Wednesday, June 23, 2010

U.S. Unveils Broad Crackdown on Piracy, Counterfeit Goods

(Jennifer Martinez — LA Times)

The government-wide effort includes adding 50 FBI agents to focus on intellectual property infringement

The Obama administration unveiled a government-wide strategy Tuesday to crack down on piracy and counterfeit goods, adding more than 50 FBI agents this year to tackle intellectual property abuses.

With the ubiquity of the Internet, online piracy and the sale of counterfeit goods on the Web are growing rapidly across a range of industries, including entertainment, software and pharmaceutical markets.

Vice President Joe Biden, who announced the new program, said that the problem costs Americans jobs and that counterfeit goods threaten lives.

“Whether we’re talking about fake drugs that hurt ... or knock-off car tires that fall apart at 65 miles per hour causing injury and death, counterfeits kill,” Biden said at a White House meeting that included Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr., Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Margaret Hamburg. Read more here.