Counterfeit shoe imports reach $1tn a year

The global fake footwear market accounts for over $1tn a year and, while some consumers feel that buying fake designer goods is a victimless crime, there is some evidence showing that fake products, such as shoes and handbags, support child labour and can be used to fund terrorism.

In January 2016, over 30,000 pairs of shoes were seized in a raid conducted by the SARS, while doing a routine customs inspection at the Lebombo border post in Mpumalanga, near Swaziland and Mozambique. South Africa is seen as a net importer of fake footwear. These tips are useful in order to spot fakes:

Be wary of auction sites. There is no guarantee the item being offered is genuine.

Be suspicious of ‘look-a-like’ sites. These clues will tell you that the site may not be legitimate.