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2012 Intellectual Property (IP) Crime Statistics

  • From 2005 to 2012, the RCMP has seen an upward trend in the number of documented cases involving counterfeit and pirated goods.
  •  There is a noticeable yearly increase in the number of occurrences involving harmful counterfeit products from 11.5% in 2005 to 30.4% in 2012.
  • In 2012, the RCMP reported a total of 726 occurrences, a slight decrease from the previous year due to other priority cases drawing upon federal resources. 
  • Commodity types most frequently documented by the RCMP in 2012 were apparel and footwear, accounting for 45% of all goods seized, followed by audio-visual and copyrighted works at 20%. 
  • In 2012, over 200 cases of harmful counterfeit products were investigated, including commodities such as toys, pharmaceuticals, perfume, integrated circuits, makeup, headphones, wheel bearings, cellular phones, and batteries. 
  • The majority of RCMP enforcement of IP crime occurs in Ontario, Quebec and British Columbia and more specifically in Canada’s three largest cities: Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver, which are also key entry points to the Canadian marketplace.
  • Of all IP-infringing goods seized in Canada in 2012, where the origin was identified by the RCMP, China (including Hong Kong SAR China) remains the primary source country.  Other source countries for counterfeit goods seized in 2012 were India, Pakistan, the United-States and Thailand.
  • The total retail value of seizures of counterfeit and pirated goods has increased from over $24 million in 2010 to over $38 million in 2012. (The large seizure value in 2011 was due to project O-Scorpion accounting for over $43 million of the total retail value seized).

Types of Commodity Seized in 2012

Types of Commodity Seized in 2011
  • Apparel and Footwear: 45%
  • Copyrighted Works: 20%
  • Consumer Electronics: 9%
  • Personal Care Products: 9%
  • Pharmaceuticals: 6%
  • Other Products: 4%
  • Toys: 4%
  • Electrical Products: 3%

Total Retail Value of Seizures of IP Infringing Goods

Total Retail Value of Seizures of IP Infringing Goods

*Project O-Scorpion accouting for $43,827,460 of the total retail value of 2011 seizures.


  • 2005: $7,679,910
  • 2006: $13,461,390
  • 2007: $13,514,280
  • 2008: $29,317,265
  • 2009: $18,656,231
  • 2010: $24,296,401
  • 2011: $67,509,692
  • 2012: $38,102,195

Percentages of Occurrences Involving Harmful Products

Percentages of Occurrences Involving Harmful Products
  • 2005: 11.2%
  • 2006: 14.2%
  • 2007: 14.8%
  • 2008: 13.7%
  • 2009: 18.1%
  • 2010: 21.8%
  • 2011: 25.8%
  • 2012: 30.4%

Counterfeiting is a serious problem because:

  • Counterfeit products threaten Canada’s economic integrity by funding illegal economic activity and contribute to the growth of organized crime.
  • Counterfeiters aim to produce their products at the lowest costs, forgoing safety regulations, certifications and quality controls, in order to maximize profits. They do not care about the health and safety of consumers.
  • Counterfeits are un-tested and often manufactured in unsanitary conditions. These products have been found to contain dangerous toxins and contaminants that are harmful to health.
  • Counterfeit electrical products are a serious risk for causing shock, explosion, or fires.