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“Fake chargers” ; The multi-million dollar counterfeit industry on Instagram

Many social media platforms change to e-commerce to benefit from their huge user foundation, the usage of forged sales online worries them persistently. It has been highlighted in the latest report by a cybersecurity researcher, triggered by a near-death experience he encountered with one such commodity.

Andrea Stroppa, a cybersecurity researcher who works at Ghost Data Team, endured a life alarm due to one such false Apple product. As stated in a Bloomberg report, Stroppa had used a friend’s iPhone charger that exploded while being used last year. Stroppa’s friend had purchased the charger from an unauthorized channel on Instagram.The event staggered Stroppa into action, which, along with his crew, began examining the availability of such goods online. Gathering their results in a soon-to-be-released statement, the Ghost Data Team noticed that such bogus goods are being traded openly on Facebook and Instagram. The research emphasizes unrestricted trade and how such social media platforms have failed to stop it. “Our study aims at exposing Instagram’s difficulties, or unwillingness, to properly address its long-standing counterfeit market and also to highlight the many dangers of such illicit business for Apple and consumers alike,” the researchers said.

The team found that fake Apple products, including AirPods, lightning cables, USB power adapters, as well as iPhone batteries, are being marketed on Facebook and Instagram. The counterfeit goods are alike to the original, sans, of course, the quality and security measures. To harvest sales, such goods are normally traded at about a 10 times lesser value than the real products. Made in illegal factories in China, the products are aimed at markets like the US and Europe and have been arranged to build a multimillion-dollar global business today.

Gathering their findings in the statement, the team suggests that around 163 wholesale sellers of counterfeit Apple accessories were live on Instagram from February 8 to March 8. These accounts uploaded 50,000 sales posts in the last year, reaching around 600,000 likes and comments. The most desired products among these were were Apple AirPods Pro, Apple MagSafe Charger, and other accessories. The team presently blames Facebook for not holding a sign on its businesses through its platforms. Facebook is “guilty of failing to adequately invest and protect American businesses and citizens around the world who use its platform,” it remarks.

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In a reply, a Facebook representative said that the sale of such spurious goods on Instagram infringes the company’s policies. “While there’s always more work to do, we now regularly respond to reports of counterfeit content within one day, and often within a matter of hours.”The fresh findings can more fuel the continuing conflict between Apple and Facebook. The two US majors now argue over an imminent iOS 14 updates that will place a limit on data collection by Facebook for its targeted ads. Facebook attacks Apple by bringing in the move for preserving its revenue streams and reducing competition.



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