James is a London based technology blogger and writer for The Next Web Network. Working for UK online advertising agency 20:20 Media and An James is a London based technology blogger and writer for The Next Web Network. Working for UK online advertising agency 20:20 Media and Analytics, James has a strong passion for start ups, social media, apps and the web community. He can be found writing for his personal, company and of course TNW UK blogs. Follow him via Twitter and Facebook.
UK Police have shut down 1,200 websites promoting designer clothing in what has been mooted as the UK’s biggest crack down on fraudulent sites.
The BBC are reporting that customers who purchase from these websites either receive nothing, fake goods and/or get their credit cards details stolen.
All 1,219 sites that advertise goods from designer brands such as Tiffany jewellery are believed to originate from Asia and make some considerable money out of these illegal activities.
More than 20,000 boots have been seized in the last 12 months and Nominet UK, the domain organisation worked closely with the Metropolitan’s E-crime unit to close the sites down.
The head of the Met e-crime unit, Det Supt Charlie McMurdie commented on the operation: “This is the biggest operation of its kind in the UK.
“Where people are placing their credit card details onto an internet site and that site is being controlled outside of the UK by criminal networks, then there’s the obvious potential those details will be used for other fraudulent activity.”
A few of the websites that were shut down included:
Nominet’s Nick Wenban-Smith said the the sites had been frozen and would not be able to be re-registered.
“It’s a fantastic result for UK consumers, Nominet’s mission is to make the internet a safe and more trusted place, and the UK jurisdiction has an excellent reputation.
“This is just one more example of our efforts to preserve that position,” he said.
Avoiding these situations, in my view, is not just a case of domain organisations and the Police working closely together but it’s important to educate the public on how to spot sites like these.
Identifying and communicating the tale tale signs of sites that are not authorised dealers and would never be selling those kind of goods at such an attractive rate is just as important as shutting the sites down.
Get the TNW newsletter
Get the most important tech news in your inbox each week.