Overcoming Scams and Counterfeits

This article was originally published in The Connector magazine.

With the proliferation of the internet and more media outlets, the opportunity for scams and misinformation grows. Certainly, as scams and misinformation proliferate, entrepreneurs are finding more and more ways to combat these issues in automated ways.

For example, advertising proliferates the internet and, at least at times, advertising appears to a user as clickable.  When clicked, the advertiser may become responsible for a fee. This process has led to fraudulent clicks, which in turn has led to clever entrepreneurs developing and implementing procedures to detect fraudulent clicks before a fee is incurred.

Similarly, there are circumstances where a user wants to avoid objectionable content being received. In one example, Facebook has filed for patent protection for automatedly determining when content should be flagged and not delivered. This same patent technology may be usable to determining, in an automated way, whether the content of a posting is not truthful.

In another example, technology is being used to identify counterfeits in apparel and drugs. At times, goods may be encoded and the encoding may become visible under certain conditions, such as UV light. Late in 2016, a patent was granted for detecting a counterfeit pharmaceutical by exposing the product to different wavelengths of light and determining any response.

Entrepreneurs and inventors can take advantage of scammers and others producing questionable goods by creating and deploying products and services to counteract these forces. And, of course, these countering products and services have the potential to be patented.