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Counterfeit goods fraud

Many have lost money and suffered emotionally due to sophisticated cyber frauds in the UK over the past few years. The method is complex and sometimes difficult to combat in many such cases. Online visitors are presented with several products like electrical devices, designer clothes, cosmetics, etc. 

The buyers are presented with bogus products with known brand's intellectual property that allows the seller to make huge profits. It may appear like a bargain, but the customer gets a duplicate unworthy product. 

Many websites offer such items, and they often look legitimate. They may feature the adverts on reputable sites and allow payment through major credit cards. 

However, these platforms enable criminals to earn from the intellectual property of reputable businesses. 

Many such products can be unsafe, of bad quality and dangerous. It may include fake medicines, food and alcohol that can lead to health risks. It also includes pirated digital assets, computer games, and CDs offered at online auctions, web marketplaces, or sometimes door-to-door. 

Such goods have caused huge losses to the apparel industry, where the top brands suffer due to the use of unauthorised logos and brand marks sold by the copies. 

Spot The Signs

  • Suppose you find items not made by the brand but claimed to be from. 

  • The products are of inferior quality and are often passed off by the seller as a product from a well-known brand sold at boot sales, stalls, fairs or exhibitions. 

How To Protect Yourself?

  • One should trust the instinct. If the offer appears too attractive or discounted, it can be fake. Legitimate designer products are rarely discounted, so one should not quickly buy items.

  • Examine the website details, grammar and address carefully. Often, the website offering bogus duplicate products has a minor address change, or they try to deceive by slightly changing the spelling of a popular brand or shop web address.

  • One should not assume the address with a UK is based in the country. You should carefully see the local address and PO Box numbers.

How To Verify the Products?

  • Do complete research on the items you intend to buy.

  • Always order from reputable retailers and do not expect to buy a high-end designer product from a small shop stall.

  • Always check the product description and seller websites to ensure quality. 

  • Check the packaging of the product. Be aware of low-quality packaging and those with no logo.

  • If you get any counterfeit product at online shops, report it to the seller and then claim a refund with the seller. You can even raise a dispute with the website and report the counterfeit

  • In addition, reliable eCommerce sites like Amazon offer you to return products and get a refund for a suspected counterfeit item.

Date Published: Sep 13, 2023

Types of fraud

A-Z of fraud

To help understand which fraud you've been affected by, we've categorised them into an alphabetical list.

What is fraud and cyber crime?

Cybercrimes can be of two types. First, it can be cyber dependent, where the fraudsters use online devices to convince the victim to accept their offers.

Advance fee fraud

If you are trying to get a loan for a house or a car, they ask to meet the provider to get the financing arrangement and pay the finder's fee in advance.

Corporate fraud

Corporate frauds can be complicated, committed either by the firm or an individual. Nevertheless, it mostly involves cheating where the employee or the firm.

Individual fraud

There are many types of individual frauds related to advance fees, investments, insurance brokers, bogus tradespeople, Ponzi schemes, pension liberation.

Online fraud

Hence the number of cases of online fraud is increasing each year, and most such cases include – account takeover, direct frauds, or scams related domain names.

Identity fraud and identity theft

The criminal uses the stolen identity of another person living or deceased to conduct unlawful activities like obtaining goods or services in another's name.

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