Meta’s two largest platforms Facebook and Instagram are two of the biggest hotspots for counterfeit goods, according to Reuters.
The two platforms’ range of private messaging tools give counterfeiters the perfect platform to reach users.
Academics interviewed by Reuters have likened brands’ attempts at policing social media services as a game of “whack-a-mole”.
“Facebook and Instagram are the key marketplaces where counterfeit goods get sold to members of the public. It used to be eBay 10 years ago, and Amazon five years ago,” counterfeiting and smuggling expert Benedict Hamilton told Reuters.
A research study conducted by social media analytics firm Ghost Data showed 26,000 active counterfeiters selling imitations of luxury brands including Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Fendi, Prada and Chanel on Facebook.
The study also found more than 20,000 active counterfeiters’ accounts on Instagram, up from its count the previous year but down from a 2019 peak when they identified about 56,000 accounts.
Approximately 65% of the accounts found in 2021 were based in China, followed by 14% in Russia and 7.5% in Turkey.
A Meta spokesperson added: “The sale of counterfeits and fraud is a problem that has always persisted with new technology.
“We are getting better every day at stopping these sales and cracking down on fraudsters.”