Fake or counterfeit products had been Amazon’s nemesis for the past years. The Counterfeit Report estimated that 13 percent of the products sold on Amazon are fake. Amazon in its latest annual report actually identified counterfeiting as a risk factor that could have a negative impact on their sales. Not only businesses but consumers are also affected by the abundance of counterfeit products online. Because of this, Amazon had introduced a solution to this ongoing problem, which they called, Project Zero.
The name Project Zero came from the intent to help drive counterfeit sales to zero. Project Zero offers three main things to brands that will participate in it; Automated Projections, Self-Service Counterfeit Removal, and Product Serialization.
With automated projections, brands will need to provide logos, trademarks, and other key data points about their brands. Amazon will then use this data to scan over 5 billion daily product listings and proactively remove suspected counterfeits. Amazon has even reported that their automated projections proactively stop 100 times more suspected counterfeit products than what it removed based on reports from brands.
Previously, brands who had seen fake versions of their products would need to report a counterfeit to Amazon, which will then be acted upon after being investigated and evaluated. With Project Zero, brands will have a self-service counterfeit removal tool which will give them the ability to directly remove products from Amazon without their approval. Brands will no longer need to contact Amazon to remove a counterfeit listing which is a huge plus.
The program also offers an optional product serialization service. Amazon will have companies put a unique and exclusive Amazon serial code on their products during manufacturing which will then allow Amazon to scan and confirm that products are authentic before it even leaves the warehouse. This service though will cost between $0.01 and $0.05 per unit, depending on volume.
Brands such as Vera Bradley, Thunderworks, Kenu, and ChomChom Roller have already tested out Project Zero and gave the project positive feedback. Kenu CEO, Ken Minn, even said that the product serialization service has been a game changer for them.
For now, Project Zero is an invite-only experience. However, interested brands can sign up to a Project Zero waitlist on their website.