Amazon is providing a new avenue for consumers who receive defective products sold by third parties that cause personal or property damage: Amazon itself will help facilitate the claim process, but the seller remains liable for any damages. Starting Sept. 1, Amazon’s policy calls for consumers to contact Amazon directly to file the claim.
From chic fashion and perfumes to jewelry and fine art, product knockoffs are nothing new. Nor is trying to find and stop them—or at least minimize the impact on the original brand. However, the recent fascination with “dupe culture,” especially on social media, now poses an even greater risk to brands. Here’s how to protect yourself.
Amazon as of Sept. 1 will require third-party sellers in the U.S. to provide their business name and address in their seller profile, a requirement that has been in place for some time in Europe, Japan and Mexico based on government regulations. The benefits to consumers are not entirely clear, ditto the impact on counterfeiting.
Amazon is taking a serious run at counterfeit sellers on its marketplace, with the creation of a Counterfeit Crimes Unit that includes former federal prosecutors, investigators and data analysts. The company said it has limited counterfeit complaints to 0.1% of items listed, but legislators and media investigations have still taken it to task.
With a legislator raising the alarm that consumers’ “lives are at risk” due to dangerous counterfeit ecommerce products, a bipartisan group proposed the SHOP SAFE Act to crack down on ecommerce fakes. The GAO found that 20 of 47 items purchased from third-party sellers on popular consumer websites were counterfeit.
The U.S. government is cracking down on the sale of counterfeit ecommerce items and pirated goods, warning of stricter rules and penalties for participants in a rogue economy that was valued at $509 billion in 2016. A DHS report announcing the crackdown came in response to an April 2019 memorandum from President Trump.
The U.S. Trade Representative’s office is considering adding Amazon sites in the UK, Canada, Germany, India and France to the Notorious Markets list due to alleged growth in sale of counterfeit goods, based on a request from an apparel trade group, according to WSJ. Chinese marketplaces Taobao and Pinduoduo are on the 2019 list.
The retail industry has a counterfeit problem and it’s threatening brands across the world. According to the International Chamber of Commerce, the global economic cost of counterfeiting and piracy could reach $2.3 trillion by 2022. Here are measures retailers should take to prevent 3P sellers from offering counterfeit goods.