Don’t fall foul of fakes this Christmas season

Published 23 December 2015

Border Force is reminding Christmas shoppers to be wary of counterfeit goods which flood the market over the festive season.

Counterfeit products can seriously affect people’s health and safety and the UK’s economic growth. With this in mind, Border Force and its partners are committed to tackling dangerous fake products from reaching the streets.

Imitations of the latest Samsung and Apple phone cases, Tommy Hilfiger and Fred Perry clothing, Pokémon toys and Michael Kors designer handbags and cosmetics are just some of the counterfeit products that have been detected by Border Force in recent months. The vast majority of these products have been bought online and shipped to the UK from abroad. And whilst consumers think they are getting a bargain, in reality they’re not.

Hidden costs

Although some websites and unscrupulous traders may sell fakes at low prices, what they don’t say is that the people behind are often involved other serious organised crime. And it doesn’t stop there, as the cost to UK’s growth is even greater, not just in terms of lost income to genuine traders, but also to the economy, as no tax or VAT is paid. Border Force, along with its partners, will continue to focus on keeping these goods off the streets and bring those responsible for producing and distributing them to justice.

Goods that are found to be counterfeit products will be destroyed, leaving the consumer out of pocket, often to the tune of hundreds of pounds. In more serious cases importers could be prosecuted.

It is easy to be tricked into thinking people are getting a bargain, but during the Christmas season the message is that if something appears too good to be true it probably is.

Border Force urges anyone who has been sold counterfeit goods, or knows someone who is selling them, to contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.

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