To counterfeit simply refers to imitating something. Therefore if something is counterfeit, it means that it is a fake replica of the genuine or real product. The global market is currently full of counterfeit goods and to a far extends counterfeit currency is the most affected. In addition, counterfeit in is also experienced in documents forgery, clothing, pharmaceuticals, electronics, software, movies and many other commodities.
Counterfeit goods usually have fake company logos and brands; this results in patent infringement and trademark infringement. Such products have low prices, low value and to some extent, they contain toxic substances.
Most of the products that have been heavily affected by counterfeiting acts are money and consumer goods. Counterfeiting of money is a serious crime that is aggressively attacked by most government worldwide with exception of Western Sahara. Paper money is a common currency item that is mostly affected. Counterfeit to goods is also another crime that most countries condone. Not only do counterfeit occur on money and consumer goods but also on documents. Document forgery is a counterfeit act that infringes intellectual property rights.
Globalization of the economy has had a great impact on the widespread counterfeiting crimes. In a broad perspective, counterfeiting of consumer goods has escalated to higher levels in the global market. This has even made it harder for the consumers to identify best and genuine products which give them utility. For instance, the electronic products have really received high counterfeiting practices as compared to other consumer goods.
The effects of product counterfeiting are realizable effect on organization. Such effects includes loss of revenue loss for companies, drastic drop in prices of goods, use of poor quality in products and to the larger extent leads to organization failure. Money counterfeit can trigger inflation and fall in currency value and confidence.
The massive effects of counterfeiting have with time led to development of anti-counterfeiting crime measures that have reduced the practice on a significant scale. The crime is punishable in almost every country and perpetrators may sometimes be extradited not to move from their member countries. Companies that deal in counterfeit products are illegal in all aspect. In the case of an individual being in possession of counterfeit goods; he/she is liable for imprisonment. In a mid to take counterfeit to zero level, International police organization (Interpol) is charged with the responsibility to fight counterfeit. This has been a great development in global anti-counterfeiting crimes.
The development of anti-counterfeiting can be traced from the white dollar crime that dates back the civil war during which the U.S currency was believed to be counterfeit. Since then, counterfeiting has been advancing with the effort of combat it being placed into play. Anti-counterfeiting efforts that have been adopted include setting up of quality inspection bodies and machines hat detect counterfeit products and money.