Amazon.com will work closely with law enforcement in the United States and around the world on anti-counterfeit initiatives. Notably, the online retailer has launched a robust reporting system that will alert authorities of every suspect transaction.
The Counterfeit Problem
E-commerce has revolutionized the retail market and opened up a world of opportunity — and it’s also led to a dramatic increase in counterfeit items. Studies suggest that half a trillion dollars in counterfeit goods flood the market annually. Big brands, like Nike and luxury companies, have launched lawsuits against sellers profiting from intellectual property misappropriation, but smaller startups simply don’t have the resources.
For the past several years, to help smaller sellers Amazon has been trying to fight counterfeiting internally. The retailer sued accounts suspected of peddling counterfeit goods and implemented reporting tools to better facilitate the initiative. In 2018, the e-commerce monster swiped its site of vendors selling unapproved Apple-related products.
Amazon Set to Share More User Data with Counterfeit Task Forces
This year, Amazon announced plans to beef up its counterfeit product reporting. Under the new system, Amazon will share more information with law enforcement about accounts the company suspects of trafficking in fake goods.
Previously, Amazon only shared counterfeit data with authorities when it thought it had enough evidence for police to pursue the case successfully. Now, Amazon plans to hand over seller information, to both European and U.S. officials, every time it confirms a counterfeit sale. The policy shift will significantly increase the amount of intellectual property reporting that law enforcement will have to analyze and act on.
What Information is Amazon Handing Over?
Over the past couple of weeks, Amazon has conducted meetings with government officials to discuss the new measures. According to reports, attendees also discussed ideas about better enforcing intellectual property laws and criminal schemes plaguing the e-commerce market.
Amazon will report merchants’ names, company, product, and contact information to officials if it:
- Confirms an account was selling fake goods; and
- The account holder fails to make a successful appeal via Amazon’s process.
Connect with an E-commerce Lawyer
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