PHILADELPHIA – US Customs and Border Protection officials seized a shipment of fake smartphone digitizers in St. Patrick’s Day so that unsuspecting consumers are not at risk of being ripped off.
The digitizer is the smartphone’s thin touchscreen attached above the LED screen that sends user touches to the phone’s processor which translates that touch into an action. Counterfeit digitizers may experience degradation of touch sensitivity or fail prematurely.
Additionally, manufacturers of most consumer products will not honor warranties to repair or replace counterfeit copies of their products, whether or not consumers intentionally purchase counterfeits.
CBP officers first inspected the shipment, billed as “Mobile Displays,” on February 3. The shipment arrived from Austria and was destined for an address west of Chicago. Officials discovered that the shipment contained a total of 648 Samsung-branded digitizers.
CBP officers suspected the digitizers were counterfeit and detained the shipment. The officers then submitted the documentation and photographs to CBP’s trade experts at the Electronics Centers of Excellence and Expertise.
On Friday, CBP trade experts verified that the consumer goods were not genuine and had infringing trademarks and copyrights registered with CBP through the e-Recordation program (https://iprr.cbp .gov/s/). CBP officers at the Area Port of Philadelphia seized the digitizers on Friday.
The fake Samsung digitizers cost $128,952 manufacturer’s suggested retail price, if they are genuine.
No one was criminally charged. The investigation is ongoing.
“We strongly encourage consumers looking for a good deal on a new or used smartphone, or on a touchscreen repair, that this is not a chance. Consumers should protect themselves by purchasing the phone or service repair from a reputable vendor,” said Joseph Martella, CBP’s Area Port Director for the Area Port of Philadelphia. “Customs and Border Protection officials remain committed to protecting American consumers through of blocking counterfeit and pirated products.”
CBP protects businesses and consumers every day through an aggressive Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) enforcement program. International trade in counterfeit consumer products is illegal. It steals profits from trademark holders, steals tax revenues from the government, funds transnational criminal organizations, and unregulated products that potentially threaten the health and safety of American consumers. Counterfeit consumer goods may also be obtained or produced in facilities that use forced labor.
In fiscal year 2022, CBP officers and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) special agents seized more than 20,812 shipments containing goods that violated Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) during the Fiscal Year (FY) 2022, which equates to nearly 25 million counterfeit products. The total estimated suggested manufacturer retail price of the seized goods, if they are genuine, is more than $2.98 billion (USD), or an average of more than $8 million per day.
Additionally, HSI special agents arrested 255 individuals in 2022, obtained 192 indictments, and received 95 convictions related to intellectual property crimes. To learn more about HSI’s role in combating counterfeiting, visit the National IPR Coordination Center.
The media can mine additional enforcement details by viewing CBP’s IPR webpage or by viewing the previous year’s annual counterfeit product seizure reports.
CBP’s border security mission is led at our nation’s Ports of Entry by CBP officers and agricultural specialists from the Office of Field Operations. CBP inspects international travelers and cargo and searches for illicit narcotics, undeclared currency, weapons, counterfeit consumer products, illicit agriculture, invasive weeds and pests, and other illicit products that could harm the American public, US businesses, and our nation’s safety and economy. vigor
See what CBP accomplished during “A Typical Day” in 2022. Learn more at www.CBP.gov.
Follow the Director of CBP’s Baltimore Field Office on Twitter at @DFOBaltimore for breaking news, current events, human interest stories and photos, and CBP’s Office of Field Operations on Instagram at @cbpfieldops.