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June 2014 - Surelock
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Monthly Archives: June 2014

Turn Back Crime

  • June 30, 2014
  • Turn Back Crime

    A fake watch, cheap cigarettes, a pirated DVD: What may seem like innocent purchases, could be funding criminal activity, such as cybercrime, the illegal arms trade, kidnapping, crimes against children and even terrorism. This film exposes the link between purchasing counterfeit items and the more dangerous crimes that purchasing enables.

    The first of a series, this film is part of a global campaign initiative, entitled “Turn Back Crime,” presented by INTERPOL.

    The Turn Back Crime campaign highlights the unseen dangers of organized crime and the impact on everyday life these illicit activities hold.

    Help people you know make informed decisions in the way they use the Internet or buy products, so that together we can turn back crime.




    read more
    by Ron

Sunday Mirror Finds a Hidden ‘Shopping Mall’ Selling Fakes

  • June 21, 2014
  • The Sunday Mirror (June 15th) reports that a hidden shopping mall selling fake designer goods has been discovered behind a row of derelict shops in the Bury New Road area of Manchester.  The secret shopping village – on a once bustling street in Manchester – is packed with fake Louis Vuitton handbags, Nike football shirts, and Jimmy Choo shoes.  But despite a recent clampdown on illegal goods by Greater Manchester Police, anyone can just wander in to this Hooky Street-style den of “designer” goods.

    The newspaper reports that they were able to buy must-have items such as a fake Louis Vuitton satchel for £15, counterfeit Jimmy Choo shoes for £10, fake Beats headphones for £5 and a “Nike England” shirt for £20, all way below prices for the real thing.  They state that hordes of shoppers from across the UK come to buy fake handbags, watches, sunglasses and sports gear from a labyrinth of more than 20 black market stores.

    Surelock has carried out a number of covert operations and surveillance on behalf of their clients in this area of Manchester in order to identify the main offenders.  As a result we have engaged with Greater Manchester Police and Manchester City Trading Standards carrying out disruption raids where millions of pounds worth of counterfeit merchandise have been seized, comprising mainly clothing, sports shoes, handbags, jewellery and watches.

    The moral for anyone looking for designer goods is that, if they are being sold at below market prices, then they are either counterfeit or stolen.  Stay clear and do not part with your money.


    Archive photo of an operation in which Surelock participated
    A large quantity of counterfeits were seized

    read more
    by Ron

Avoid Bad Hair Days…Avoid Counterfeit Hair Stylers!

  • June 16, 2014

    Bad hair day

    Dictionary.com informs us  

    coun·ter·feit [koun-ter-fit] adjective  

    1. made in imitation so as to be passed off fraudulently or deceptively as genuine; not genuine; forged: counterfeit dollar bills.

    2. pretended; unreal: counterfeit grief.

    I like the fact that this mentions grief. It is so true!

    So I’m suggesting, please look further than the quality and cost. Think about how dangerous the item can be. Don’t believe it will be made to any safety standard, that it will have undertaken any testing or will come with any genuine warranty. Are you prepared to take the chance it won’t overheat your hair or cause it to fall out?

    A few simple steps –

    Have a look on the internet – so many of the genuine registered trademarked companies have articles on their websites informing you how to spot a fake and how to check with them whether your item is genuine. I’m thinking GHD, StraightFix, Paul Mitchell hair products to name a few see the links below.





    If you have bought a fake – report it to Trading Standards or Crimestoppers.

    The bottom line is if something sounds too good to be true it probably is, remember if it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then it probably is a duck. We at Surelock represent lots of companies by helping them to reduce counterfeits-if we can’t help you maybe we know someone who can.

    read more
    by Ron

Increased Crackdown on Links to Counterfeiters’ Websites

  • The government has stated that fakers account for 10 per cent of global trade and is to step up its crackdown on fake goods in the UK.  A new report has revealed that clothing, tobacco and alcohol are the top products targeted by counterfeiters.

    72 million website links were removed in the past year, up by 620% on a year ago, while the specialist City of London IP crime unit is investigating nearly £30m worth of IP crime in its first nine months.  A number of large brands have taken matters in to their own hands and taken fakers to court including Burberry which won a £63m settlement in 2012 against fraudsters.

    Surelock is playing its part on behalf of its clients by removing links on Facebook and EBay to websites selling fakes.

    read more
    by Ron

Exmouth Woman Who Sold Fake Cosmetics On eBay Spared Jail

  • June 7, 2014
  • Deborah Hamber
    Deborah Hamber made £24,720 between July 2012 and February 2013

    A woman has been spared prison after admitting selling thousands of pounds worth of fake cosmetics on eBay.

    Tests on a tube of mascara being sold by Deborah Hamber from her home contained twice the permitted level of lead, Exeter Crown Court heard.

    Hamber, 41, from Exmouth in Devon, admitted seven trading offences.

    She was given a four month sentence, suspended for a year, and ordered to do 150 hours of community service.

    Fake cosmetics
    Hamber had 900 fake cosmetics items at her home when it was raided

    ‘Safety issues’

    High Court bailiff Hamber had 900 fake cosmetics items at her home when it was raided by trading standards officers, the court heard.

    Hamber had wanted to boost her income and started selling fake MAC, Bare Essentials, Urban Decay and Lancome cosmetics from China.

    The goods were sold for half the usual price and she made £24,720 between July 2012 and February 2013 from the trading.

    Rosie Rowe, of Devon and Somerset Trading Standards Service, said: “Clearly there are safety issues with stuff like mascara and we aim to create a level playing field.

    “If you have someone importing these from China you don’t have that.”

    The court also ordered forfeiture and destruction of the seized goods and a confiscation investigation under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.

    Councillor Roger Croad, Devon County Council’s Cabinet member with responsibility for the trading standards service, said: “This sort of activity hurts local retailers of legitimate goods as well as the brand holders.

    “It can also mean substandard and shoddy goods are imported – and in the case of cosmetics, dangerous ones with high levels of toxins.”




    read more
    by Ron

Clarity Issued by the FCA on Process Serving

  • abilogo-new-4Following representation by the Association of British investigators (ABI) the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has reviewed the licensing requirement under the Consumer Credit Act for the activity of ‘Pure Process Serving’ and issued the following guidelines:

    ‘Pure Process Serving’ is meant that: –

    The firm (a process server) is instructed by a law firm, or in-house solicitor, to serve legal documents on the recipient as part of the pre-court legal process.

    The firm will serve a variety of different types of documents (e.g. County Court or High Court Claim Forms, Bankruptcy Petitions, Statutory Demands, Court Orders and Applications), some of which may relate to debts due under credit agreements, but many of which may not.

    The firm will be aware of the legal nature of the document, but will not be told about or investigate the cause of action or the underlying circumstances. For example, the firm may not be aware whether the claim is for a consumer credit debt or a different type of debt.

    The firm will take steps to ensure that the recipient understands the legal nature of the document and the fact that it is part of a legal process (e.g. that it is a Claim Form), but will not engage in any discussion or negotiation with the recipient about the contents of the document or the substance of the action.

    If the recipient initiates discussion, the firm will direct the recipient to the law firm or in-house solicitor, which instructed the firm.  ‘Pure Process Servers’ will not serve other documents such as CCA default notices

    The FCA agrees that where in England a firm is instructed to undertake ‘Pure Process Serving’, the firm should not be regarded as being engaged in ‘debt collecting’ i.e. taking steps to procure the payment of a debt due under a credit agreement (or a relevant A36H agreement) or a consumer hire agreement.   Thus the FCA is of the view that firms engaged in this (and not doing any other activity which might constitute debt collecting or debt administration) do not need authorisation and the FCA intends to operate on that basis pending amendment to the Perimeter Guidance (PERG) in the FCA Handbook, following consultation.

    However, the FCA stresses that this is a question of interpretation of legislation, which ultimately is for the courts to decide, and the FCA cannot rule out the possibility that a court might decide on the facts that a ‘Pure Process Server’ is in fact engaged in regulated activity.

    Mark Hodgson, Vice President of the ABI said ‘I am extremely grateful to the FCA for the manner in which it engaged in dialogue, listened to the concerns of our members and have now provided the industry with clear guidelines.’

    read more
    by Ron