Just a fortnight before the Opening Ceremony and as excitement builds ahead of London 2012, the International Trademark Association (INTA) has advised fans who want to buy official Games merchandise about how to avoid being sold fake products.
British authorities have already seized thousands of counterfeit, unlicensed and fake Olympic merchandise including shirts, vests and bags from around the country as unsuspecting fans and tourists are targeted by countefeiters.
INTA is constantly trying to raise awareness amongst visitors to the capital over the pitfalls of buying sub-standard counterfeited goods, which leave purchasers with poor quality items, no comeback, and often products that have not been manufactured in accordance with the required safety standards.
"Fans from around the world will want to capture their memories of the Summer Games by purchasing memorabilia," said Alan C. Drewsen, INTA Executive Director.
"This is why we have provided these tips for shoppers. The last thing we want to see happen is the Olympic spirit tainted by a deceitful counterfeiter."
Amongst the tips being given to consumers who want to ensure they are purchasing official merchandise are the following:
- Check the official Olympic hologram on merchandise (when the hologram is tilted the logo will appear to rotate).
- Shop in official Olympic stores and on designated websites, and be wary of street vendors.
- Ensure the correct spelling of country and athlete names on merchandise.
- Do not buy items that appear to be of poor quality, that have irregular stitching or uneven colouring.
- Be cautious if products are prices unusually low.