Has the problem of counterfeit components become a cancer of the electronic industry
not long ago, there were many incidents about the circulation of counterfeit amd chips in the market, including a report on the PC gamer station that two consumers ordered ryzen 71700 processors from Amazon station respectively, but received the chips incorrectly identified as Intel
dylan McGrath, editor in chief of EE times USA, contacted Amazon with the development trend of automobile lightweight to promote the growth in this field, and EE Times Asia also tried to ask AMD and Intel for their views; Unfortunately, Amazon and AMD did not respond until the deadline. An Intel spokesman replied to a very official statement, saying: "we occasionally find counterfeit or deliberately misbranded Intel products. When this happens, we will cooperate with the relevant authorities to clarify the situation."
according to our exchanges with industry leaders from all over the world, we found that the problem of counterfeit semiconductor components is widespread, but there is no sign of relief, which will have a negative impact on the global market and the entire industry; For example, India's Central Bureau of investigation (CBI) accused an Indian broker of colluding with Chinese counterfeit component suppliers to use counterfeit products in roller bearings purchased for military artillery
according to the report of the verge at the end of July, there were also suspected counterfeits when searching Amazon for sunglasses; Although sunglasses are relatively simple products compared with microprocessors and gun roller bearings, if counterfeit solar glasses can not effectively block strong light, users' eyesight may be damaged. Amazon did not respond to this report
both Amazon and China's Alibaba/Taobao online stores have policies on banning the sale of counterfeit goods, but the question is how helpful this can be? Caixin, a Chinese media, reported in March that although the parent company Alibaba PPG was listed on the New York Stock Exchange (Stock Code: PPG) and claimed that they had closed 180000 stores selling counterfeit products and removed 380million counterfeit products within 12 months, several cheap Rolex watches were still found in Taobao online stores
in the report of EE times US Edition, Lisa maestas, who is responsible for the task of cracking down on counterfeits at the American semi torque peak conductor Industry Association (SIA), said that components such as microprocessors should preferably be purchased through officially authorized channels, and this proposal is also applicable to any kind of luxury goods, such as Rolex watches. Would you really feel relieved to buy them at Taobao store
ee Times Asia also contacted Jason Teo, the Asia Pacific corporate security director of Infineon Technologies, to try to understand the severity and impact of the problem of counterfeit components; He said that to discuss the issue of "counterfeits", it is very important to first understand what it means to the original manufacturers of components. At present, the so-called counterfeits in the market mainly fall into two categories:
one is the counterfeiting of components, including "complete fakes" and "partial fakes". The former refers to those components that are not produced by the original factory, but are attached with the laser label of the original factory, which makes the uninformed buyer think that they are genuine goods; The latter refers to those parts and components that are indeed manufactured by the original factory, but are identified as products with higher level or different functions than the original components
the other is to fake the product packaging. This kind of counterfeit product does not disguise the original product with a fake mark on the components, but pastes a fake label on the outer packaging of the shipment. As long as the buyer opens the box, it can be found that it is a fake product
according to the statistics of the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol), counterfeit electronic and semiconductor components worth up to US $169billion are circulating in the global market every year; Unlike those counterfeit brand-name bags or shoes, counterfeit electronic components may harm the health of end consumers or the infrastructure of national cities, and the corporate image of component suppliers will also be impacted and suffer financial losses
for example, Teo said that the impact of counterfeit chips is as small as the smooth operation of E-sports PC, which roughly threatens the life safety of users: "if the USB portable disk is broken, at most the data stored in it is missing; but if the IC of the car's braking system or airbag control system is faulty, or even the chip of medical devices such as heart rhythm regulators is faulty, it may be life-threatening."
and TEO stressed that unlike counterfeit drugs that may affect only one user, the harm of counterfeit chips will extend to all people around; For example, if a counterfeit chip in a home appliance device causes a fire, the entire building where the home is located may be damaged; If the chip that detects the safety of the nuclear reactor or starts the alarm system fails, the impact is even more difficult to estimate
how does the industry counter counterfeiting
teo said that at present, the World Semiconductor Council has invited major semiconductor manufacturers to set up a working group called "anti counterfeiting task force (actf) to cooperate with competent authorities of various countries to help identify crimes and strengthen relevant laws and regulations. Actf also shared some best practices, including appropriate component scrapping methods to cut off the outflow of obsolete components with registered trademarks; There is also lobbying for the relevant government authorities to promote closer cooperation between the public and private sectors
Teo pointed out that there have been some achievements in the above work. For example, the European anti fraud Office (Olaf) has locked the case of importing counterfeit semiconductor components from China and Hong Kong to EU countries by mail. However, he also pointed out that the reason why counterfeit chips are rampant comes from the high demand of buyers and the lack of security awareness: "the international road makes it very easy to sell counterfeit chips and also increases the difficulty of blocking the global circulation of counterfeit chips."
in addition, in many countries, a furnace of steel is 150 tons, so it is not illegal to recycle IC from scrap PCBs, so criminal groups selling counterfeit components all over the world can easily obtain a stable supply source of second-hand chips, and then re label these second-hand chips as counterfeit manufacturers; At present, countries around the world have not strictly implemented the laws on waste disposal of electronic products. Criminal groups can also find cheap manpower in many countries to dispose of second-hand chips to meet their needs
as early as may2012, there were substantial reports that the U.S. government found counterfeit components worth more than $1million in the supply chain of the Ministry of defense, and more than 70% of those counterfeit components originated from China; Since then, relevant government units and the industry should have some cooperation with Olaf, but according to the report released earlier this year by Greg wood, director of the electronic parts Department of IHS Markit, a market research institution, more than 53% of the defective or counterfeit electronic components found in Asia, Africa and the Middle East are still from China