Alibaba Group launches big data Anti-Counterfeiting Alliance and gets Louis Vuitton, Samsung, Mars and SWAROVSKI on board

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Alibaba Group has announced the launch of the “Alibaba Big Data Anti-Counterfeiting Alliance,” to foster industry collaboration and promote the use of big data and technology in the global fight against counterfeits, which received strong support from brands, trade associations, intellectual property experts, and regulators. Initially the alliance will have 20 members including Louis Vuitton, Samsung, SWAROVSKI, Mars, and Huawei, in addition to support from government bodies and law enforcement agencies in China.

“The most powerful weapon against counterfeiting today is data and analytics, and the only way we can win this war is to unite,” said Jessie Zheng, chief platform governance officer of Alibaba Group. “Alibaba welcomes brands and other organizations in the creation of the world’s first Big Data Anti-Counterfeiting Alliance. With our robust data capabilities, we are confident the alliance will accelerate the digital transformation in our global fight against counterfeits.”

The Alibaba Big Data Anti-Counterfeiting Alliance aims to pool resources and increase collaboration to promote a safe and healthy global e-commerce ecosystem where brands are protected from IP pirates.

Alibaba will provide alliance members with big data and advanced technological support in their IP enforcement work, including helping to block, screen and take down infringing listings. With more than one billion product listings across its platforms at any given time, Alibaba’s proactive monitoring system scans more than 10 million product listings per day; in the twelve months ending August 2016, Alibaba proactively removed more than 380 million product listings and closed down 180,000 third-party seller stores.

In return, brands and other members of the alliance have committed to share their expertise on IP authentication and anti-counterfeiting data with Alibaba. This data integration will enable Alibaba to provide leads to brands and law enforcement agencies for offline investigations and prosecutions. In the twelve months ending August 2016, leads provided by Alibaba led to the closing of approximately 675 counterfeit operations, putting hundreds of counterfeiters in jail.

“We take efforts to eradicate anti-counterfeiting very seriously and are encouraged by the alliance’s commitment to use big data and advanced technologies to thwart it,” said Scott Thompson, general counsel of marketing properties at Mars Inc. “We look forward to continuing to working with Alibaba and others to break the supply chain of counterfeit goods, and create an environment where counterfeiters can no longer hide.”

The alliance will also regularly review and have open and constructive dialogue regarding Alibaba’s platform governance rules and policies. Alibaba will incorporate members’ feedback and suggestions to continuously improve its existing anti-counterfeiting detection algorithms and machine-learning capabilities. In the spirit of full transparency, the alliance will publicly disclose its anti-counterfeiting progress and results on a regular basis.

In addition, the Alibaba Big Data Anti-Counterfeiting Alliance will raise awareness of IP enforcement best practices and consumer education, as well as explore new and innovative ways to better protect brands online and offline.