In the electronics industry and across the supply chain, counterfeit components are a hot topic as organizations struggle to make sure the components they are using as they manufacture electronic devices are the real deal. The problem of counterfeiting, though, has proven ubiquitous, and counterfeit electronic gadgets have become a reality.
A 2013 Anti-Counterfeit Study commissioned by Canon USA found that, though the reality of counterfeit goods is high, consumer awareness remains low. “Most American consumers are unaware of the full risks associated with these potentially dangerous devices,” Chuck Westfall, technical adviser in Canon USA's professional engineering and solutions division, said in a press release. “Four in ten of the U.S. consumers surveyed don't know counterfeit consumer electronics can harm them, and this lack of awareness leads to what Canon calls a 'Confidence Trap.'”
Designer goods, such as handbags or clothes, are well known for being potentially faked, but users are less aware of the same problem with their cameras, PCs, and other electronics purchases. High-tech products were well represented on a USA Today list of most counterfeited products in the US. Computers and accessories and consumer electronics accounted for 11% of seized goods, USA Today found. Last year, US officials seized $145 million of counterfeit consumer electronics entering the country, according to the Department of Homeland Security.
The infographic below summarizes the results of the Canon USA survey. Let's talk about the role that electronics OEMs, distributors, and contract manufacturers should be taking in addressing the issue of counterfeit electronic goods.
— Hailey Lynne McKeefry, Editor in Chief, EBN