Today is world anti-counterfeiting day, now in it’s 24th year! Today we raise awareness of the dangers of fake goods. Figures released by the world economic forum showed that illicit trade costs the global economy $2.2 trillion overall. This figure is shocking, and unfortunately the issue of counterfeiting and copies doesn’t only just hit the pocket, it can damage brand reputation and consumer health. In 2021 European customs authorities seized almost 7 million counterfeit goods that were found to be dangerous to the health and safety of customers.
So how do you fight back against fakes?
We know how infuriating it can be for brands when they find copycat versions of their products popping up online. That’s why we’ve put together our top 6 brand protection strategies to help fight back against fakes. For a deeper dive in to each point, download our comprehensive Ebook guide here.
1. Register your intellectual property
IP is territorial. You should register as much as you can in each country/region you trade and manufacture. This includes:
Copyright – This is an automatic right, useful for you to take down any listings online that are using your images or copy to sell fake versions of your products.
Trademarks – A trademark is a word, phrase or symbol that is unique to your business such as a logo, strapline, or name. Trademarks are relatively cheap/simple to register and can be worth their weight in gold.
Designs – Any design that is unique to your product, for example the appearance, shape, or decoration. Design Rights do not cover the function of your product.
Patents – These are exclusive rights for original inventions. They can be complex and expensive to protect around the world, but for certain products are invaluable.
2. Register your products and trademarks with the EUIPO enforcement database
This is a completely free service that connects you with border enforcement, and helps protect your products.
Simply register your products and their connected intellectual property rights, and enforcement authorities across Europe will be able to check for originality if fakes appear.
3. Search for infringements online an gather the evidence
Search online marketplaces using direct and indirect variants of your brand and product names/descriptions. Also use image searches to find infringements of your copyrighted images.
4. Make a test purchase (or two)
Buy the item you suspect to be a counterfeit or copy. This will enable you to compare like for like and gather evidence.
5. Monitor and enforce
Regularly monitor online marketplaces for fakes and report infringements for them to be taken down.
6. Call in the experts
At SnapDragon Monitoring, we are trusted to protect brands online. Fakes and copies can have detrimental effects on your reputation, revenue and your customers, and it is our job, 24×7, to find and take them down. Our multi-national team of brand protection specialists detect, monitor and enforce against abuses of your intellectual property using our proprietary software, Swoop. We detect infringements over ecommerce, social media and domains so that you can be sure your brand is guarded online.
We also routinely perform test purchases if required and handle all evidence gathering and documentation – providing our clients, and their legal teams, with a handy report to be used for court action.
In addition, our new SaaS service is perfect for those who like to monitor and enforce themselves. Our Swoop software monitors on your behalf, and enforcement is something you/your team can then prioritise and action. If a demo would be useful, please contact us today.