Alibaba Hired Top Counterfeit Investigator

Alibaba Group hired top counterfeit investigator to help removing counterfeit goods from its site. Prior to join Alibaba, Matthew Bassiur was a vice president in Pfizer Inc. and previously as senior director in Apple Inc. In both companies, he led the anti counterfeit team and Intellectual Property Rights enforcement.

Wall Street Journal reported that Matthew Bassiur will join Alibaba next month as vice president, head of global intellectual property enforcement. Alibaba apointed Bassiur following another complaint from brand owners regarding complaints for knock-off goods sold in Taobao and Tmall, the Alibaba online markets. Jack Ma, Alibaba CEO said in the statement, "Matthew's appointment is the latest step in Alibaba Group's comprehensive and industry-leading efforts to fight counterfeits."

Matthew Bassiur had a brilliant career as a computer crime and intellectual property federal prosecutor in the United States Department of Justice (DOJ). As an attorney, he dealt with many intellectual property crimes and brought them to justice. He had a huge experience in dealing with counterfeit products of pharmaceuticals products, motion pictures, luxury goods, counterfeit business software, music recordings, electronic games, and others.

Alibaba has tried to establish the appropriate masures to combat counterfeit goods from its sites. According to CNBC News, Alibaba has launched its intellectual property reporting system: TaoProtect, earlier thus year. The reporting system was made in English to ease its Western retail partners to report fake product to Alibaba.

Furthermore, Alibaba has also established a team consist of 300 people as a special unit to tackle knock-off products. Matthew Bassiur will lead the team that will combat counterfeit product in Alibaba. As for Mr. Bassiur himself, he has somewhat a familiarity with counterfeit products in China, because in 2008 he taught Intellectual Property law at Renmin University in Beijing as part of Fulbright program.

Bassiur has long experience and expertise in tackling anti-counterfeit products. Alibaba has a high expectation from him to be able to eradicate all counterfeit products from Alibaba sites, just like exactly what he did during his tenure in Apple and Pfizer. When working for Apple, Bassiur took down fake iPhone and another copyrights and trade infringement issue, while in Pfizer he successfully remove counterfeit pharmaceutical products .

Last week, U.S. Office of Trade Representative has issued a warning to Alibaba to put more efforts in battling counterfeit products. As Bloomberg  reported, Alibaba has also worked with Nike and Adidas to remove fake athletic shoes, watches and bags on Taobao and thousands of sellers have been penalized.

In order to maintain its global presence, Alibaba must put all out effort to combat counterfeit products. Appointing Matthew Bassiur as Head of Global Intellectual Property Enforcement is a good move to maintain its reputation.

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