Metropolitan Police reveal anti-counterfeiting project

A project designed to limit equipment that organised criminals use in counterfeiting scams has been revealed by the Metropolitan Police.Project Genesius, which has been running for two years, seeks to encourage the printing industry to sign up to a voluntary code of conduct, to prevent printing equipment and technologies falling into the wrong hands.

A project designed to limit equipment that organised criminals use in counterfeiting scams has been revealed by the Metropolitan Police.

Project Genesius, which has been running for two years, seeks to encourage the printing industry to sign up to a voluntary code of conduct, to prevent printing equipment and technologies falling into the wrong hands.

Detective chief inspector Nick Downing said at a press conference in New Scotland Yard on Tuesday that the Met would like anyone selling or reselling specialist printing equipment to profile customers.

"Customer profiling is vitally important," said Downing.

Indicators which should raise suspicions if taken together include: if it is a cash only purchase; if there is no delivery address; no invoice required; if purchasers don't quibble about the price; no company name; if it is delivered to a residential address.

In response to a question from ZDNet UK, Downing conceded that a manufacturer or reseller's primary concern was to sell the equipment, but added that the Met would be grateful to the printing industry if it kept its eyes open.

"Yes, their number one priority is business," said Downing. "But we all have a responsibility to make sure [the industry] is selling products in a responsible, safe way."

Project Genesius has resulted in the seizure of hundreds of printers and specialist equipment, the Met said in a press statement on Tuesday.