The Internet has become an essential channel for e-commerce. Its instant global reach and anonymity make it possible to sell nearly anything to anyone at any time. Counterfeiters know it and are increasingly exploiting the unlimited opportunities offered by the World Wide Web. Fake products such as clothing, cosmetics, pharmaceutical products, electronics or automotive parts, can be easily found online at a cheaper price than the original ones.
Despite these products looking like a bargain, they pose serious risks to your safety and health. Learning how to identify these scam websites selling counterfeit goods is vital to protect yourself and those around you from this growing threat!
The quality of counterfeit products seems to be improving, the products now looking like exact copies of the original brand. There are a growing number of online B2B exchanges and e-commerce sites offering these products, many advertised via social media and search engines. Counterfeiters have become smarter at promoting these fakes and use advanced marketing techniques such as paid search ads, search engine optimisation, unsolicited emails or the use of branded terms in domain names.
When shopping online, you are more likely to fall victim to counterfeiters. In a digital environment, without the physical product to look at and feel, it can be more difficult for you to spot the differences. Some illicit websites selling counterfeits are so sophisticated that it is hard to detect that they are scams. Infringers are also exploiting mobile app stores as an ideal shop front. Again, users are less likely to question the legitimacy of an app, especially if it appears in an official app store.
Every time you buy fake products you are wasting your money away on poor quality copies that can be very dangerous for your health and safety, and those of the ones around you. The damage these sales do to brands, businesses and economies goes beyond revenues: profits from counterfeiting fund other forms of serious organised crime like human trafficking, money laundering or labour exploitation, and its production factories violate in most cases labour and environmental laws and basic human rights.
The best way not to F***(ake) Up and put an end to the fast-growing market of counterfeit products sold on the Internet is to stop buying counterfeit goods online.
When you buy fakes you are putting at risk your health and safety and those of the ones around you
These products are made without regard to the health and safety standards applicable on the EU market. Some consumer goods might contain harmful substances and toxic levels of chemicals that can result in heart attack, coma or even death.