Investor's wiki

Brand Piracy

Brand Piracy

What Is Brand Piracy?

Brand piracy happens when a product includes a name or logo like another notable brand or product. Common among products are effortlessly repeated, and consumers will frequently confuse a counterfeit product with the original brand name.

Brand piracy happens in light of the fact that companies endeavor to take market share from their more well known competitors. Brand piracy is unlawful on the grounds that the practice encroaches on trademark laws.

Grasping Brand Piracy

Companies that commit brand piracy design their products to look like the original products of different companies to delude consumers and gain market share. Brand piracy comes in many forms and can be challenging to control.

Brand piracy falls under the umbrella of brand abuse, a term that alludes to an outside party encroaching on a brand's intellectual property to exploit its very much regarded reputation.

The impact of brand piracy can be extreme. Companies spend years and a large number of dollars building and enthusiastically protecting their brand names. The people who commit brand piracy try to capitalize on this accomplishment by taking the efforts of recognized brands. Knockoffs can likewise dissolve and stain the reputation of a brand name among customers and partners in light of the fact that pilfered goods are regularly inferior and of less expensive quality. Notable and laid out brands can experience the ill effects of a continuous drop in sales, and the costs engaged with going to deluded customers and fighting counterfeits can likewise be high.

Then again, brand protection alludes to the method involved with protecting the intellectual property of companies against counterfeiters, copyright piracy, and different types of infringements.

According to data delivered in 2017 by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development ("OECD") on counterfeiting and international trade, the negative impacts of counterfeiting and piracy are projected to drain $4.2 trillion from the global economy and put 5.4 million authentic positions at risk by 2022.

Types of Brand Piracy

There are three fundamental categories of brand piracy: outright piracy, reverse engineering, and counterfeiting:

  • Outright piracy: Here, a product is exactly equivalent to the brand name and uses a similar trademark. Dissimilar to the original, the trademark is false.
  • Reverse engineering: In this type of piracy, the product's construction and composition are copied, manufactured, and afterward sold on the market, frequently at exceptionally low prices. This happens principally in the electronics industry.
  • Counterfeiting: This is one of the most common types of brand piracy. In this case, a counterfeit product mimics the product from a valid brand, however it's made informally and by outer sources, and the quality is altered even however a similar logo and trademark are on the label. "Knockoffs" are made without permission from the valid brand to trick customers.

Brand Piracy and the Law

Brand piracy and counterfeit merchandise are unlawful and a federal offense, as they are an infringement on trademark laws. There are laws in place that apply to both the counterfeiter and the people who purposely sell any counterfeit merchandise. The Trademark Counterfeiting Act of 1984 lays out that, under federal law, any individual who intentionally appropriates, wholesales, or sells counterfeit merchandise has to deal with substantial damages:

  • Detainment for the primary offense as long as 10 years and as long as 20 years for repeat guilty parties.
  • Fines up to $15.0 million for corporations and $5.0 million for individuals who are repeat guilty parties.
  • Seizure and destruction of counterfeit merchandise the wholesaler or distributor currently possesses.
  • Civil lawsuits brought by the owner of the trademark under federal trademark law to recover from damages, profit losses, lawyers' fees, and get other injunctive relief.

For what reason Do Consumers Buy Pirated Goods?

Numerous consumers accept that buying pilfered goods is harmless. In fact, the reverse is true. Piracy is against the law and can dissolve the profits of major companies and their brand names. So how could do consumers buy them?

A few consumers like the possibility of a brand name yet don't have any desire to pay the high cost for the genuine product. Different consumers don't realize they are buying a pilfered product. At times, just an expert can recognize a pilfered product from the real thing.

Brand piracy makes the market be overwhelmed with less expensive goods. The blast of internet business during the COVID-19 pandemic has made a perfect market channel for counterfeit goods.

Fighting Brand Piracy

The best method for recognizing a pilfered decent is to inspect the product's bundling, quality, and construction. A few merchants might renounce charging sales tax as an incentive for consumers to purchase their goods. Along these lines, specialists recommend making purchases at authorized retailers.

There are numerous ways that individuals can assist with fighting brand piracy. Consumers who have discovered an online retailer selling pilfered goods, or have bought counterfeit products over the Internet, can report the associated goods and merchants to one with these U.S. Government agencies responsible for upholding intellectual property laws:

  • The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission
  • The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
  • The Office of Intellectual Property Rights (OIPR)
  • The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)
  • The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP)
  • The National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center (IPR Center)

On Aug. 13, 2012, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) announced that any copyright owner might download and utilize the FBI Anti-Piracy Warning Seal. Already, the utilization of the seal was limited to individuals from five diversion and software industry associations that had gone into formal agreements with the FBI. Presently the seal can be connected and utilized on all copyright content, including personal sites, without disregarding federal law. Copyrighted works can incorporate movies, sound recordings, electronic media, software, books, photos, and so on. The purpose of the counter piracy warning seal is to help media users to remember the serious consequences of pilfering copyrighted works.

The most effective method to Protect Your Brand

There are a number of preventive measures that brands can take to try not to be a casualty of brand piracy.

Getting a patent to register your intellectual property ought to be the initial step for protecting your brand. You can register a trademark for your brand name and any logo, mottos, or designs associated with your brand by presenting an application with the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). It's likewise highly recommendable to remember an intellectual property clause for your terms and conditions.

Story advantage of intellectual property management software that assists you with following trademarks, copyrights, patents, and other intellectual property. This software scours the internet for potential coordinates with your brand and reports back the outcomes.

Building a strong social media presence can assist your business with laying out a bona fide and genuine brand. There are social media analytics devices that can assist you with following your social presence on various platforms and distinguish any suspicious activity. By monitoring and investigating your social media you can distinguish possible infringements on your intellectual property.

At long last, you can assist your customers with recognizing the differences between your products and expected counterfeits. Likewise, by making awareness of the extreme effects that brand piracy can have on a genuine brand, your customers will be less inclined to buy counterfeit products.

Pilfered Goods

There are numerous instances of pilfered brands including clothing, satchels, electronics, and toys. Even ordinary things like batteries and spotlights are counterfeited by manufacturers. Luxury purse producers, like Herm\u00e8s, Burberry, and Coach, are in many cases the casualties of piracy. Since there is a high demand for these luxury brand names, counterfeiters will frequently create less expensive satchels and wallets that can be handily confused with the original, which is the whole thought.


  • Brand piracy is a form of brand abuse, a term that alludes to an outside party encroaching on a brand's intellectual property to exploit its reputation.
  • Companies use piracy to take market share from competitors.
  • Brand protection alludes to the method involved with protecting the intellectual property of companies against counterfeiters, copyright piracy, and different types of infringements.
  • Brand piracy is unlawful in light of the fact that the practice encroaches on trademark laws.
  • Brand piracy happens when a company copies a notable brand somehow or another and highlights a similar name or logo.


Are Pirated Goods the Same as Counterfeit Goods?

Technically talking, "pilfered" alludes to goods (generally films, music, books, or other copyrighted works) that are utilized, copied, distributed, or sold without permission from the copyright owner. "Counterfeit" alludes to goods manufactured to seem to be the real thing and sold thusly; all in all, fake goods.

What Industries Experience the Most Piracy?

According to a 2029 study by Statista, the following are the industries more impacted by counterfeiting and brand piracy: footwear and dress (counting cowhide goods), electrical devices and equipment, watches, medical equipment, scents and cosmetics, toys, jewelry, and drug products.

What Are the Effects of Brand Piracy?

For the original brands and companies, the effects of brand piracy can annihilate. These incorporate, among others, the loss of sales and revenue (that can arrive at billions of dollars relying upon the brand) and the damage to the reputation. The costs engaged with monitoring and fighting counterfeits can likewise be high. Brand piracy might in fact bring about damage to individuals' wellbeing due to the poor quality of the products utilized or the manufacturing system.