The New Generation of Counterfeits – Harder to Detect
As we wrote recently, the fashion industry is stepping up its fight against counterfeiting. More legal action is being taken and more awards are being granted by the courts for the counterfeiting of high end brands. However, it is still not enough and counterfeiting is a continuing and growing problem. Recently, Elizabeth Holmes wrote a great piece in the Wall Street Journal documenting another side of this ever increasing problem
In the article, she talks about how in addition to pursuing legal action to shut down counterfeiters, companies are turning more and more to technology to differentiate their products from the counterfeits.
The new generation of counterfeit fashion goods offers much more convincing facsimiles of actual products.The goods are made of high-quality materials, with zippers and grommets boasting the brand name (even spelled correctly), and are stamped with what appears to be the proper manufacturing location and date. They're fooling even the savviest shoppers, especially online, where much of this counterfeiting occurs.
Manufacturers are starting to push back. In addition to shutting down websites, which has been pretty ineffectual, with new sites popping up as quickly as the old ones are shut down, more brands are turning to authentication devices in their merchandise. This includes new labeling technology, DNA markers in the products or labels, including specific product numbering for each part in every product and embedding hidden security devices into their products.
Applied DNA Sciences’ anti-counterfeiting technology was specifically mentioned in the WSJ article as one of the technologies able to detect counterfeit luxury goods. Our method embeds the botanical DNA markers into fibers that can then be sewn into a garment. These proprietary DNA markers which cannot be copied, can assist in the fight against counterfeited products.
Time will tell how effective the different technologies are, but trying to keep one step ahead of the counterfeiters is a never ending job.