Battery packs, printer cartridges and refrigerator water filters are just a few examples of critical consumable accessories that make appliances and devices function properly. With their limited lifespan, hundreds of millions of these consumable accessories are manufactured and sold every year. This makes these items a lucrative target for unsavory companies that want to get in on the action with their cheap knockoffs. “According to The World Health Organization (WHO), 6% to 8% of the total medical device market is comprised of counterfeit goods.” As a result, billions of dollars can be lost by their rightful owners, the OEMs, and, sometimes, consumers can be impacted by subpar quality and incompatibility with their appliances or devices. When a consumer’s experience is soured due to the use of unauthorized accessories, fingers are often wrongfully pointed at the OEMs, accusing them of building shoddy products when, in fact, the problem is caused by the knockoffs. At this point, brand equities along with the valuable trust forged between the company and its customers have already been damaged. As an OEM, one easy way that you can protect your consumable accessories is by designing into them a low-cost security chip, which protects against cloning, counterfeiting and other security breaches.
From MP3 players to smartphones to tablets, our mobile devices are becoming smarter and more connected by the day. Because these devices can do more for us, we are using them more and, as a result, need to charge them more frequently. In keeping with our on-the-go lifestyles, we’re charging our mobile devices wherever we are, often with any charging cable available. Indeed, accessories are usually a big source of revenue for equipment companies—often, a charging cable can be developed at a cost of just a few bucks but is sold for as much as $20. Some unsavory companies exploit the lack of protection on this equipment by coming out with knockoffs that sell for a fraction of the price that the equipment companies charge. Sounds great for consumers, but often, not only do the OEMs suffer from revenue loss, the consumers end up spending money on subpar products. Knockoff charging cables could result in longer charge times, have a much shorter lifespan or even damage the devices they are connected to. OEMs are also exposed to much greater liabilities by allowing knockoffs of their products to be available in the marketplace.
There’s an easy enough way for companies to protect their investment and limit their liability exposures—implementing a security chip into their designs. By choosing a turnkey security chip that is robust and easy to integrate, OEMs can protect against cloning, counterfeiting and other piracy attacks.