Counterfeit handbags … watches … “the real McCoy”

Handbags, books, baby formula, shampoo, auto and aircraft parts, pharamceuticals, electrical cords, audio CDs … the list of counterfeit goods goes on and on …

Knockoff designer goods and other fake products not only cost the city millions of dollars, but may also fund terrorism. Helping to bust these counterfeit rings is an army of “secret shoppers.”

Spies Like Us,” by Jane Borden, Photographs by Timothy Fadek, Time Out NY, August 12-19, 2004

In 1872, inventor Elijah McCoy patented a lubricating system designed to prevent overheating and seizing on steam engines. His lubricators worked extremely well, saving the shipping lines and railroads lots of money. The success and popularity of McCoy’s device soon brought many copies, which cost far less but didn’t work nearly as well. These fakes created costly problems for purchasers, who believed they were saving money. Those who wanted to use a genuine product to ensure quality and dependability asked for McCoy’s product by name. Thus was born the phrase “the real McCoy.”

Counterfeit Parts: A Poor Fit for Your Shop,” by Tom Nash, MOTOR, January 2004

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