Networking vendor Cisco has urged channel partners to purchase through accredited distribution sources after two brokers were recently charged for selling counterfeit Cisco products in the region.
The two unnamed UAE firms were found guilty of "importing, selling and possessing Cisco counterfeit products for the purpose of sale" after landing up in front of the UAE courts.
Both brokers have been ordered to pay fines, although the extent of their financial penalties remains undisclosed. Cisco has declined to comment on specific details of the case, but did confirm that the counterfeit products would be destroyed.
Rafael Perez, brand protection manager for MEA and Pakistan at Cisco, also stressed the importance of channel partners buying through official Cisco distribution sources to ensure that they are supplied with genuine products.
"Cisco partners are strongly recommended to purchase from Cisco authorised channels," he said. "Cisco is committed to working against counterfeit networks in order to protect legitimate partners and customers from negative impacts of fake products."
The current size of the counterfeiting industry for IT products is not known, although a study conducted two years ago by auditors KPMG and the Alliance for Grey Market and Counterfeit Abatement (AGMA) indicated that as much as 10% of all technology goods sold globally were not the genuine article. Based on that estimate, it's thought that more than $100 billion of global IT channel revenue could be lost to counterfeiters each year.