Businesses spend millions of dollars in creating and nurturing brands and it’s their right to be rewarded for their efforts. However, ask any top brand and they will tell you that the problem of counterfeits and pirated products pose a significant challenge to their revenue growth and profitability. It is estimated that counterfeiting and piracy is the biggest criminal ecosystem in the world. More than three percent of world trade is estimated to comprise of fake, counterfeit and pirated products, valued at around USD 500 billion.
To better understand the problem of counterfeiting and piracy, here’s a quick look at some of the most counterfeited brands in the world.
Ray-Ban – An Italian/American brand, Ray-Ban counterfeits can be found in the streets of most major cities in the world. Most buyers are people who have never seen an original piece, which is why it’s difficult for them to spot fake Ray-Ban sunglasses.
Viagra – Counterfeiting of popular medicines is a big problem in pharmaceutical industry. Not only it is a loss for pharma companies, but such fake medicines can also be fatal. It is estimated that around one million people die every year due to counterfeit medication. The most counterfeited drug in the world is Viagra.
Rolex – Headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, Rolex is the most counterfeited watch brand in the world. Fake or replica Rolex watches are quite difficult to spot, as they look quite like the original from the outside. Estimates indicate that there are more fake Rolex watches in the world than real ones. Some of the most commonly counterfeited Rolex watches include Submariner, Datejust and Cosmograph Daytona.
Apple – In electronics industry, Apple products, especially smartphones and accessories are among the most counterfeited items. Most of counterfeited Apple products are produced in China. A significant percentage is consumed domestically and rest is exported to global locations. Fake Apple products are not only substandard, but they can also create safety hazards. For example, fake Apple chargers and adapters are known to cause electrical shocks.
Nike – This is the most counterfeited brand in the world. Nike is the world’s largest producer of athletic shoes and apparel. While Nike shoes are the mainstay of counterfeiters, other apparel and accessories sold by the company are also counterfeited in voluminous quantities. Apart from Nike, other brands such as Adidas and Gucci are also facing significant challenges related to counterfeiting.
With online retail platforms, it has become a lot easier to sell counterfeit and pirated products. There have been several cases where counterfeit items were being sold on leading online platforms such as Wal-Mart, Amazon, Sears, eBay, Newegg, etc. This is why you need to be careful when buying popular branded items online. It would be better to choose a reputed seller and check reviews and ratings to ensure that you are getting genuine items and not fake, knock-offs, counterfeit or pirated products.