Law enforcement agencies around the globe conduct counterfeit website “takedown raids” throughout the year. Participation in these law enforcement operations is free to SMEs but it does require close coordination with the law enforcement agencies. The major benefit to SMEs is that companies can leave the burden and costs of takedown activities to law enforcement agencies saving SMEs money and time. Brand protection service providers can help businesses follow these operations and submit the information needed to remove websites selling counterfeits. Below are the some of the key operations in which SMEs can participate:
Operation Pangea is organized by Interpol and has been in existence since. This operation aims to reduce the sale and availability of counterfeit pharmaceuticals online with the active goal to reduce harms to Internet users and improve the internet experience. Enforcements happen at determined times throughout the year. If you are interested in learning how and when you can participate and submit infringing website for takedown, you may contact the US Customs Immigration and Customers Enforcement in the United States or Interpol in Europe.
Europol’s and the IPR Center’s hugely successful and long-standing Operation “In Our Sites” (IOS) focuses on the removal of counterfeit sites online across domain names. This operation utilizes multiple police agencies across Europe and the United States. Like Operation Pangea, enforcements happen annually at times determined by the law enforcement agencies. For more information on how to participate and where to submit infringing website information, companies should check with the IPR Center or Europol.
Operation Aphrodite is managed by the EU’s Intellectual Property Office and focuses exclusively on counterfeit sales on social media and websites. This operation is run with the cooperation of Europol and agencies in Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Spain and the United Kingdom.
This operation by the London Police’s IP Crime Unit aims to disrupt and prevent websites from providing unauthorized access to copyrighted content. With a wealth of UK advertising and music content organizations involved including the Internet Advertising Bureau UK (IAB UK), BPI (British Phonographic Industry), IFPI (International Federation of the Phonographic Industry), and PRS for Music, Operation Creative suspends and removes pirated content as well as advertising.
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