New York-based Seth Porges (pictured) has entered what he calls the secretive world of counterfeit printer ink and found out how one printer OEM is using raids to fight back.
In his article in Forbes magazine he describes how within the “deep bowels of companies like HP, an elite squad composed largely of former law enforcement personnel is currently hard at work planning a series of covert raids around the world.”
“Their target: Counterfeit printer ink and toner cartridges. According to the Imaging Supplies Coalition, the annual market for counterfeit printer cartridges adds up to roughly $3.5 billion in market value. To combat this issue, manufacturers and other interested parties extensively with law enforcement around the world to track and raid these printer pirates.”
According to Porges spoke with Andy Binder, HP’s Vice President & General Manager of Office Supplies and Solutions. “Counterfeiting in the supplies business happens where customers buy something,” says Binder, “usually because of it’s using the HP trademark or logos and things like that—and they think they’re buying genuine HP supplies, and they’re getting something else inside the box.”
According to Binder the biggest concern with counterfeiting is with printer supplies. “I would say about 85 percent of the problem is on the toner side of the business, and about 15 percent is on the ink side of the business.”
RT Media has noted that in years past counterfeit cartridges were remanufactured by aftermarket companies in many countries. Today, however, many are newbuilt cartridges originating in China sold knowingly or unknowingly to distributors in Middle Eastern countries. From there they allegedly fund criminal activities including terrorist activities and are sold worldwide to unknowing consumers, often online.
You can read Porges’ full article here.