It's very surprising where these parts end up. A spokesman for the U.S. Missile Defense Agency recently talked about how counterfeits from Vision Tech ended up in its supply chain. As part of the investigation, the government got a list of customers from MVP and Vision Tech. The MDA spokesman said the Vision Tech list of domestic customers included a broad swath of the industry. More detail in an upcoming blog post.
It is good that the govt went right uoto the source of the counterfeit production. But it will also be interesting to know how the remaining supply chain got fooled by these counterfeiters - was it knowlngly or unknowingly.
Without some involvement at each link in the supply chain it is not pssoible for such parts to reach at leat the military and space related products
If the forged certification paperwork cannot be detected then how can one detect the part to be a counterfeit?
@TaimoorZ - Apparently so....and I am sure the counterfeiters didn't target vacuum clearner as end products either - that probably just happens to be where the technology ended up. I guess all they really need to know id that someone is willing to buy the product from them.
@taimoor: I definitely agree that the penalties aren't severe in this case, particularly in view of the mission-critical nature of military and aerospace. My guess is part of this has to do with plea ageements. Anecdotally -- and I hear a lot of this stuff second hand -- very few of these cases are even prosecuted because they are so difficult to prove. There are still many gaps between catching these folks and putting them away. The fact that this case started with vacuum cleaners and escalated to mil/aero is a real testament to the thinking behind this case--really, really well done. It's probably the exception, though.
"At least the government went after these folks and some justice has been done."
@Barbara: I think the punishment should be enough so it acts as a deterrent to other people. The potential damage caused by counterfeiting could have been very severe since it involves the military and that has to be taken into account when the penalty is being decided.
Good question, Bolaji! No, they didn't cite any other cases. However, the DOJ press release on at least on of these cases said that it was part of what seemed to be a broader effort - something called "Operation Chain Reaction." More on that in an upcoming blog . . .
It seems hard to imagine that it is worth the effort to counterfeit a part that goes into a vacuum cleaner, but apparently it is. It also is interesting that it was complaints about a relatively simple appliance that lead to the discovery, rather than a more complex circuit card assembly, for instance.
EBN Dialogue enables and encourages you to participate in live chats with notable leaders and luminaries. Not only editors and journalists, but the entire EBN community is able to comment and ask questions. Listed below are upcoming and archived chats.
Thailand Stages a Comeback Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Microsoft Surface: Potential Winners & Losers What are the implications for the electronics industry supply chain of Microsoft Corp.'s decision to launch its own tablet PC? Join industry veteran and EE Times' systems and OEM expert Rick Merritt on Tuesday, July 3, at 12:00 pm EDT for a Live Chat on this subject.
Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Peter Drucker famously said "Trying to predict the future is like trying to drive down a country road at night with no lights while looking out the back window." Yet in the razor's-edge world of electronics—with a lean supply chain and just-in-time demands—the need to know the future is vital.
While no one really can accurately predict the future, we can take guidance from another Drucker saying which is the best way to predict the future is to create it.
You've heard the saying "the No. 1 supply chain risk is your people." That hasn't always been the case. But today's complex global supply chain requires a new type of multitalented employee. It's one who understands, finance, marketing, economics, is savvy with technology, graceful with relationships and can think analytically.
Where are these people? Are universities properly preparing the next generation supply chain professionals? How do train your existing workforce for these new, demanding positions?
Brian Fuller, editor-in-chief of EBN, will lead a 60-minute Avnet Velocity panel discussion that will ask and answer these and other questions swirling around today's supply-chain talent challenges.