Counterfeit Cops

IP: A funny IPR-enforcement-related story from New Scientist (sorry, subscriber-only link):

Just before delegates (to the 28 May ‘Global Congress on Combating Counterfeiting’) left Brussels to ponder their future anti-counterfeiting measures, a salutary tale started doing the rounds.

The WCO (World Customs Organization) produces a CD database of the codes needed to identify goods by type so that local customs authorities can collect the appropriate duties. The discs sell for EUR 1000 apiece, but WCO investigators have found that staff at some border posts, which are supposedly the front line in counterfeit detection, are not using the official CDs. Instead – you’ve guessed it – they are buying cut-price pirated copies, complete with crudely photocopied, plainly fake covers and sleeve notes.

Physician, heal thyself!

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