Friday, February 22, 2008

Knocking Off Chips

Even 'though manufacturing integrated circuits (ICs) is one of the most costly and complex processes known to man ... chips are still susceptible to counterfeiting. Sometimes devices are painstakingly reverse engineered, other times these are simply cheap devices re-marked to make them look like expensive ones.

EU and U.S. senior officials said on Friday they would crack down on counterfeiting of computer components after they seized over 360,000 fake items in just two weeks in a joint operation at the end of last year. ICs and computer components of over 40 trademarks including Intel, Cisco and Philips, worth more than $1.3 billion, were seized during the operation, the officials said.

All kinds of devices are affected - military spec, consumer electronics, end-of-life products, simple components, complex ICs, assemblies (like Network Interface Cards), and devices (such as phones and routers).

SEMI, the Semiconductor Industry's standards body is developing a global standard to detect and deter counterfeit product. Contact us to find out more about how this will work.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

The Latest Hall of Shame

The German Plagiarius Awards call attention to the most flagrant fakes product imitations and raise awareness about the dangers of piracy. In addition to look-a-likes of chairs and salt & pepper shakers, were medical devices, pens, children's toys, and faucets with 200% too much lead in them. This is a wake-up call to those manufacturers who think they're too small, or their products are too complex, to attract counterfeiters.

Perhaps the US Chamber of Commerce, as part of its CACP activities, should do the same?