Is Amazon Doing Enough to Combat Counterfeit Product Sales?

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Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) offers more than 350 million products to its customers. Of that total, some 12.23 million are sold directly by Amazon, while the rest are sold by the company’s Marketplace sellers.

According to a recent report from counterfeit awareness and consumer advocate site The Counterfeit Report, Amazon’s 2-million unvetted Marketplace account holders now generate 40% of Amazon’s business, shipping counterfeit products that are never inspected by Amazon.

These counterfeit products often appear right next to authentic items, conveying Amazon’s implied endorsement and creating the illusion they are from Amazon itself. Business Wire reported that Amazon Marketplace Sellers sold more than 2 billion items worldwide.

The Counterfeit Report claims that it has sent 32,626 notices of infringing items to Amazon and that the company claims the items have been removed from the company’s website. Still, The Counterfeit Report says, many items remained listed even after repeated complaints.

In some cases, if a listing was removed from Amazon’s U.S. website (Amazon.com), the same listing with the exact same Amazon identification number could be found on Amazon’s U.K. website (Amazon.co.uk) or at other global Amazon websites.

Neither does Amazon notify consumers that they may have received a dangerous or potentially deadly counterfeit product. Consumers would then be entitled to a refund.

According to The Counterfeit Report, counterfeiting costs U.S. manufacturers more than $250 billion, costs U.S. workers more than 750,000 jobs and “supports terrorists, organized crime, and other criminals.”