The Global Anti-Counterfeiting Awards 2016

(Sponsored by the Global Anti-Counterfeiting Group and Managing Intellectual Property)

2016 sees the eighteenth year of the Global Anti-Counterfeiting Awards judged annually by delegates from Managing Intellectual Property, the GACG Network Members and representatives of previous winners (see background note).  The 2016 Awards ceremony will be held in Paris, France on 8th June 2015 on World Anti-Counterfeiting Day.

Nominations to be submitted by Friday 6th May 2016

Nomination Form is available here


There were a record number of nominations for the 2015 GAC Awards and the judges had to draw on years of wisdom to decide the winners.  Police organisations – national and international - were broadly supported.  But all winners demonstrate the value of co-operation between sectors and the effectiveness of multilateral public private co-operation...


Record nominations for 2015 GAC Awards:  Police forces are the cream of the crop! There were a record number of nominations for the 2015 GAC Awards announced today and the judges had to draw on years of wisdom to decide the winners.  Police organisations – national and international - were broadly supported.  But all winners demonstrate the value of co-operation between sectors and the effectiveness of multilateral public private co-operation.

The winners of the seventeenth annual Global Anti-Counterfeiting Awards, sponsored by Reconnaissance International’s Authentication News and the Global Anti-Counterfeiting Group (GACG) Network were announced in Paris today on World Anti-Counterfeiting Day.  The awards were made as a continuing recognition of special achievements by organisations, companies and individuals.  The winners (details in attached note) announced today, are:

National Public Body Award
Public Order Department
Ministry of Public Security
People’s Republic of China

International Public Body Award
Intellectual Property Crime Unit
(Focal Point COPY)

Company AwardGlobal Brand Protection

Association Award
BASCAP - An initiative of the International Chamber of Commerce

Media Award
"Turn Back Crime” - Interpol

Authentication User Award
Investigation and Enforcement Directorate
National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) Nigeria

Special Award for Lifetime Individual Achievement
David Butler GSK

John Anderson, Chairman of the GACG Network of national and regional anti-counterfeiting organisations said “The awards this year again highlight the wide range of co-operation that is needed – and provided - by different organisations and individuals and especially across the public/private sector divide, in the campaign against the international trade in fakes. I am especially impressed once again with the emphases on both co-ordination between the public and private sectors and the importance of raising public awareness that was evident in many of the nominations.”

Dr Mark Deakes of Reconnaissance International, publisher of Authentication News said “We are proud to sponsor and participate in the annual GAC awards. The process of nomination, judging and presentation of the awards highlights the challenges of anti-counterfeiting organisations and IPR enforcement. The activities recognised here all demonstrate the success of a strategic collaborative approach between public and private sector organisations, which integrates legal mechanisms, investigation, enforcement, authentication solutions and communications.

The awards presentations were made in Paris on 24th June at the Museé de Contrefaçon, housed at the Headquarters of the Union des Fabricants (Unifab) on World Anti-Counterfeiting Day. Some of the award winners were present to receive their prizes.

For further information contact:

Reconnaissance International
Mark Deakes
Phone: +44 1932 785680
Mobile: +44 777492717

GACG Network
John Anderson
+44 20 7152 4479
+44 77 71860101

Note to Editors: Details of 2015 Award Winners

National Public Body: 
The Public Order Department, Ministry of Public Security, People’s Republic of China has been awarded for initiating a nationwide enforcement operation against IP infringements and shoddy quality goods which focusses on food and drugs crimes.  In 2014 they successfully investigated 132,000 criminal cases involving manufacturing and selling counterfeiting which resulted in 90,00 arrests.  A key success was continuation and in 2014 21,000 criminal case were investigated and 30,000 suspects arrested with a follow op exercise to put in place a long-term mechanism against food and drugs crime.  The operation involved effective cooperation across public agencies and with the appropriate IPR holding companies including members of the QBPC.  A final success of the project was the successful use of media to raise public awareness including online Q & As, media interviews, exhibitions and education events.

International Public Body:
Intellectual Property Crime Unit, (Focal Point COPY), EUROPOL was established in 2008. Since 2014 Focal Point COPY is the co-driver of the EMPACT priority on commodity counterfeiting.  The core objective of  FP Copy is operational activities and live investigations and bringing together all key players such as police, customs, judicial authorities, regulatory agencies and the private sector. It plays a key role in international operations and investigations both within the EU and in third countries.  Recent significant operations include OPSON, Operation VIGORALI, IOS (Operation In Our Sites) and support to Operation PANGEA, an Interpol lead operation.  FP Copy organised and supported the organisation of a number of special events and papers related to the fight against IP Crimes and recently published a joint report on IPR Infringements in the EU with the EU Observatory on Infringements of IPRs.

Global Brand Protection, NIKE Inc. has been at the forefront of successful brand owner IPR protection for many years not only on its own case but in co-operation with other industry partners and especially as  strong supporters of national and international IPR enforcement associations.  In many cases representatives of NIKE play a leading role in the governance of such groups.  In the recent past and at a specific level there are two examples of that success:  In France, thanks to the fantastic work of the local person in charge, each year NIKE represents most of the customs seizures.  One other significant example of the many actions carried out every year is the action in Muletown in Guangxi province, China.  This recent coordinated action resulted in significant seizures.  Raids on three factories at once and more than one million football jerseys seized.  The NIKE Chinese team acts against factories and export containers on a daily basis.

BASCAP (Business Action to Stop Counterfeiting and Piracy) is an initiative of the ICC, the International Chamber of Commerce and has been increasing the level of its activities both at the pure international level of lobbying and presenting strategic research such as on Free Trade Zones, Seizures of Criminal Assets for IP Infringements, and Security of supply chains, and with focussed bilateral co-operation in countries such as India, Turkey and Ukraine where significant research reports on the state of IP enforcement are presented to governments and industry.  BASCAP has also developed a leading public awareness co-ordination focus and made the tools of its own campaign available for use by other organisations and authorities.

Media: "Turn Back Crime” by Interpol is a major targeted campaign developed to highlight how members of the public could unwittingly be funding organised crime by buying counterfeit goods and focussing on combatting counterfeiting and piracy by training law enforcement agencies, encouraging them to be more proactive, organising international operations targeting the movement and production of counterfeit goods.  A major objective has been the use of effective co-operation in anti-counterfeiting and anti-piracy activity with greater emphasis on cross agency operations and the involvement of the relevant private sector companies and organisations.

Authentication User: Investigation and Enforcement Directorate, National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, (NAFDAC) Nigeria has made significant progress towards eradicating counterfeit drugs.  In line with their efforts they helped to promote Africa’s first Mobile Authentication Services (MAS).  The service uses an already well-established infrastructure – mobile technology – to empower consumers to avoid dangerous counterfeit drugs.  By revealing a unique code found on the drug packaging and texting the code to a special number the consumer can get instant verification that their product is genuine.  NAFDAC has mandates this process and seriously reduced the instances of dangerous health risks for all citizens.

Special Award for Lifetime Individual Achievement: The premature death of David Butler, Head of Anti-Counterfeiting GSK (Glaxo Smith Kline) has robbed the IPR enforcement community of one of its most influential and effective operators especially in the international arena.  He was Vice-Chair of the AIM Anti-Counterfeiting committee before he died but had already made a mark with the WCO, WHO and Interpol.  He led GSKs global anti-counterfeiting enforcement programme and worked closely with other industry organisations in the UK, Europe and internationally. For the past two years David was seconded to GSK China in Beijing then Shanghai where he focussed on strengthening anti-counterfeiting activities. One notable statistic is that he alone has been responsible for training of in excess of 10,000 law enforcement and customs officers around the world.

The Global Anti-Counterfeiting Awards are presented for outstanding achievement by organisations, companies or individuals involved in combating counterfeiting and piracy, either to protect their own brands or products or in the development of an environment which encourages the combating of counterfeits and pirate products. The Awards are given in seven categories – National Public Body, International Public Organisation, Company, Association, Authentication User, Media and Individual Achievement,

Counterfeit and pirated goods could cost the global economy up to €1 trillion per year according to some estimates, and this translates into loss of legal employment, lack of investment in new jobs and increased prices of legal goods. It also means less public funding for services such as health, education and social welfare.  Many organisations, companies and individuals are taking effective action against these illicit, dangerous and sub-standard goods to protect consumers, promote investment in new jobs and increase government revenues, and to combat the involvement of organised crime.  Some of them ‘go the extra mile’ and the GAC awards are recognition of these outstanding performances.

The awards are open to nominations from anyone with an interest in brand protection, anti-counterfeiting, and anti-piracy activities, particularly in the international context, ensuring a wide spread of nominations from across the world. The awards are judged by a panel from Reconnaissance International, the GACG Network, and representatives of previous award winners.

World Anti-Counterfeiting Day also now in it seventeenth year, was established by the GACG Network members to enable the organisation of local, national and regional events under the umbrella of an international campaign which could focus on the particular problems of counterfeiting and piracy in the countries or regions involved.  The WAC Day events are usually held on the same day in summer each year but are individually organised by the national or regional associations themselves who may or may not take up themes suggested by the GACG or being used by other associations.  In 2015, some events have already taken place on World IP Day – 26th April – in Germany for example, and many more are expected to co-incide with the event organised in Paris by the Union des Fabricants – in Nigeria and Norway.  There have also been related events in several other countries including Ukraine, Finland and Spain.