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5 Tips for Detecting Counterfeit Electronic Parts

Advanced technology and growing global connectedness has increased the incidences of counterfeit parts in recent years. Your company is counting on you to make sure the electronic components for your project are the genuine article at the lowest price. Unknowingly using counterfeit parts puts not only your project in jeopardy, but could cost you your job. When you receive an order of electronic parts from a supplier, examine the components to make sure they are the real deal.

Here are some tips for spotting a counterfeit part:

1. Examine the logo and graphic. Compare the artwork and graphics on the product itself to the manufacturer’s official logo. Take a close look at the color and other markings. Even if the logo matches, look to see if the crispness of the graphic is not as sharp as the original. The use of a microscope is helpful in pinpointing the tiniest detail.

2. Look for smooth surfaces. Does the electronic component have small scratch marks that could have been made by a sander? This is a sign that a part number or logo has been scratched off and a new one painted on top to fool the customer. Also look for chips and cracks.

3. Use acetone to test for blacktopping. This test may work for older counterfeit parts, but counterfeiters have gotten wise to this practice and have devised other methods on which acetone does not work.

4. Read for translation errors. In addition to the electronic component itself, examine the packaging and read all written materials and packaging slips. Check the language used to see if the grammar, spelling, and word usage are correct. Genuine electronic components from a well-renown manufacturer will not have language mistakes in their communications!

5. Check the functioning of the part. This test isn’t fool-proof. Sometimes counterfeits work initially, but their life is short. Testing each part is highly time consuming when ordering a large quantity of parts. Because counterfeiters have become more cunning in recent years, these tips will only work for detecting a small portion of counterfeit electronic components.

There is a better way to protect your project from counterfeit parts.

When you order from USBid, Inc. the parts you receive have already been carefully examined at our AAA Test Lab. We understand that you do not have the time or the necessary equipment to test for counterfeits. That’s why we have gone the extra step to ensure that you will have the genuine part that you need.

Are you in need of electronic components? We have a caring sales team ready to work with you so you confidently order what you need for a good price and in a timely manner.


Author   by Admin
  April 28, 2017


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USBid, Inc. sells PC Board level electronic components to thousands of customers worldwide. Our part directory contains SKUs of inventory from OEMs and Distributors around the globe, providing the resources to meet all your sourcing needs.

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