Do you have a counterfeit cell phone? Potential problems and spotting a counterfeit

Posted at 5:33 PM, Aug 24, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-24 19:33:15-04

The large-scale scheme behind this weeks FBI raids affected around 25,000 victims, according to the FBI. Many of them still have no idea.

Consumer electronics are in the top three items seized by U.S. Customs and Border Protection each year. The problems rising from an economic standpoint, health and safety, and even legality; as purchasing the goods supports criminal activities such as money laundering and trafficking. 

That’s not to mention the hazards they pose to consumers. One expert tells us there are concerns with spyware, that the phone may be transmitting sensitive data from the consumer to the producer.

U.S. Attorney for the District of Idaho, Bart Davis says, “Counterfeited products degrade the goodwill of Trademark holders, and pose a serious safety risk to the community."

So the best way to identify whether or not you have fallen victim, Neal Custer of Boise’s Custer Agency tells us to take note of things like your battery life, if it drops faster than normal, that could be a good clue there is spyware on the counterfeit product.

As far as others taking the device into an authorized retailer isn't a bad option, if you purchased the phone from a third party seller.

In steps to prevention of counterfeit scams, CBP also warns to simply "know who you buy from. And remember, If it seems like a steal, it is."