If you have been to a flea market before, there is a chance you have seen counterfeit goods sold by vendors. These goods range from luxury bags to clothes. They often look similar, if not identical, to the original they copied. Vendors also sell these fakes at a lower price compared to the original. However, there are instances where a counterfeit good is more expensive than the original. This situation happens with luxury watch brands , which are some of the most common victims of counterfeiting.
Counterfeit watches could be found everywhere, from your local flea market to the Internet. The number of fake watches entering the market is increasing day by day, as demand for such goods continues to grow. And this is despite efforts by luxury watch brands to stamp them out. This article will further explore the brands that fake watches victimize the most.
Going first on the list is Rolex, perhaps the most popular Swiss luxury watch brand in the market today. People typically associate Rolex with sophistication and being part of the elite. And they are not wrong about that. This watch brand, established in 1905 in London but relocated to Switzerland, is now considered to be a status symbol like Chanel, Louis Vuitton, and Apple. These brands are also victims of counterfeiters, so it’s not a surprise when they attempt to take advantage of Rolex’s reputation as well. Rolex is the brand most hurt by watch counterfeiters.
In 2010, the US immigration and customs enforcement officials seized 7,000 fake Rolex watches from Binh Cam Tran, who was able to create thousands of fake Rolex watches in his own home. Authorities were also able to find equipment in his home that could manufacture one million fake Rolex watches. He pleaded guilty to charges related to trafficking and counterfeiting and served six years of imprisonment. To send a strong message to would-be counterfeiters, US authorities crushed the 7,000 Rolex replicas they seized with a steam roller. They also ordered Binh Cam Tran to pay Rolex 2.2 million USD in damages he had done to the company’s intellectual property rights. But despite these efforts by authorities all over the world to stamp out counterfeit Rolex watches, they are still widespread all over the world.
But Rolex is not the only victim of counterfeiters all over the world. Another brand that counterfeiters victimize is Cartier, a French luxury fashion goods watch known for making popular watches such as the Panthere. Cartier has a long history of producing watches and even tiaras for members of royalty. Even King Edward VII, the King of the United Kingdom from 1901 to 1910, issued a royal warrant to Cartier in 1904. This warrant allows Cartier to advertise that they supply goods to members of royalty to the public. Similar warrants have also been issued to Cartier by the royal families of Spain, Portugal, Russia, and France. With such a stellar reputation, no one would be surprised if this well-established French brand becomes a victim to counterfeiters. Counterfeits of several Cartier watches, from the Cartier Panthere and Cartier Santos to the Cartier Tank.
A lot of articles and blogs are even dedicated to helping buyers on spotting fake Cartiers. Because of these articles, it becomes easy to spot a fake Cartier from a real one. However, that doesn’t stop counterfeiters from flooding the market with counterfeit Cartier watches. And this is due to the reputation that this French brand has developed over the years. Due to being associated with royalty, Cartier has gained a massive following from both ordinary people and members of the elite. For this reason, everyone wants to have a Cartier to get that feeling of royalty, and this created a demand for counterfeit Cartier watches that look identical to the original but do not have the quality of the true Cartier watch.
Gucci is a brand popular among millennials and the Gen Z. It has even been featured in a trap rap song and has entered modern popular culture. Gucci is also a popular target for counterfeiters. And every fake Gucci product, from bags to watches, is everywhere in both local flea markets and on the Internet. Like Rolex, Gucci is also a status symbol, especially for young people and women. Having a Gucci not only makes you look rich and famous. It also makes you look hip and trendy. Perhaps this is the reason why counterfeiters create fakes of the most popular Gucci watches and bags.
However, the good news though is just like Cartier, there are a lot of guides on the Internet warning you of fake Gucci watches. These articles and blog posts also aim to educate buyers on how to identify real Gucci timepieces from fake ones. But still, it does not stop counterfeiters from continuously pumping fake Gucci watches into the market. This is the reason to stay away from untrustworthy vendors to prevent yourself from being fooled. It is also best to know first how to identify fake Gucci watches before proceeding to buy one.
Finally, Omega is another popular Swiss watch brand that counterfeiters target every so often. Omega is known for making the watches that would soon be worn in space. It is also the official timekeeper for the Olympic Games. Because of its long history and outstanding reputation, counterfeiters have also made counterfeit Omega watches that would satisfy the demand for these watches. Replicas of watches such as the Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra could be seen in both flea markets and on the Internet. You will see fake Omega watches being sold almost everywhere along with fakes from other brands such as Rolex, Swatch, and Cartier.
How to Avoid Fake Watches
Due to the increasing numbers of brands that counterfeiters target, it now seems impossible to find a genuine watch brands from our favorite watch manufacturers. Luckily, companies and governments alike are taking steps to stop counterfeiters from further filling the market with fake watches. In the example provided earlier regarding Rolex, governments could confiscate fake timepieces, destroy them, imprison the counterfeiter, and/or order him or her to pay sums of money to the company that they targeted.
You will also see a lot of articles on the Internet guiding buyers and watch enthusiasts on identifying fake watches. While these articles contain valuable information, the best and foolproof way to avoid counterfeits is to buy from a trusted retailer only. Most watch companies have stand-alone shops while others have authorized retailers which you could find by searching on the Internet.