In its ongoing efforts to prevent fraud on its site, on Tuesday (Oct. 1) Amazon announced a new program to help sellers make sure their products won’t be copied or counterfeited, according to reports.
Dubbed the Intellectual Property Accelerator, it helps small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) connect with law firms that deal with intellectual property (IP) and trademarks. Participating sellers will get discounts from the firms, and when they file for trademarks, they will be able to use Amazon’s fraud prevention tools.
Amazon’s VP of Customer trust and Partner Support Dharmesh Mehta said that around 99.99 percent of what shows up on the site is not counterfeit, but Amazon wants to raise that number even higher.
“On one end, I can look at that and say the vast majority of what customers are encountering are genuine, authentic selections,” Mehta said. “On the flip side, we’re not going to be happy until it’s 100 percent and there’s zero counterfeit.”
Mehta said Amazon has an active initiative called Project Zero to assist with that very goal. The program includes tools that continuously scan the site and get rid of what are deemed to be counterfeit items. It also allows sellers to get rid of bogus items themselves, as well as to parse out serial numbers to ensure authenticity.
Mehta said the system works well; for every item removed by a seller, Amazon removes 400 more.
“Protecting brands, preventing counterfeit or other infringing products from being in our stores is critical to having a trustworthy shopping experience,” he said.
Amazon’s commitment to stopping counterfeiters and fakers has been continuously amping up, and in June the company teamed up with Nite Ize, a maker of LED products and phone accessories, to file a lawsuit against 11 businesses and individuals accused of selling counterfeit items from the store.