Creating an effective anti-counterfeiting strategy
Produced in partnership with Boyes Turner LLP
Creating an effective anti-counterfeiting strategy

The following IP practice note produced in partnership with Boyes Turner LLP provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Creating an effective anti-counterfeiting strategy
  • Understanding the problem
  • Key issues to consider when formulating a strategy
  • Are the brand owner’s IP rights strong enough to form the basis of effective action?
  • Budget
  • Priorities
  • Putting in place a streamlined process and a designated team
  • Enforcing anti-counterfeiting strategy
  • Streamlining enforcement action
  • Choosing appropriate enforcement action
  • More...

Anti-counterfeiting work is an area in which costs can quickly spiral out of control and success can be difficult to measure. In tough economic times, justifying the resources being spent on anti-counterfeiting measures can be a challenge. However, having a clear strategy with well-defined priorities, enforcement preferences and a designated team will result in a more streamlined and hence cost-effective approach. For further information about anti-counterfeiting, see Practice Note: Anti-counterfeiting.

Any effective anti-counterfeiting strategy will include:

  1. an initial assessment of the extent of the problem and the strength of existing IP rights

  2. a clear budget approved at the appropriate level within the business

  3. a list of priorities

  4. a preferred plan of action in terms of enforcement strategies

  5. a designated team with clear responsibilities and reporting lines, and

  6. a regular review process in order to measure success

Understanding the problem

The first step in any anti-counterfeiting strategy is to assess the level of the problem and identify trends.

Information can be gained from:

  1. in-house personnel who have close involvement with the market place, including customer services staff who handle consumer complaints

  2. external investigators tasked with assessing the level of counterfeit products in particular market places (both online and in stores) and making test purchases

  3. agencies such as the Chartered Trading Standards Institute (also known as ‘Trading Standards’) and HMRC

Key information includes:

  1. the territories which are most affected—key territories need

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