In the summer of 2018, US Customs and Border Protection filed charges against 33 people for trafficking in counterfeit goods. Government agents seized 22 shipping containers full of fake designer handbags and belts with a potential retail value of a half a billion dollars.
Counterfeiting is big business. As quickly as one ring is shut down, another is ready to off-load more fake goods on our shores because the demand for these knockoffs continues to grow.
On one side, you have the customers that are happy to buy a fake Birkin because they can’t afford the real thing. At a glance, most people can’t tell a real designer bag from a fake so it’s an easy way to look like you’re worth more than you are.
The bigger problem is born of deception. The so-called Super-Fakes are so well crafted they look exactly like the real thing to the naked eye. Once these bags make their way into the second-hand market they mix in with the real handbags, making it even harder sort fact from fiction.
Now add in the rise in e-commerce and the problem is magnified two-fold. Even though all of the major resale websites forbid the sale of counterfeit goods, it’s a rule that’s nearly impossible to enforce. Because, unless the replica is exceptionally, poorly made, it’s hard to gauge authenticity from photos alone. Once you have it in your hands, it’s a whole different matter, but by then it’s too late and you’re unlikely to get your money back.
Pierre Denis, CEO of Jimmy Choo, told Vogue UK, “Like with any luxury product, as soon as you feel the leather and look at the finishing details, the difference in quality and craftsmanship is blatant. Logos may be easy to mimic but stitching, welting and quality of materials are not.”
Examining a handbag in person by an expert might seem like the most reliable way of authenticating a designer handbag, however, mistakes can easily be made especially when humans and emotions are involved. In addition to this, designers are always changing characteristics of their handbag to trip up a counterfeiter and it’s difficult to stay on top of all the differences year after year and with all the different designers and styles.
The only way to keep up with the latest is with a deep database of microscopic images such as the ones you’ll find at Entrupy. Entrupy’s patented system uses artificial intelligence to microscopically examine the bag’s exterior, interior, and hardware; then compares those images to the over 30 million images already in our database to determine a bag’s authenticity. Within minutes, you’ll know if the bag you’re holding is real or a counterfeit with 99.1% accuracy.
Authenticating luxury handbags with Entrupy builds trust with your customers and protects you from fraudulent claims. But more importantly, when you include an Entrupy Certificate of Authentication with each handbag you sell, you’re doing your part to stem the tide of counterfeits in America.