Manager, IP Policy and Programs, Global Innovation Policy Center (GIPC), U.S. Chamber of Commerce
April 18, 2023
Amazon recently published its third annual Brand Protection Report, detailing the company's substantial investment in preventing the sale of counterfeit products by bad actors on its online marketplace. Additionally, the report emphasizes the company's commitment to protecting customers by ensuring that all goods sold on its platform are safe and authentic.
Why it matters: Trust and authenticity are critical components of the shopping experience. However, unscrupulous individuals across the globe use various channels, including online marketplaces, to sell counterfeit goods to unsuspecting shoppers. As a result, counterfeit and pirated products account for almost 3% of global trade, nearly $464 billion. To combat this threat, Amazon has developed four key brand protection strategies to preserve customer trust and safeguard rightsholders' intellectual property.
- Proactive Controls: Amazon has made significant investments in establishing robust seller verification procedures to prevent bad actors from ever listing fakes for sale in the first place.
- Tools to Protect Brands: Amazon’s Brand Registry allows brand owners to quickly report suspected infringements and utilizes machine learning to continuously scan for fakes on its marketplace.
- Bad Actor Accountability: The retailer’s Counterfeit Crimes Unit works closely with customs agencies and law enforcement to share information to increase counterfeit seizures and track down bad actors.
- Consumer Protection and Education: Arming consumers with tips and tricks to spot fake goods online is a priority for Amazon and the U.S. Chamber, and in partnership with U.S. Customs and Border Protection, we have collectively reached millions of American consumers in recent years with our safe online shopping message.
Big Investments, Big Results: Amazon has invested over $1 billion in implementing its brand protection strategies. The company has over 15,000 employees dedicated to preventing fraud and counterfeit goods and leverages advanced machine learning for continuous seller verification and counterfeit detection. The Counterfeit Crimes Unit has also made significant progress in identifying, seizing, and disposing of over 6 million counterfeit items in 2022. Additionally, Amazon has sued or referred over 1,300 criminals for investigation across the globe.
Other Key Highlights include:
- Proactive controls found more than 99% of blocked or removed listings before a brand ever had to find and report it. These listings were suspected of being fraudulent, infringing, counterfeit, or at risk of other forms of abuse.
- Amazon stopped over 800,000 attempts by bad actors to create new selling accounts, a decrease from over 2.5 million attempts the prior year.
- The number of valid notices of infringement submitted by brands in Amazon’s Brand Registry has decreased by more than 35% since 2021.
- The collaborative Shop Smart consumer awareness campaign with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and U.S. Customs and Border Protection, which raises awareness of the prevalence and dangers of counterfeit goods, has reached over 70 million American consumers in recent years.
Read the full report here.