Bild på piratkopierad väska

Fraud and intrusions: Counterfeiting


Discover what intellectual property theft means for your business and how we can help protect against counterfeiting.

Contact us

What is counterfeiting and how do you protect against It?

Counterfeiting is one of many forms of modern-day piracy. It knows no bounds, being present both in the real world and the digital one, and involves the imitation of genuine goods, on occasion, even the outright theft of intellectual property. This scourge can wreak havoc on any business - irrespective of its size.

How does counterfeiting work? 

What is counterfeiting but the imitation of a genuine product? There isn’t one specific type of counterfeiting practice deployed. What is a forgery compared to, say, intellectual property theft? Forgery is the act of producing a “replica”, an imitation product, and when we discuss forgery, we’re often referring to money. 

By contrast, intellectual property theft might mean that a rival has hijacked your idea and is developing their own cheaper, imitation version of your product. It may also mean that a rogue trader (or a person) has copied your product and made it available online for free, cutting off any revenue you would legally be owed for selling your product. While quite different in terms of how they work, they are both commonplace examples of counterfeiting.

Counterfeit products are everywhere

You don’t have to look hard to find counterfeit products, such is the enormity of the industry. Physical markets may be littered with fake clothes that may have conveniently “fallen off the back of a lorry”, whether the trader knows it or not. If you’re old enough, most of you will remember someone who had the latest bootleg DVDs and CDs, ripped and copied straight to a blank disk which they sold for far less than the original.

You can also find counterfeit products online. Counterfeit cosmetics are regularly sold on offshore websites, and it is rare for Swedish consumers to be satisfied with the product that arrives. You’re no doubt aware of movie and music piracy, too. You can go back to the days of dodgy DVDs and P2P platforms such as Kazaa and Napster, modern torrent sites like Kat.Ph or The Pirate Bay, direct download services like Mega, or even Google Drive; counterfeit, stolen, imitation and bootlegged products are and always have been widely available, and often freely so.

Counting the costs of counterfeiting

Some consumers may find it rather convenient to snap up the latest episode of their favourite television show, a cracked copy of your company’s software, or a knock-off, imitation shirt for peanuts. However, there are real economic consequences to counterfeiting, and we should not underestimate those.

Counterfeiting and bootlegging involves the breach of copyright, deliberate imitation and theft of a design, ignorance of a trademark, or copying a patent. Whether an individual or entity creates replicas and counterfeit products for financial gain or for free isn’t going to be of paramount importance to your business. The damage has been done all the same.

Economically, counterfeiting will be damaging for your enterprise. The loss of revenue your company faces, the chunk of change that won’t arrive at the Swedish Tax Office because it is lost in the black market is just the start. Things can get worse. An epidemic of counterfeiting can lead to job losses and even a loss of life in extreme cases.

One of the hallmarks of counterfeit goods is that they are often poorly constructed. Cheaply designed e-cigarettes come with profound health implications. Shoddy craftsmanship in toys could lead to them breaking, and children could end up choking on loose parts. Electronic products may be cheaply imitated with lacklustre components, potentially making them fire hazards. We’ve all seen this before, and we’re sure you get the picture. The knock-on effect on your company's reputation from such bad publicity could be disastrous, even if your business is wholly blameless in the matter.

Protecting your business from counterfeiting

While counterfeiters have an array of motives for doing what they do - it may be financial, purely to cause havoc, or even a rival business aiming to undercut yours - their motive isn’t that relevant in the battle to protect against counterfeiting.

It may seem like you’re banging your head against a wall sometimes; once a counterfeiting operation is knocked out of commission, more pop up like weeds. Fortunately, there are ways that you can fight back. There is no one strategy you can take, but protecting yourself is recommended, and we at Abion will show you how.

Elementary steps for basic protection

The first thing entrepreneurs must do is protect their intellectual property (IP) rights. This means you need to think about patents, your designs, and trademarks. Completing these steps doesn’t guarantee that you won’t suffer from the ills of counterfeiting; trademarks alone won’t convince a counterfeiter not to pirate your product. However, it is a start, as your business can prove that you developed any design, UI, software, or product first.

You may also want to look beyond Sweden’s scope. Entrepreneurs might want to look at protecting their IP at an EU level. For instance, if your product is designed for a global audience, you’ll want to ensure it has like-for-like protections in the countries you wish to do business in. Protecting your assets in Sweden and not beyond is one of the easiest ways for counterfeit, bootlegged products to appear elsewhere.

Abion helps protect your business from counterfeiting

Arguably the best way to protect your business from the perils of counterfeiting, piracy and theft is to equip yourself with some firepower. At Abion, we can help you do just that.

We’ve put together a reliable package of measures, software, and tools for you to use to fight back against bootleggers and counterfeiters. Let us introduce you to a few of these below.

Start monitoring your brand

Monitoring your brand is a critical step in the fight against counterfeiting. Risks associated with failing to do so include mirror sites pirating your software, email scams, fake advertisements, and of course, counterfeit goods being sold at dubious marketplaces masquerading as genuine traders.

We offer a cost-effective basic package (for trademarks and domains) and an extended monitoring service that is ideal for marketplaces and social media platforms. 

This tool is ideal for any proactive business that wants to protect itself from counterfeit goods. It allows you to monitor your brand on the digital landscape, and we offer bespoke tools that can be tailor-made for your requirements. Any sniff of trademark infringement, counterfeit goods, or copied and pirated products will see our lawyers immediately on the case.

Our enforcement databases flag for counterfeit goods

We also provides another vital tool in the fight against counterfeit goods. Our enforcement database provides unrivaled assistance in your bid to stop counterfeiting in its tracks. 

We can set your business up with Swedish Customs. We can explain and help you with customs declarations and liaise between customs and your business. Our tools can help detect counterfeit goods when they arrive at customs, and should that occur; we will reach out to discuss your legal options. The customs declaration provides us with the tools to identify, seize and destroy counterfeit imports and exports if they aren’t the real deal. With our tools, your fightback against counterfeit goods a reality.

Related services

Our offices Abion
Tech-enabled Online Brand Protection

Online Brand Protection

Online brand protection is more than just removing fakes. We combines innovative technology with our in-house expertise to tackle infringements.
Website Cloning

Web Content Watch

Web Content Watch services monitor, protect and eliminate threats and allow you to control your digital footprint.
Abion Hub customer portal

Search Engine Watch

Social Media Watch counteracts fake accounts and advertisements and provides you with relevant information about how your brand is visible in social...
Woman in business, trademark protection

Trademark Management

We secure the exclusive right to your trademark and protect it from potential infringements.
Woman in business, trademark protection

Intellectual property rights

Learn about intellectual property law and how to protect your company's intellectual property rights – Purpose, Terms, The 4 areas of Intellectual Pr...
TMCH - protection against improper domain registrations

TMCH – protection against improper domain registrations

Protect your trademark from being exposed to cybersquatting. TMCH verifies your trademark information, improving your trademark protection.

DomainBlock to combat cybersquatting

Secure your brand against unauthorized domain name registrations in over 300 domain name extensions with DomainBlock!
Trademark protection

SAML support in Abion Core

Did you know that Abion's user portal Abion Core fully supports Single Sign-On (SSO) via SAML?
Web security Abion

Web security

Web Security: By safeguarding assets, customers' data, and reputation, it plays a vital role in maintaining trustworthiness in the online landscape.
Domain monitoring at Abion

Domain monitoring

Domain monitoring is a service for you to monitor if an already registered domain becomes active and might be a threat to your brand.


Using a backorder, we help increase your chances of registering the desired domain, the millisecond it is released on the market.
Smart and effective Domain Management Abion

Strategy and consultation

We can help you with strategy and consultation for your brand. Since we have gathered all the expertise in-house, we can give you comprehensive help...
TMCH - protection against improper domain registrations

Contract management

Our legal team can help you review your contract management for any intellectual property issues related to your brand.
Trademark strategy Abion

Trademark strategy

Do you need help with a trademark strategy for your brands and intellectual property? Our trademark lawyers can help you!
partnerprogrammet Internetselskab Abion

Trademark consulting

Need help with trademark consultation? As part of our trademark management, we offer expertise in strategic policy and consultation for your trademark.


Do you need help with questions relating to copyright? Our lawyers have wide-ranging expertise and can give you both advice and help you take action.
Hosting Abion

Website analysis

With a website analysis, we help make sure that your e-commerce meets both the formal and informal requirements placed on your website.

Legal Services

From clearance searches through to enforcement, we help you build long-term strategies to create, evaluate, maintain, protect and monetise your intel...
Trademark renewal at Abion

Trademark renewal

Trademark renewal is necessary every 10 years to maintain both exclusive rights and trademark protection. We can keep an eye on it for you.
Trademark infringement - Abion

Trademark infringement

Have you been a victim of trademark infringement? We are here to help, once the damage is done but also to ensure that you are proactively protected
Customer Support Abion Register your trademark now

Trademark registration

From dream to reality. Our legal team will help you apply to register a trademark so no vital details are missed.


We can help with a preliminary investigation of your trademark to find out if it is unique enough to register.
woman standing in window thinking of brand freedom with Abion and their virtual server and VPS

Virtual Server, VPS

A virtual private server, VPS, is more flexible, powerful, and secure for websites, e-commerce, and applications than web hosting. You also get exclu...


As a leading web hosting provider, we offer everything from web hosting to custom-made server solutions for large and small companies.


S/MIME is the certificate that gives outgoing emails a digital signature and ensures that nothing in the email has been changed in transit.
Email services at ABion


At Abion we have email solutions for both large and small operations, everything custom made for you.
man working on his computer document signing

Document Signing

With Document signing, you add an electronic, digital signature to a document to ensure that the document hasn't been changed or corrupted.
Code Signing Certificate

Code Signing Certificate

Do you have software or an application? Do you want to protect your users from viruses? Then the Code Signing Certificate is for you.

Domain investigation

With a domain investigation, our domain experts can check the status of your preferences regarding a domain name.
Domain consolidating Abion

Domain consolidation

We help you with domain consolidation to group your entire domain portfolio with a single provider. This gives you simplified administration, greater...
Domain strategy Abion

Domain strategy

We offer expertise in domain strategy to help you achieve a strategic and proactive domain portfolio in order to reach your corporate objectives.
TMCH - protection against improper domain registrations

Domain Name Consultation

Do you need domain consultation for your digital assets, your domain portfolio for example? Then our domain experts can help you!
DNSSEC at Abion


Reduce the risk of being a victim of DNS infringement and ensure that domains only convey information from the right sources. DNSSEC, simply put, mat...
Server at ports group

Anycast DNS

Anycast DNS is a technology for routing network traffic that increases the speed and availability of your online resources. With Anycast, an IP addre...
Secure DNS at Abion

DNS services

Smart and smooth DNS management in our customer platform, Abion Core. We also offer DNSSEC, Anycast DNS, and Https redirect.

Our top-level domains

We can help you buy a top-level domain wherever in the world you want, and we make sure that registration is correct for the relevant country.

Domain name acquisition

Do you want to buy a domain that is already taken? We can help you acquire a domain that is already registered.
Woman managing her domain names

Register a domain

Abion can help you register a domain wherever in the world you want to. Domain registration of top domains in the whole world.
Registry lock

Registry Lock

Registry lock increases the protection of your most important domain names and protects against unwanted changes to your domain at registry level.

Protect domain name

Do you need help protecting your domains? We can help you with, among other things, management, encryption, and surveillance of your domains.
Transfer domain with Abion

Transfer domain

Do you want to transfer a domain to us? Are you looking for a secure and stable partner for your domains? Then you are in the right place!
Domain name renewal

Domain name renewal

Time to renew your domain name? Are you looking for a provider that will keep track of and manage all your domains easily and effectively? We can help!
Changing ownership

Change domain ownership

Do you need help updating the existing ownership information for your domain? Then you are in the right place. Contact us for help!
Domain management Abion

Domain Name Management

At Abion, we specialise in domain consultation, offering personalised advice and expert guidance to align your digital assets seamlessly with your co...
Smart Seal

Smart Seal

Smart Seal gives your customers a visual confirmation that you have taken the necessary steps to secure their transactions and information.
partnerprogrammet Internetselskab Abion

E-Commerce Law

Avoid high costs and badwill – Create a safe E-commerce website for your customers with e-commerce law.
Design Protection Abion

Design Protection

If you have a product where you want to protect the design, pattern, or shape, you can apply for design protection. We will help you!

Trademark Watch

Trademark watch allows you to quickly object to applications that are similar to yours, preventing their registration before it’s too late.
Custom declaration Abion

Customs Management

Stop the import of counterfeit goods, make a Custom Declaration and register your rights in the enforcement database.
man working on his computer document signing


A takedown means that if you believe that someone has committed trademark and / or copyright infringement on your domain name or website, you can app...
We secure your email with ECP

App Watch

App Watch - Monitors existing and new apps, so you and your suppliers can rest assured that your organization controls your brand.
morning misty forest, a man takes pictures of nature on a smartphone camera. the morning dawn is met by a traveler who is a fan of photography and hiking

Social Media Watch

Social Media Watch counteracts fake accounts and advertisements and provides you with relevant information about how your brand is visible in social...
partnerprogrammet Juristkontor Abion

Legal measures

Have you been a victim of trademark infringement and need legal action? Our legal team has an extensive skill set and are here to help!
Abion Core

Marketplace Watch

Marketplace Watch regularly scans over 1000 ecommerce sites. You will be able to quickly detect unauthorized retailers or advertisements.
Secure email, ECP

Secure email, ECP

The technology behind secure email protects organizations against email fraud, both internally and externally for customers and suppliers.
Woman looking out a window

SSL Certificate

By encrypting traffic between the web server and the browser, an TLS / SSL certificate prevents any outsider from eavesdropping on the data being sent.
Domain name

API for Abion Core

In Abion Core, you can use an API to manage your DNS management and zone file yourself without logging in to an external platform.
Monitoring services Abion

Monitoring services

Our Monitoring services protects your brand from intrusion into everything from apps, social media to websites.
AdultBlock Abion


AdultBlock blocks your terms from being registered with any of the adult Top Level Domains dotXXX, dotADULT, dotSEX and dotPORN.
Smart and effective Domain Management Abion

Domain Watch

Protect your domains with Domain Watch against fraudsters. The service protects you from scams such as mirroring your website, using a similar, missp...
partnerprogrammet Internetselskab Abion


There are a lot of different uses for digital certificates. We can help you with everything from implementation to management.
Get VMC - Verified Mark Certificate at Abion

VMC Certificate

Verified Mark Certificate lets your company render a logotype in your customer’s e-mail clients. Become one of the first businesses with VMC.
man working on his computer document signing

SSL Management for agents

As an agent, you can now contact me, Rikard, directly and get a flexible, secure and cost-effective solution for your SSL management!

FAQs: Learn more about counterfeiting

What type of crime is counterfeiting?

Essentially, counterfeiting is fraud. It is one of the more serious crimes out there and often comes with heavy fines and imprisonment.

Why is counterfeiting illegal? Is it not solely competition?

Counterfeiting isn’t the same as having legal competition, where any similarities may be pure coincidence. Stealing another’s design or disseminating their products for free isn’t fair competition - it is theft, and that is what makes it illegal.

Is Counterfeiting the same as online piracy?

They are similar. Piracy typically refers to the theft of IP and products, such as software, and its availability (often for free) online. Counterfeiting typically refers to physical goods designed to rip-off, imitate or cheat consumers into thinking they are a genuine, original product.

Where does the word “counterfeit” originate from?

The English term derives from Middle English and is based on the Old Norman “countrefeter” and Old French “contrefaire” for “make in imitation”. It also has ties to the Latin “contra” and “facere”, or “make in opposition”.

Do consumers knowingly buy counterfeit goods?

Some do, but not everyone, as imitation products can be nearly identical to the real deal, making it challenging for any honest consumers to differentiate between them. Innocent people can sometimes purchase counterfeit products in good faith, unaware that they’ve been conned by sub-par, illegal goods.

Did you not find the answer to your question? Contact us and we will help you.

Insight & Support

Popular blogs

black sweater purple smoke

5 famous cases of counterfeiting

Trademark Management
9 April 2024
Website Cloning

Traditional VS Today’s Brand Protection

Trademark Management
2 April 2024
Rome invite

Rome Reception Sign-Up

20 March 2024