Posted by: Mark Stevens | November 23, 2007

Fraudsters Flock to the Web

The Internet: The World’s Street Corner for Counterfeit Goods

The challenge of protecting one’s brand – including its trademarks and intellectual property – is immeasurably more difficult in the Internet Age, given the medium’s global reach and the sheer volume of online communications and transactions.Forrester Research estimates that $259.1 billion worth of goods and services will be bought online in 2007, up from $219.9 billion in 2006.1

It is common knowledge that the Web is a premier channel for selling counterfeit goods.According to Gieschen Consultency’s 2006 Counterfeit and Piracy Intellegence Report, global online sales of counterfeit goods account for 14 percent of total counterfeit trade, a figure that translates into nearly $100 billion in 2006.Prior to the rise of the Internet, counterfeit and gray market goods2 were a significant problem, but much of their distribution occurred at epicenters such as Canal Street in New York City and the Silk Market in Beijing – and on street corners in cities around the world.Today, these fraudulent goods are advertised on and/or sold at a wide range of online venues, including:

Business-to-business (B2B) trade boards and exchanges

Auction sites

E-commerce web sites

Pay-per-click sites and paid placement advertisements

Via email solicitation by fraudulent parties

 

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