Mercedes-Benz sees rise in counterfeits traded online

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Together with authorities, the car manufacturer Mercedes‑Benz removed around 1.6 million counterfeit products from circulation last year. However, the company is encountering much more offers for counterfeit products on social media and online platforms than before.

With more than 620 raids last year, authorities removed over 1.6 million counterfeit Mercedes‑Benz products from circulation. This was recently disclosed by the Stuttgart‑based group. Although this is a lower figure than in the previous year (2021: around 1.9 million counterfeits seized), the number of counterfeit products offered online has increased significantly, the company says. While around 126,000 counterfeits were removed from the Internet in 2021, Mercedes‑Benz Group reports a total of around 155,000 removed offers for 2022, an increase of around 23 percent.

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The well‑known car manufacturer also reports that counterfeiters are taking advantage of anonymity on the Internet, as well as of the decentralized structure of online marketplaces. The group’s brand protection team is responding to the rise in counterfeiting on the Web by expanding its online activities. The company also works with customs and law enforcement agencies to combat the trade in counterfeits. And training events and information materials are aimed at raising awareness of counterfeiting among customs authorities and service providers, for example, and supporting them in the fight against counterfeit products.

//„The trade in counterfeit products via online platforms and social media has also increased sharply in the last year. Our brand protectors focus on safety-relevant counterfeits, because they endanger people. However, we are also keeping an eye on the counterfeiting industry’s growing business model for digital goods. In 2022, a total of more than 155,000 counterfeit product listings were removed from online platforms.“
Florian Adt, COO & General Counsel at Mercedes-Benz Intellectual Property GmbH & Co. KG

According to Mercedes‑Benz, products particularly affected by counterfeiting include brake discs, wheels, and body and steering parts. These could also pose a risk to road users, the company says, as the quality of counterfeit products would be usually poor and would not meet the minimum legal requirements for safety.

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