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Nokia nows targets low-quality counterfeit batteries
Posted on 14-Nov-2003 07:44 | Tags Filed under: News

With increasing reports of exploding mobile phone batteries, Nokia is stepping up the war on pirate products. The companys says that reported explosions were caused by counterfeit products.

At an audio conference hosted in Espoo today, Nokia outlined its battle plan in the company's ongoing war against unsafe, low-quality counterfeit products. Tens of thousands of counterfeit products have been seized in recent raids in Belgium, the United Kingdom, and other countries in the EU, bringing the total global number of seized and destroyed products in 2003 to more than 5 million. As a result of these raids, authorities gained valuable leads on a counterfeit network, enabling them to begin immediate actions against those involved.

"I want to stress that consumer safety is our top concern," said Janne Jormalainen, Vice President, Mobile Enhancements, Nokia Mobile Phones. "We believe consumers are unknowingly being fooled into buying unsafe, low-quality batteries and we are actively taking measures to combat the illegal counterfeit operation at the root of this problem."

Counterfeit batteries have also misled consumer groups. Yesterday, Test-Aankoop, a Belgian consumer group, acknowledged their recent test results which led them to announce Nokia batteries were unsafe were "most probably unreliable" due to the inclusion of counterfeit batteries in their test sample. Test-Aankoop has agreed to a new, independent test of batteries - using only Nokia original batteries -and will provide the results of these tests as soon as possible.

Today's conference included illustrations on how consumers can recognize the most obvious examples of counterfeit batteries. These examples will be posted on the website. Nokia also announced plans to unveil "aggressive, regional anti-counterfeit measures."

In response to the program, Mr. Jormalainen commented: "We are dealing with a very sophisticated enemy who has become very adept at manufacturing products, which to the average consumer appear to be Nokia original accessories. To avoid giving counterfeiters a head start on our anti-counterfeiting measures, we are purposely withholding information until such time as the program has been officially announced."

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