Half of All Items Available on Walmart Could be Counterfeit According to Government Investigation
Trademark owner complaints to Walmart can go unanswered for weeks or be ignored entirely
March 25, 2021
March 19, 2021, Los Angeles, CA – Shoppers expect Walmart to provide authentic and safe products when they shop on Walmart's website -- but that confidence is misplaced. Walmart's push to capture a portion of the exploding e-commerce marketplace exposes a seedy and dishonest practice -- the sale of counterfeit, replica, and fraudulent products.
Walmart is both a direct retailer of fake and fraudulent items and has opened its website, Walmart.com, to global third-party sellers who can list just about anything they want, including counterfeit, replica, and fraudulent products.
Counterfeit items appear right alongside authentic products, creating the illusion they are from Walmart or have Walmart's endorsement. Deceived consumers spend good money on bad products, while Walmart takes a transaction fee for each item sold.
An undercover investigation by the U.S. Government Accountability Office ("GAO") of counterfeit consumer goods on e-commerce websites, including Walmart (WMT), found that about 50% of the items the GAO purchased were counterfeit.
The Counterfeit Report, a global award-winning consumer advocate and industry watchdog, found over 11,100 counterfeit and fraudulent items on Walmart's website and removed 2,200 fakes on behalf of the infringed brand-owners. While some listings were removed, others remained for months or were relisted. Consumers probably wouldn't suspect the counterfeit items shown below were found or purchased on Walmart.com. Trademark owner complaints to Walmart can go unanswered for weeks or be ignored entirely.
Could you spot a counterfeit, replica, or fraudulent product on Walmart's?
In simple terms, there is no authentic microSDHC® computer memory product in the 2GB and 64GB capacities shown, the SDHC standard, or any licensed manufacturer's authentic product line. The counterfeit microSDHC cards shown here were offered by Walmart as a direct retailer or third-party sellers on Walmart. SD-3C, LLC owns and licenses the microSD® and microSDHC® trademarks to authentic, conforming products. Consumers risk malware and losing their data and images using counterfeit memory products.
Composite Resources Combat Application Tourniquet® (C-A-T®) has been supplied to the U.S. Military, police, first responders and the public worldwide for the past decade. Counterfeit and replica versions of the patented C-A-T tourniquet have catastrophically failed during actual life-saving medical emergencies. Of the 52 listings reviewed on Walmart.com by The Counterfeit Report, only four products appeared authentic but can not be verified without a purchase.
Unscrupulous China salvagers re-label recycle unprotected 18650 battery cells as "new" and sell them on Walmart at cheap prices with wild capacity claims. There is no legitimate individual 18650 battery with a capacity of 3800mAh or above, yet batteries with capacity claims up to 12,000mAh are offered on Walmart. The fraudulent batteries have an explosion and fire risk, and can be deadly. An authentic Samsung® 2500mAh battery is shown.
Everyone knows selling counterfeits is illegal, yet through huge legal loopholes and virtually immune to prosecution, IP laws, and safety standards, Walmart continues to enable and facilitate criminal activity with impunity. Walmart profits from fraudulent sales which impact consumer safety, jobs, and public trust. The consequence is destroyed U.S. companies and retailers, lost U.S. jobs, and duped consumers. The value of counterfeit and pirated goods is forecast to grow to $2.8 trillion and cost 5.4 million net job losses by 2022 says a International Chamber of Commerce Report.