterfeit materials.
Safeguarding innovators and consumers
Such a seizure not only shows the ubiquity of counterfeit products, it also demonstrates the sheer volume — counterfeit goods are no longer a shady niche underbelly that grabs at the fringes of the market, but are a force that requires safeguards and brand protection. One million dollars worth of counterfeit merchandise in the course of a single week speaks to the pervasive nature of the problem — and that’s just what the authorities were able to catch. The numerous ties to organised crime show the level of infrastructure and manpower behind the illicit distribution and manufacturing. However, legal authorities and government raids can only do so much. In an environment so prone to fraud and counterfeit, there needs to be a significant reassessment of protecting intellectual property (IP) to ensure that it is effective, swift, and efficient. Only through such mechanisms can we properly safeguard true innovators and protect valued customers. Brand protection starts with registering IP and creating authorised distribution channels that are difficult to circumvent or replicate. Incidents such as the Edinburgh Airport seizure show the value of brand protection and how it should in general be considered one of the major pillars of any company, imperative to protecting a brand’s legacy, reputation, and most importantly, its customers.