Counterfeit products appear in almost every industry – it’s a problem that is growing exponentially across the board. But for electronic manufacturers, this problem has become detrimental. The real threat isn’t just the billion dollar loss in revenue these companies face; it’s the potential harm that these counterfeit electronics pose to consumers.
Knock-off electronics and electronic components are defined as pieces of equipment that have misrepresented their origins or level of quality. According to Federal Bureau of Investigation agent Colleen Moss of the Cyber Crimes Unit, nothing is off limits to counterfeiters. “Phones, iPods, stereos, TVs, anything that you would consider as an electronic device can and likely is being counterfeited.” (Source).
Counterfeiters prefer to recreate low cost, high volume items such as extension cords and phone chargers. These types of products are not only easiest to pass off as fakes, but the cheapest to reconstruct. Because their quality is substandard, these knock-offs have the propensity to become very dangerous. If wires are poorly insulated, these counterfeit items are the perfect recipe for a house fire.
Just a few months ago, news broke all over the world about counterfeit phone chargers making their way into homes. According to an article by Daily Mail, Tim Gillooley said he was thrown across the room and left with blackened fingers when he tried to simply unplug his counterfeit charger. He worries that had he left his charger in longer it may have burned his home or harmed his family (Source). Another article by CNN attributes the death of a 23 year old girl to a faulty charger (Source).
The best advice DSS can give consumers right now is when buying replacement parts, to simply purchase from the company that made the device. Today, convincing counterfeit products and websites are at every turn but the risk is simply not worth saving the extra few dollars.
DSS and AuthentiGuard are working every day to prevent dangerous situations just like this. To learn how AuthentiGuard can help keep your brand and consumers safe, please visit www.AuthentiGuard.com