HP TO SPEND $1B. ON CARTRIDGE SECURITY FEATURES

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HP TO SPEND $1B. ON CARTRIDGE SECURITY FEATURES

 user 2009-04-28 at 12:25:22 pm Views: 59
  • #22106
    http://www.itweb.co.za/sections/hardware/2009/0904201042.asp?O=FPTOP&S=Business&A=BUS
    HP will spend over a $1 billion on new security features for its printing products
    Johannesburg, 
    April 2009   – a cost it says will only increase in the next few years.
    In response to the increasing sophistication of counterfeiters, the
    company says this expenditure has become a necessity.“Ten to 15 years
    ago, you could always tell if a product was real or not. Now they make
    the product virtually the same and the customer is not convinced they
    have bought anything other than the original,” says Tina Rose, EMEA
    anti-counterfeit programme manager at HP.The company has introduced
    colour-shifting technology to its security labels and says it will
    change its packaging and introduce new security features every 12 to 18
    months. The new label will cost the company twice the cost of its
    previous label, but is an extra investment that Rose says is
    essential.“Security labels have been counterfeited before. We’re hoping
    this security label is difficult to counterfeit – but we are already
    thinking of the next one. Someone will counterfeit it – even if they
    don’t do it very well,” notes Rose.While she says the highest cost to
    HP currently is damage to its reputation, global estimates show
    possible large financial losses for the company. The Organisation for
    Economic Co-operation and Development estimates the annual value of
    international trade in counterfeit goods at $200 billion. The World
    Customs Organisation and the International Chamber of Commerce estimate
    5% to 8% of trade in brand-name goods occurs through illegal trades in
    printing supplies.Rose says it’s not possible for the company to even
    estimate how much this crime is costing it because it is still an
    underground activity.  “Counterfeiting is linked to organised crime. It
    takes money, investment and time to do it. They create distribution
    networks; they have people who refill and repack the goods and people
    who sell them. In 95% of the cases, the printing supplies are bought
    from businesses. It’s hugely organised.

    Regional solutions
    HP
    states that since 2008, local authorities have seized 150 681
    counterfeit products in Egypt, Kenya, Nigeria and SA. The
    anti-counterfeit programme implemented in Kenya was successful and a
    local programme for SA will be implemented, says Rose. She adds that
    this is expected to yield similar successes within the next six to nine
    months.“It’s significant that we tackle it in all regions. Once we
    identify resources with the necessary knowledge, we can then implement
    a programme in a specific country, which will impact on local
    businesses.”HP says that, according to its agreements with channel
    partners, companies are subject to unannounced audits. Rose states
    that, of the companies audited last year, 97% passed, while 3% failed –
    mostly for refusing HP access to their premises.

    Harmless crime
    Consumers
    need to become extra vigilant, says Rose. Security labels should be
    checked along with the quality of the packaging, while print cartridges
    should be carefully examined and supplies should only be bought from
    authorised sales channels.Despite attempts at tightening legislation,
    the problem will continue to grow with changing attitudes, says
    Rose.“Counterfeiting is still seen as a white-collar, victimless crime
    and, in many countries, counterfeiters will receive short-term
    sentences. It’s essentially – at the moment – a low-risk, high-profit
    operation. It needs to be seen as a very serious crime, with serious
    consequences – and not a victimless crime.”