Bonafi makes use of blockchain technology to simplify the authentication process. In a bid to empower brands big and small, product retailers as well as end users, the platform plans to make use of a combination approach that seals the loopholes that counterfeit criminals exploit.
The prevalence of counterfeit goods has eroded consumer confidence over the years. In order to protect company image and reduce unfair competition, companies are investing massive sums but with little success. Existing anti-counterfeit approaches are only able to block a minute fraction of counterfeit items. Criminals are quick to find loopholes in regulations and evolve their tactics faster than new methods are enacted.
CURRENT ISSUES ON FAKE ITEMS ON AMAZON AND EBAY
Online marketplaces make it easy for both sellers and buyers to congregate. Retail giants like Amazon, Ebay, and Overstock make this highway possible. But, even though they offer numerous benefits for businesses, they also provide the perfect guise for the perpetration of crimes related to counterfeiting.
Abraham Kim, Bonafi CMO, says, “During my previous employment at SwakDesigns, we’ve experienced several sellers on Amazon stealing our images and selling the counterfeited dress at steep discounts. Some claimed to be our brand, and some created their own names with inferior quality. We noticed that these counterfeit sellers hijacked many of our images from our website and our own Amazon listings.”
“Customers were buying the counterfeits would have horrible experience and wrongly accuse our brand for making bad products that didn’t last.”
The popular e-commerce sites, including Ebay, claim to have stringent on-boarding procedures for sellers to ensure that there is no compromise on the quality and genuineness of goods. In most cases however, they take a reactionary approach based on customer complaints. But, the online retail outlets such as Ebay and Amazon allows easy access and on-boarding for all sellers. This makes deleting perpetrator accounts and de-listing items possible, but not effective. These same criminals open new accounts and try to make the most of it before site managers catch up with them.
HOW IT WORKS
Bonafi provides the answer to this challenge by making it possible to track and authenticate all types of goods. The system makes use of the blockchain distributed ledger technology to create a permanent immutable record of a product’s verification data through the entire supply chain.
- The Bonafi NFC Crypto-Tag™ is issued to the owners of the IP, patent and trademarks of the product.
- The cryptographic tag is then attached to the product and acts as the data delivery engine conveying information on the identity of the manufacturer, date and place of production and its journey to the retail store.
- The transactional data is recorded to the product’s blockchain at every step of its movement through the supply chain creating a unique fingerprint for each individual item. Since the Crypto-Tag™TM is encrypted with cryptography, it is not copyable and, therefore, no would-be counterfeiter is to be able to come up with a fake duplication of the tag.
- Using Bonafi’s mobile App, a consumer is able to verify authenticity by scanning the tag with an NFC enabled phone. Here the company’s utility token, BonaU, is spent to access the system. Essentially, the details on the Crypto-Tag™ and the product’s blockchain have to match to prove the authenticity of a product at any stage of the supply chain.
- Manufacturer rewards the customers with the BonaU Tokens for owner registrations and owner usage feedback/reviews. This allows continued engagement between the manufacturer and the consumers.
Bonafi offers a reliable method for authenticating the supply chain with numerous benefits for all the parties involved. Its blockchain approach will greatly reduce the cost that manufacturers are incurring in implementing anti-counterfeit measures that are only marginally effective at best.
Moreover, it will protect consumers from sub-standard and at times risky products that could lead to injury or even death. At the same time, sales that are currently lost to fraudulent sources will drastically be reduced, increasing profit margins. Most importantly, it will reduce the negative impact that comes with having a consumer buy a fake and get under-par results, associating the fake product with the authentic brand name.