Bearing makers jointly attack fakes

The World Bearing Association, founded in 2006 by the American Bearing Manufacturers' Association, the Federation of European Bearing Manufacturers' Association, and the Japan Bearing Industrial Association, has created an Anti-Counterfeiting Committee.

While there has been much reporting in the general press about consumers being taken advantage of by counterfeits in music, film, home electronics and designer clothing, a far greater risk lies in industrial counterfeiting of items such as tyres, seals and bearings. Many these products are safety-critical. Hence, fake versions pose a real threat.

"Our initiative is aimed at sensitizing the public on the dangers associated with counterfeits," says James W. Griffith, WBA president and president and chief executive officer of The Timken Company. "The WBA is thus intensifying its anti-counterfeiting initiatives – that means information for customers on the one hand and consistent prosecution of offenders through the competent authorities on the other."
The WBA anti-counterfeiting information campaign will reach out to various audiences through e-mails, Web banners, social media and the campaign site, On the site, interested consumers can learn more about threats imposed by illegal counterfeiting and what is being done to stop it.

The Schaeffler Group with its bearing brands INA and FAG has successfully been fighting against counterfeiting for many years. "We are seeking close contact with public authorities and we are cooperating closely with associations and other industrial companies in order to draw public attention to this issue time and time again. In doing so, we strictly adhere to a consistent zero tolerance strategy. This means that we examine and pursue each and every case, also seemingly petty offenses - worldwide!", says Dr. Juergen M. Geissinger, President and CEO of Schaeffler Group.

SKF's efforts to combat the problem were the subject of much of Eureka's November 2009 cover feature story, "Spot the difference?".

Tom Shelley

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