Reseller accuses Cisco over fake gear

Cisco is not doing enough to stem the tide of counterfeit equipment, says second-hand networking gear specialist Network Hardware Resale (NHR).

Glen Fassett, general manager of Network Hardware Resale (NHR) Asia-Pacific, says the networking giant is unwilling to work with the used equipment sector in preventing fake gear getting into the channel.

Fake Cisco low-end switches, cards and components have been found in the market since 2001, Fassett said. Almost all of it is made in China, and some of it made by Cisco-certified manufacturing partners.

An FBI-led taskforce said in February this year it had seized unauthorized Cisco gear worth millons of dollars.

Fassett said Cisco had refused to work with the resellers' industry body UNEDA (United Network Equipment Dealers' Association).

'[UNEDA] has invited Cisco to engage with us and share more information on prevention. Doing so I think would help absolutely to improve the identification of and prevention of counterfeiting,' he said.

But he said while Cisco worked with US and Chinese law enforcement agencies, it had declined to work with the equipment resellers.

Fassett said resellers were well-practised in identifying Cisco equipment and were often the first to notice the arrival of fake equipment in the channel.

'We share tips and information about giveaways on fake equipment,' he said.

By contrast Cisco's regular channel partners, who were not accustomed to inspecting equipment for fakes, sometimes were on-selling counterfeit gear.

Cisco said in a statement that it was committed to working with enforcement agencies worldwide to protect customers and partners from illegally-product goods.

'We are working closely with leading business and industry groups to address the issue, including Business Action to Stop Counterfeiting And Privacy (BASCAP), the Alliance for Grey Market and Counterfeit Abatement (AGMA) and Quality Brand Protection Committee (QBPC),' the statement said.