About Half Products Sold on Walmart.com are Counterfeits according to US Government Accountability Office
Walmart offers trademark owners an ineffective and dysfunctional intellectual property infringement reporting system, ignoring complaints and allowing counterfeits to relist their products
October 31, 2021
October 28, 2021, Los Angeles, CA – Walmart shoppers face the daunting challenge of identifying and dodging a vast assortment of counterfeit, fraudulent, and replica products offered on Walmart.com. Walmart is both a direct retailer of fake and fraudulent items and has opened its website to global third-party sellers who can list just about anything they want, including counterfeit, replica, and fraudulent products. The 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 its transaction fee for each item sold.
Walmart joins Amazon, eBay, and Alibaba's push to capture a portion of the exploding e-commerce marketplace and the seedy and dishonest practice of selling an inexhaustible supply of counterfeit, replica, and fraudulent products. 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 11,600 counterfeit and fraudulent items on Walmart's website and removed 2,875 fakes at the direction of the infringed brand-owners. Walmart offers trademark owners an ineffective and dysfunctional intellectual property infringement reporting system, ignoring hundreds of trademark-owner complaints. While some listings are removed, others remain for months or were relisted for sale to unsuspecting consumers.
Consumers probably wouldn't suspect the counterfeit and fraudulent items found or purchased on Walmart.com.
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 144 listings reviewed on Walmart.com by The Counterfeit Report, only two products appeared authentic but can not be verified without a purchase.
Unscrupulous China salvagers re-label recycle unprotected 18650 Li-ion battery cells as "new" and sell them on Walmart at low prices with wild capacity claims. There is no legitimate individual 18650 battery with a capacity of 3800mAh or above. However, 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. Walmart acknowledged legal notice in 2019 to immediately stop selling the fraudulent and potentially fatal products, yet continues to do so. An authentic Samsung® 2500mAh battery is shown.
Family-owned Et Al Beauty manufactures the popular Fullips® lip enhancing beauty products. Along with success come the counterfeits, and Walmart is no exception. Buyers may end up purchasing carcinogenic China fakes from unscrupulous sellers. Authentic Fullips® beauty products are made in the USA from safe food-grade plastic and FDA approved colorant. Counterfeits have been found with lead and arsenic. A three-pack version was never manufactured by Fullips.
Authentic Dr. Numb 5% Lidocaine Cream is a popular topical anesthetic used to reduce pain for health care, skin conditions, tattooing and hair removal. Dr. Numb® is approved by the U.S. FDA for sale in the United States, and Health Canada for Canadian offerings. Counterfeit Dr. Numb (packaged as shown) submitted for ingredient testing did not contain any Lidocaine as indicated, but Tetracaine, an anesthetic known to cause fatal defects in animal testing, and can result in full anaphylactic shock.
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 jobs, consumer safety, 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 $4.5 trillion and cost 5.4 million net job losses by 2022.
The Counterfeit Report® is the first and only website to promote counterfeit awareness and provide consumers a free and informative visual guide to detecting counterfeit products. The Counterfeit Report has over 13 million unique viewers, has appeared on ABC, NBC, CBS, 20/20, Al-Jazeera, and Fox News TV, presented with the FBI and LAPD, and distributes to over 1500 news outlets and law firms.
The Counterfeit Report was awarded the prestigious Global Anti-Counterfeiting Award in the Media category in June 2018 for outstanding achievement in combating counterfeiting and piracy. The top honor is co-sponsored by Managing Intellectual Property and the Global Anti-Counterfeiting Group ("GACG"), an international network of national and regional IP protection and enforcement organizations covering over 40 countries. The Counterfeit Report is also a TRaCE (Tax Recovery and Criminal Enforcement) Task Force Community Partner, working to combat the underground economy with the DOJ, FBI, IRS, HSI, and EDD.
The Counterfeit Report has removed over 410 million counterfeit products from e-commerce websites including, Amazon, eBay, Walmart, Best Buy, Alibaba, Newegg, and DHgate, at the request of the trademark owners.
The Counterfeit Report uses thousands of authentic and counterfeit product photos to show consumers the sophistication of counterfeiters and their ability to create visually deceptive counterfeit products and packaging. Manufacturers and brand owners gain central venue mass-audience exposure and can immediately list and update their counterfeit product information for enhanced brand protection and direct consumer education. Consumers can report seeing or purchasing counterfeit products and the source directly to the manufacturer and authorities on the website.