It is estimated that counterfeiting is a $600 billion a year problem that has grown over 10,000 percent in the past two decades. In the U.S. alone, counterfeiting costs businesses $200 billion to $250 billion annually. Counterfeiters are skilled at profiting off of another companies marketing efforts; and the openness of the Internet makes selling fraudulent products online easy. Finding them can be difficult and time consuming. According to U.S. Customs, the top 10 counterfeited products are:

  1. Electronics
  2. Shoes
  3. Pharmaceuticals
  4. CDs and DVDs
  5. Clothing
  6. Perfume
  7. Watches
  8. Cigarettes
  9. Computer hardware
  10. Toys and games

BrightPlanet Case Study: Protection and Anti-Counterfeiting Problem


A Fortune 100 company in a high-margin industry was hemorrhaging potential profits to overseas counterfeiters. These counterfeiters advertised brand name products at a fraction of the retail price on trade boards, fly-by-night websites, message boards, and social media.

The company’s traditional strategy included hiring an external brand protection firm; however, this solution wasn’t scalable to the wide scope of the Internet, where legitimate profits were unknowingly being siphoned off by fraudulent websites.

BrightPlanet Solution:

BrightPlanet was hired to implement a scalable process to automatically monitor the Internet for any mention of the company’s brand name products. Websites, message boards, trade boards, and social media are automatically monitored using BrightPlanet’s patented content harvesting technology.

Websites flagged for counterfeit activity are accumulated and sent to the company via customized weekly reports, which also contain extracted competitor product information, online price points, contact information, online chat services, e-commerce options, WhoIs data, etc. Brightplanet also analyzes a daily list of newly registered URLs for any mentions of brand names.

Automated harvesting at the scale of the Internet reveals a whole new level of consciousness towards illegal online markets for the company, which could then target counterfeiters more thoroughly and accurately.

More Case Studies:

There are other examples of industries using Big Data and Deep Web harvesting to solve problems. In our “What is Big Data” whitepaper, finance, healthcare, politics and law enforcement case studies are also available.



Source: International AntiCounterfeiting Coalition

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