Anti-Counterfeiting Education On Demand
November 18, 2020

2020 Anti-Counterfeiting Virtual Research Symposium

This symposium featured researchers and leaders of anti-counterfeiting initiatives discussing the health and safety effects of counterfeiting.

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2020 Anti-Counterfeiting Keynote Presentation: Intellectual Property Rights and Anti-Counterfeiting

Did you know the World Customs Organization estimates $512 billion of world merchandise trade in 2004 may have been counterfeits? Did you know that counterfeit footwear has topped the seizure list for 4 years, with 2019’s value in the United States totaling $78 million? What are the unique features of counterfeits? In her keynote presentation during the 2020 Virtual Research Symposium, Yi Qian, Ph.D, answers these questions, and more. 

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The Copyright and Trademarks Enforcement Data Landscape — A Comparative Review

Dennis Collopy has four decades of experience in intellectual property issues. His recent work examines what current data can tell us about counterfeiting, particularly on social media. Much of this work stems from research commissioned by the United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office. 

Collopy’s review of the enforcement data landscape analyzes international research on counterfeiting and piracy from 2014 to 2020. It assesses a new physical goods tracker that may help build a unique long-term data set of consumer attitudes toward counterfeits.

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Gen Z Insights: Brands and Counterfeit Products

The International Trademark Association (INTA)’s study of Generation Z consumers provides several keen insights on consumers who will shape future market attitudes. The survey asked nearly 5,000 consumers 18 to 23 years old in 10 nations about their attitudes toward counterfeit products and the different considerations influencing their purchase of these products. 

In the video above, watch Renee Garrahan of the International Trademark Association present insights from a survey of nearly 5,000 young consumers in 10 nations.

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Panel: Consumer Attitudes and Behavior Toward Counterfeit Purchases

In this panel discussion, industry experts noted that the effectiveness of anti-counterfeiting messages can vary by product. Some other discussion points included whether top-tier manufacturers see the benefit of spending money on anti-counterfeiting, the importance of public safety messages, and what strategies might brand owners pursue to reduce counterfeiting.

This session was moderated by Cliff Grammich, Ph.D, Director, Birdhill Research and Communications, LLC.

The panelists were:

  • Dennis Collopy, University of Hertfordshire 
  • Kasie Brill, U.S Chamber of Commerce 
  • Michael Hanson, Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) 
  • Judy Jeevarajan, Underwriters Laboratories 
  • Rich Kaeser, Johnson & Johnson

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Financial Aspects of the Trade in Counterfeit Products

Counterfeit goods fraud is reputedly one of the fastest growing businesses in the world. Considerable academic work has examined the flow of counterfeit goods, but little has examined the financial mechanisms for such work. Anqi Shen and colleagues undertook an exploratory study of the financial management of the counterfeit goods trade. They addressed how counterfeiters secure and sustain financial backing, settle payments, and spend or invest profits. Shen and colleagues interviewed law enforcement and other government officials, academics and researchers, criminal entrepreneurs, legitimate entrepreneurs, and other knowledgeable individuals.

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Tactics of a Total Business Solution to Brand Protection

Counterfeiting is a multifaceted problem requiring a multifaceted approach. Typical anti-counterfeiting efforts, however, are scattered or reactive. To better address the problem, Professor Jeremy Wilson and colleagues recommend a total-business solution, involving all functions of a firm.

This research, based on a survey of anticounterfeiting practitioners and other experts, found hundreds of unique tactics firms could use in the fight against counterfeiting. Legal function tactics were among the most common. These can include seeking injunctions against counterfeiters or organizing evidence for law enforcement investigators. Legal function actions can signal willingness to fight infringement and thereby deter infringers. More generally, prevention, proactivity and strategy should be emphasized in anti-counterfeiting efforts. Enforcement metrics, such as those on customs locations and personnel, can also inform efforts such as training of law enforcement.

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Panel: Links Between Counterfeiting and Criminal Activities

This panel discussion explores the specific links between counterfeiting and other crimes, and what can be done to address them. It was moderated by Cliff Grammich, Ph.D, Director, Birdhill Research and Communications, LLC.

The panelists included:

  • Anqi Shen, Northumbria University
  • Diganta Das, University of Maryland
  • Bruce Foucart, BASCAP
  • Melissa Maranville, DeVille an Associates
  • Kevin Olive, Underwriters Laboratories
  • Peter Sandborn, University of Maryland

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