“Counterfeiting or brand piracy is the largest criminal enterprise globally. The sales of counterfeit and pirated goods total $1.7 trillion per year, which is more than drugs and human trafficking.”, stated Forbes in 2018. This was before the COVID-19 pandemic. The score has drastically increased since then.
In the music industry alone, brand piracy costs $4.6 Billion in revenue losses. This means that out of every 10 sold CDs, 7 of them are pirated.
The Indian Media and Entertainment (M&E) Industry loses around ₹22,000 crores of revenue and 60,000 jobs each year to digital piracy.
Brand piracy happens at an alarming scale globally.
What is Brand Piracy?
Brand Piracy is the practice of copying or imitating the name or logo of another well-known brand or product. It is illegal since it violates the Intellectual Property Rights of the rightsholder. The more successful a brand, product, or service is, the more likely it is to be a victim of brand piracy.
Types of Brand Piracy:
Generally, brand piracy falls into three categories: Counterfeiting, Outright Piracy, and Reverse Engineering.
Counterfeiting occurs when the quality of a product is altered but the trademark is identical to the original product. This is the worst type of brand piracy.
Outright Piracy is when a product is in the same form and uses an identical but forged trademark.
Reverse Engineering is when the original product is copied and sold at very low prices under the original brand name. It is quite common in the electronics industry.
Consequences of Brand Piracy:
Brand piracy negatively impacts the profitability and reliability of businesses and their products/services.
- Loss of Sales: Brands suffer a huge loss of sales and revenue in billions of dollars.
- Reputation at Risk: Besides monetary loss, it also causes reputational damage to the products and services – hence, the company.
- Lack of Trustworthiness: They face a loss of trust between business partners, stakeholders, and consumers alike.
- Diverted Focus: Dealing with the consequences of counterfeiters make brands shift their focus from improving products and services. Hence, creativity and technology pay the price.
Protecting Your Brand Against Brand Piracy:
Claim ownership of the products and services designed by your company.
Register your brands, designs, products and patents with associated intellectual properties under Copyright or Patent or Trademark. Note that they must be registered in each country where your company has its footprint.
Monitor the Online Space for Infringements
Monitor the digital space using social listening tools to detect any instances of brand abuse or infringement.
Protect your brand right on social media and eCommerce sites
Social media and eCommerce sites have clearly-articulated regulations on defending the rights of copyright owners. Proactively, connect with these sites and platforms to bring down any violations.
Use Legal Help
Use the law of the land and legislation to enforce your brand, patent, and copyright. Hire a competent legal team to help you maintain the credibility and trustworthiness of your brand in the online space.
Preventing brand piracy takes time, effort, and a special set of capabilities both technical and legal; especially when you do not know your adversary. That is why you should consider taking help from an organization that is competent at tracking everything down and enforcing brand rights.
India’s First Online Antipiracy Company could be Your Best Bet
We at AiPlex are not only pioneers in providing anti-piracy solutions to the Content creation network (Film Production Houses, OTT Platforms, Broadcasters, E-Learning & Software companies) in India but have also stood the test of time by protecting the brand reputation of some of the top Edtech, Crypto, Fintech, eCommerce, and Hospitality brands in India for more than a decade. We understand the piracy ecosystem and can disrupt it like no other – thanks to our innovative techno-legal approach.
Our tie-up with payment gateways, our legal expertise, connection with ISPs, and coordination with enforcement agencies ensure that you focus on building your business and while AiPlex protects your brand reputation in the online space. Drop us a line to know more.