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Amazon and the US government team up to thwart online counterfeits

Operation Fulfilled Action could stop more fakes from going on sale.
Jon Fingas, @jonfingas
November 24, 2020
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Los Angeles CA, November 11/22/2017: Image of an Amazon packages. Amazon is an online company and is the largest retailer in the world. Cardboard package delivery at front door during the holiday season. shipping package parcel box on wooden floor with protection paper inside. Amazon.com went online in 1995 and is now the largest online retailer in the world.
Jorge Villalba via Getty Images

Amazon is following through on its reported plans to work with officials in its fight against counterfeits. The internet shopping giant has teamed up with the US government’s National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center (IPR Center for short) on an effort to prevent counterfeit products from entering the US. Operation Fulfilled Action will use shared data to stop fake goods at the border regardless of their intended destination.

The two will use a combination of joint data studies and “targeted inspections” to thwart counterfeiters. Any evidence obtained during the campaign will be used for ongoing investigations, the new allies said. Amazon’s Counterfeit Crimes Unit will lead the project, while DHL and US Customs and Border Protection are providing support.

This isn’t a completely new collaboration . Amazon routinely provides the IPR Center with data for known counterfeiters, and the company partnered with five others and the IPR Center in an effort to stamp out COVID-19 fraud.

Still, this is an acknowledgment that counterfeits remain a problem at online stores like Amazon. While automated systems and anti-counterfeit teams help, it can be difficult to stop every possible bogus product from reaching virtual shelves. A joint operation like this theoretically gives both Amazon and the government a much better insight into the true scope of counterfeiting.

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