CBP has many duties. One is to deal with counterfeits and intellectual property violations in international trade. Trademark owners can record their registered trademarks with Customs who will then help monitor imports at the border.
I was fortunate to receive a tour in December of the National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center in Arlington, Virgina, along with Associate Mark Donahey and intern Dwight Greene. See photos below. The Center coordinates communications and action between a number of government agencies and departments that have an interest in intellectual property protection, counterfeiting, and securing our borders. And the IPR Center has a great slogan: Protection is Our Trademark.
Here are some of the interesting details from the 2011 report:
The total number of IPR seizures in FY 2011 increased by 24% compared to FY 2010, which is a 325% increase over the past decade.
• The domestic value of all IPR seizures in FY 2011 decreased by 5.2% compared to FY 2010.
• The number of low-value (under $1,000) IPR seizures in FY 2011 increased by 3,872 over FY 2010. This increase in low-value seizures accounts for 80% of the overall increase in seizures for FY 2011.
• The average domestic value for an IPR seizure dropped to $7,193 in FY 2011 from $9,425 in FY 2010.
• In FY 2011, the number of seizures at mail and express courier facilities increased by 16% compared to FY 2010,
To read the full report, see here.