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It is a common worry among entrepreneurs and inventors that their novel idea will be copied or stolen. According to the “Global Brand Counterfeiting Report 2018,” the value of counterfeit goods in 2017 amounted to $1.2 trillion. The prevalence of counterfeit goods devalues the brands they imitate and hurts retailers. Counterfeit goods are typically made from low-­‐grade components, sometimes put into identical packaging as the authentic product tricking consumers to believe the goods they are buying are genuine, when in fact they are cheap imitations of the real thing. Protecting revenue and reputation are key goals for putting a stop to counterfeit sales, but most importantly safeguarding customers from health and safety risks associated with cheap knockoffs.

The internet has become a major enabler in the sale of online counterfeit products, providing criminals with access to a global market. The proliferation of online counterfeiting is increasing, making online brand protection a complex and ever-­‐changing issue. According to World Trademark Review, one in every four online purchases involves pirated goods, and counterfeiting affects every market; from fashion and food to pharmaceuticals and consumer goods. Apple is the most counterfeited tech brand in the world, and Nike is the most counterfeited apparel brand, but a brand of any size is at risk of counterfeiting.

As a brand owner, you cannot stop criminals from highjacking your brand, but you can prevent them from succeeding. It is an investment in time and money, which pales in comparison to the damage done to your brand without taking the necessary precautions.

The first step in preventing counterfeiting of your online brand is to register your intellectual property rights (IPR), such as a patent or trademark, in ALL markets.

An experienced IP attorney who understands how to protect your assets in the most proactive and effectiveways is key in protecting your brand. The professionals at Ference & Associates work with clients to ensure they have the appropriate protection and develop a strategy to protect your products and brand from online counterfeiting. Call +1 412 741 8400 or contact us via our site for more information.