Blockchain Anti-Counterfeiting Trials ‘Promising,’ EU Agency Says

The European Union's intellectual property office EUIPO wants traders and customs authorities to use open-source tools to authenticate branded goods.

AccessTimeIconJun 16, 2023 at 2:26 p.m. UTC

Blockchain-based anti-counterfeiting tools show promise, the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) said in a Monday post, after a trial involving brands, border control and logistics operators.

EUIPO has finalized a proof of concept "having engaged in real-life operational tests with four brands, two logistics operators and a customs authority,” following a months-long trial, which showed “promising results,” the agency said of an initiative now known as European Logistics Services Authentication (ELSA), based on a separate project known as the European Blockchain Services Infrastructure (EBSI).

EUIPO, an EU agency based in Alicante, Spain, is hoping to develop an open-source platform this year to ensure each link in the trade supply chain can track products and check they’re authentic.

Using distributed ledger technology to fight fakes isn’t a new idea, but hasn't been successful in practice. Proponents of the EUIPO project say by using open source technology it can avoid the fate of unduly centralized systems like IBM’s TradeLens, which last November announced it was winding down.

EUIPO says counterfeits amount to 2.5% of global trade, worth around 412 billion euros ($451 billion).

Edited by Sandali Handagama.


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Jack Schickler

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