Computer Crime Research Center


ICC reports lead the way on gathering C&P intelligence

Date: August 31, 2006
Source: Computer Crime Research Center

As part of its Business Action to Stop Counterfeiting and Piracy (BASCAP) project, the
International Chamber of Commerce has launched a unique tracking system to produce a series of daily and monthly reports on intellectual property right crimes.

"The BASCAP reports are extremely useful to our anti-piracy efforts," said David Benjamin, Senior Vice President for Anti-Piracy at Universal Music. "They help us to identify problems, track trends, set priorities and provide solid statistics."

Tracking incidents of counterfeiting and piracy has proven extremely challenging as these illegal activities usually take place without the knowledge of the governments and corporations attempting to stop them. Experts from organizations such as Interpol and the Organization of Economic Co-operation and Development have been frustrated in their attempts to assess the impact on the global economy. Most governments can only rely on seizures of counterfeit goods at national borders to estimate the magnitude of traffic in these illegal products. For this reason, the World Intellectual Property Organization has said that good statistics are critical to motivating government action and that the private sector must play a leading role.

To this end, BASCAP is gathering intelligence on reported incidents, brands involved, country locations and seizure values. The information is brought together from publicly available sources in an attempt to capture the global extent of counterfeiting and piracy.

"Counterfeiters do not file annual reports, so while these reports are only a first step, they are an important advancement towards quantifying this black market activity," said ICC Secretary General Guy Sebban.

Intelligence gathered to date shows that counterfeiters are implementing increasingly effective business strategies with about 25% setting up home operations to avoid detection and facilitate mail order, manufacturing, and product distribution. According to Glen Gieschen, BASCAP
consultant for counterfeit intelligence, mobile operations are also of concern as street vendors, weekend flea markets, auctions, and boot sales account for nearly one-fifth of all sales of black market goods.

Mr Gieschen added that the Internet is now a well-established marketing tool, representing 14% of all counterfeiting activity. The daily BASCAP Counterfeiting and Piracy Intelligence Reports are available to subscribers at no cost, with the cumulative reports and online tools available on the BASCAP website. They include a monthly summary of information, listing and comparing incidents between sectors, and a Facts &Figures section summarizing anti-counterfeiting efforts according to brands counterfeited, brand protection strategies, industry reports and country-specific data. The first semi-annual report shows that 764 incidents of intellectual property theft valued at US$699.3 million have been registered so far this year.

The Intelligence Reports website also offers visitors the opportunity to report discoveries of counterfeiting and piracy activity. The information is then passed to the appropriate company or government to facilitate their enforcement activities.
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