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Huge quantities of fake leathers. Courtesy of South Tyneside Trading Standards

 

With 10% of global trade estimated to be in counterfeit goods, Intellectual Property crime – which includes counterfeit goods – is seriously big business, reports Carli Ann Smith.

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Often found for sale online and at markets, criminals selling counterfeit goods are generally aware of the consequences of their actions, and for this reason purposefully try to stay under the radar and not raise suspicions of law enforcement or members of the public.

The internet is a major facilitator of IP crime – social media offers a great platform for showcasing the ‘fake’ goods on sale. Previously, the agencies focused on online auctions and websites, but recently there has been a significant shift to social media.

As well as the obvious goods such as alcohol, cigarettes and tobacco proving popular for the counterfeiters, riding gear and motorcycle parts have been targeted by some trying to make quick cash. Whether it’s a brand new helmet that you’re buying online, or a riding jacket that you’ve found for a bargain price at a local market – beware, as it might not be what it claims.

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