Recently, law enforcement has been cracking down on counterfeit merchandisers. While often cheaper, experts say fan merchandise that is counterfeit is often poorly made and are likely to wear out long before the memories do, reported a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette article titled, “Counterfeit Penguins Merchandise a Burgeoning Business.”

Carrying out several large-scale seizures of websites selling counterfeit merchandise, the federal government has been working on an investigation called Operation Red Zone, geared towards shutting down more than 300 websites selling fake NFL merchandise in late January.

Shareholder and co-chair of the Intellectual Property Section, Michael L. Dever spoke with the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette telling them that counterfeiters are buying Google ads related to their products to draw fans to their websites instead of official team online stores. He went on to say that counterfeiters have also grown more adept at designing websites that look legitimate, further ensnaring customers.

Nearly $2 billion is lost each year from the American economy due to customers purchasing counterfeit versions of products, according to recently release data by the U.S. Commerce Deparment. 

Read the full article – “Counterfeit Penguins Merchandise a Burgeoning Business” (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, June 7, 2013)