Amazon announced that it is bringing Project Zero to Brazil, its platform for identifying counterfeit products in the company's own marketplace. Using artificial intelligence and machine learning, the system is able to automatically remove ads for selling fake products from the air, without the brands or distributors having to make complaints about the case to the company.
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Launched in 2019, the system is available in 17 countries – along with Brazil, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, Australia, the Netherlands and Singapore have joined the new wave, among other territories. Project Zero is available to any manufacturer in these countries, as long as they follow some prerequisites that involve, among them, the official registration of your trademark with the competent authorities and the previous registration of complaints of counterfeiting with Amazon, with a fee minimum acceptance rate of 90%.
The artificial intelligence system acts both at the time of registering in the marketplace and afterwards, scanning about five billion ads a day, according to Amazon. Bar codes, record numbers and format characteristics, drawings, colors, values and other elements of a product are taken into account in an automated way, with a system that also feeds back from the positives themselves to become more and more accurate in the identification counterfeit parts.
The idea of the project, according to Amazon, is to protect customers and companies that do business through electronic commerce and facilitate the process of identifying pirated products. The general idea is that, in a system in which the originals are also sold, the counterfeits can represent a path that even deceives the customer, due to price differences and the use of images that do not correspond effectively to a potentially purchased product.
Since the launch of Project Zero, Amazon claims that more than 10,000 brands have registered on the platform, with small manufacturers and also big names from different sectors such as BMW, Veet, Salvatore Ferragamo and Arduino. Now, with the arrival in Brazil, the registration is also open to Brazilian manufacturers as long as, of course, they meet the platform requirements.
The expansion of the project follows other e-commerce anti-piracy initiatives, such as the launch in June of a group aimed at sharing with the authorities and prosecuting large manufacturers or distributors of counterfeit products. The creation of the unit was seen as a response to a report released in April by the United States government, which placed Amazon on a list of markets notorious for selling pirated and smuggled items, failing to provide the necessary protections against such sales and making it difficult to authorities and brand representatives work to identify the articles. The same document even mentions Rua 25 de Março, in downtown São Paulo (SP), as another location of the same type.
The report even speaks to Project Zero itself, stating that the system has not helped in the fight and that, even with it, the process of removing counterfeit items from the platform is still bureaucratic and slow. In response, Amazon denied the accusations and said the report was politically intended, being the object of a personal attack by Donald Trump against the company's founder, Jeff Bezos, who also owns the American newspaper The Washington Post, notoriously opposed to acting of the president.