Global Anti-Counterfeiting Award to Senior Customs Officer Lasse Ryyttäri
The Global Anti-Counterfeiting Group (GACG) Network has presented an award to Mr Lasse Ryyttäri, Senior Customs Officer, for his long-term involvement with anti-counterfeiting work.The 2017 Global Anti-Counterfeiting Awards were announced in Paris on 7 June 2017 on World Anti-Counterfeiting Day.
In Finland, Mr Lasse Ryyttäri, Senior Customs Officer, has played a central role in anti-counterfeiting cooperation and in increasing the exchange of information between authorities and rights holders. The Finnish Anti-Counterfeiting Group (FACG) recommended Mr Ryyttäri for the award. The FACG is a member of the Global Anti-Counterfeiting Group (GACG) Network, which has 21 member organisations covering more than 40 countries.
Mr Ryyttäri has been active in organising meetings in cooperation with the FACG and the Copyright Information and Anti-Piracy Centre in Finland. He has also organised several international seminars and training meetings e.g. with the Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, Russian, Estonian and US customs administrations. Mr Ryyttäri was involved with anti-counterfeiting work in 2002–2014, but as his other duties have increased, the responsibilities have been reorganised. In addition to his new duties, Mr Ryyttäri has ensured that the cooperation with trademark owners and trademark agencies continues and facilitated the processing of issues concerning counterfeit cigarettes, vehicle parts and medicines as well as questions concerning cooperation.
According to Mr Ryyttäri, consumer information plays a key role in raising awareness of counterfeit products.
“Consumers must still be reminded of the risks associated with online shopping as well as of the harmful effects and dangers of counterfeit products on health and the economy. The profits from counterfeit products usually end up benefiting organised crime, which harms legal business activities and means losses for trademark owners and loss of tax revenue for society.”
The health risks associated with counterfeit products concern especially medicines, vehicle spare parts, cigarettes, electric appliances and, increasingly, foodstuffs.
In recent years, counterfeiters have taken a radical shift from deliveries of large consignments to deliveries directly to consumers, i.e. international postal and express consignments, which are challenging for customs enforcement.
“To facilitate the control of international parcel flows, we do need new, modern technology such as AI and 3D scanning, and better availability of advance information. However, in addition to technology, we always require human input in taking the required measures.”