Over the last couple years there has been an increase in the amount, scope and nature of counterfeit products appearing in the worldwide marketplace. The certification industry has not been immune from this trend and the amount of products being sold bearing counterfeit certification marks seems to be a global problem. INTERPOL is concerned about this trend and believes there is ample evidence internationally to indicate that transnational organized criminals are heavily involved with IP crime – including manufacturing products bearing counterfeit certification marks. Furthermore, INTERPOL is concerned about the industrialized manufacture and worldwide distribution of counterfeit products that have the potential to cause serious injury to consumers or loss of life.
INTERPOL and the Anti-Counterfeiting Committee have partnered to combine resources to fight the counterfeiting of certification marks on a global level. Operation Overshock is an integrated task force coordinated and facilitated by INTERPOL in collaboration with Anti-Counterfeiting Committee. The operation will engage multiple law enforcement and customs agencies to investigate and prosecute offenders who illegally profit from counterfeiting certification marks and put the public at risk. Particular emphasis will be placed on encouraging the relevant authorities in source countries to intervene in the activities of transnational and organized criminal enterprises that deal in products bearing counterfeit certification marks. Strategic and tactical plans will be coordinated on the pillars of enforcement, education and partnerships.
INTERPOL will seek to facilitate and coordinate interventions leading to the seizure of counterfeit product and prosecution of offenders by police, customs and other partner agencies. Participating agencies will be encouraged to share information obtained from enforcement activities with INTERPOL for inclusion in the Database on International Intellectual Property (DIIP) Crime. The certification bodies will be responsible for providing training to these agencies along with any other support that is required.
Enforcement efforts in isolation or without coordination will not effectively combat or dismantle sophisticated and organized criminal operations that illegally profit from counterfeit certification marks. Project Overshock will provide a systematic, strategic and coordinated effort between INTERPOL and its certification industry partners with the goal of detecting and dismantling transnational and organized counterfeiting networks.