Brands are under attack daily in more ways than one. Highly-visible, successful brands are likely to endure sophisticated attacks from counterfeiters that damage brand reputation and imperil consumer safety.
“Many consumers, when they think of counterfeiting, often think of fake luxury items, knock-off designer bags or watches in street markets, but the challenge is multifaceted and far more complex. It involves challenges across a wide spectrum of brand assets, affecting intellectual property, packaging, products, brand reputation, as well as the safety and health of consumers.
And when we talk about these attacks, it is not just an issue of fake products. Consumer brands must also contend with so-called “grey goods,” which are authentic products illegally diverted from the supply chain (i.e., manufactured off the books). Related to this problem, but unique in its own way, is product diversion, which is when an item is moved out of authentic markets and either sold in other unauthorized markets unknowingly, or re-entered into original markets to evade taxes. Serialized identities on packaging and traceability can help with product diversion; brands can track the product through the supply chain and analyze normal versus suspicious location data.
There are now a number of platforms and vehicles on which counterfeit sellers can connect directly with consumers. And while some consumers knowingly buy fakes, many others believe they are buying an authentic brand product, and become unwitting accomplices. But regardless of the reason, the impact is significant.”