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London cops bust fake Cisco hardware chain

More than 1,000 pieces of networking hardware seized

City of London cops today confirmed they have confiscated hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of counterfeit Cisco networking gear.

Officers from the Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) raided a premises in Herne Bay, Kent, on 25 July and discovered more than 1,000 counterfeit items of networking kit.

Several individuals were held and interviewed under caution as the probe continues, the police stated.

“The success of this operation has stopped organisations and companies from potential harm, should they have bought and used the counterfeit items,” said PIPCU Detective Sergant Kevin Ives.

Cisco – it is not alone – has long battled counterfeiters. The problem sometimes stems from midnight runs; at the end of a working day, scammers reset serial numbers and throughout the night produce parts or finished systems using the same digits.

The sticking point for customers is they can get caught with fake stuff that Cisco or other tech vendors will then refuse to support.

The advice from Cisco’s brand protection police is to request support contracts along with the hardware. Oh, and to not buy equipment that is priced at prices that are too good to be true.

Cisco director of brand protection, Neil Sheridan, said the raid this week had “taken a significant volume of counterfeit products out of circulation and provides a vast amount of evidence and insight into others who are trading illegally.” ®

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