Amazon and BMW achieve court success

In their first civil lawsuit of its kind in Spain, internet giant Amazon and the BMW Group have taken action against several dealers of counterfeit car parts and accessories. The counterfeit products had apparently been uncovered with the help of artificial intelligence.

The European Union Trademark Court in Alicante, Spain, has ordered four people to pay damages for infringing the registered trademarks of the BMW Group and the regulations of e commerce giant Amazon. In addition, they have to stop selling their counterfeit products throughout the EU. Information on the case was released by Amazon in February. The BMW Group had filed the lawsuit in cooperation with Amazon’s Counterfeit Crime Unit (CCU).

//“This judgement is a significant win. By partnering with brand owners like BMW Group, we can successfully shut down counterfeiters and stop fake items from ever reaching our customers or being sold elsewhere in the supply chain”

Kebharu Smith, Director of Amazon’s Counterfeit Crime Unit (CCU)

According to Amazon, the counterfeit products included valve flaps, emblems, and key fobs. Initially, Amazon had noticed the offers for suspected counterfeit products when checking the respective stores – apparently with the help of machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI). According to a recent report, Amazon had significantly increased the use of such AI functions last year, along with other brand protection activities. The BMW Group eventually confirmed that the detected listings were counterfeits. Together with Amazon’s CCU, BMW then filed the civil lawsuit after all offers had been blocked, says Amazon.

Cooperation between online marketplaces and brand owners appears to be becoming increasingly essential when it comes to taking effective action against counterfeiting: German newspaper Handelsblatt reports that the sale of counterfeits on the internet has increased dramatically, and Amazon alone reportedly removes around six million suspected counterfeits from its platform every year.

Sources: Amazon, Handelsblatt

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