Day 10 of avoiding Christmas scams – The perfect handbag?

Stuck for a present idea for a new and dear one? Thankfully, this email just arrived into my inbox just in time and as my wife never fails to remind me, a women can never have enough handbags. And this seems such a bargain, 85% off a Michael Kors handbag too!

Michael Kors is a well-known designer and would be included in the luxury folder if we were categorising fashion and apparel. Because of this, the products such as handbags are seen as aspirational, a tick in the box for the brand holder, but also a nightmare when it comes to protecting intellectual property.

This short post can not do justice to the murky world of luxury item counterfeiting but it can give a few pointers for things to look out for.

In this instance the heading of the email deliberately avoids using the brand name, using “MK” instead. It uses words such as “cheap” and “discount” which would grab the eye of a bargain hunter, but would very rarely be used by luxury brand owners who want to keep the air of respectability and exclusivity about their product.

The email itself has a call to action to visit the “official online store” which is resolving to a domain name that was registered in November 2020. On that website there is a section called “About Us”, which is blank. It also has phrases such as “thanks alot!” and “We are doing Factory Outlet via internet”

Michael Kors official websites (michaelkors.com and .co.uk) tone and lexicon reflects their brand. They have copy editors who review the language and do not use phrases like those above.

Don’t be part of the problem with counterfeiting by buying fakes. Be part of the solution and if you do see any emails like this, report it to the brand direct for them to action (in this case, details on how to report counterfeit items to Michael Kors can be found here).

If it looks too good to be true, it probably is.

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