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Phoney Products on the Rise Thanks to Popularity of E-Commerce

19 March 2019 - 12:42 by David Aiken

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The Organisation for Economic Cooperation has published statistics that show a worrying increase in the number of knock-off items being imported to European nations, according to the Telegraph.

An estimated seven per cent of products shipped to the continent from overseas were found to not be genuine. This is an increase from the five per cent penetration rate seen in 2015 and means that each year this market generates the equivalent of around £380 billion.

Experts believe that 3.3 per cent of all trade on a global scale can be attributed to the production and sale of counterfeit goods, which is clearly a concern for consumers who want to carry out shopping online and secure genuine items from the outlets they use.

While fashion items are amongst the most commonly copied products, there is also a huge market for fake toys, make-up and even equipment designed for use in medical settings.

Regulators are worried that the risks associated with fake goods go beyond merely doing damage to the genuine brands that are being imitated. They could also pose a threat for the health and safety of the people who are duped into buying them.

The internet has made it easy for people to buy products from other parts of the world, and this also means that it is simpler for scammers to hawk phoney items without consumers being aware until it is too late.

There is no sign of the growth of online shopping abating any time soon, so it is up to regulators and governments to do more to crack down on the importing of fake goods. Protecting consumers by educating them about how to look out for such products is also a sensible step that authorities can take.