SnapDragon Monitoring to defend Harris Tweed name and Orb registered marks online
An Edinburgh-based data monitoring firm has been appointed by the Harris Tweed Authority to help protect the Harris Tweed brand, including its iconic Orb mark, online.
SnapDragon Monitoring, which helps SMEs protect their intellectual property (IP) and tackles online sales of counterfeit goods, will monitor ecommerce, social media and auction sites for misuse of the Orb certification mark, which is the oldest certification mark of its kind still in continuous use in Britain, and take action against online sales of counterfeit Harris Tweed products.
The team was brought in following a recommendation by law firm Burness Paull, which manages the Harris Tweed Authority’s global legal affairs, to protect the Orb which can only be used on, or in relation to genuine Harris Tweed cloth or products.
The Harris Tweed Authority, which is the legal guardian of Harris Tweed and the Orb mark, has already taken action against the misuse of the Orb, including forgery of the recognisable Harris Tweed labels, which were sold for use on products that had no connection to genuine Harris Tweed, in recent years.
Lorna MacAulay, Chief Executive of the Harris Tweed Authority, said: “It has taken generations to build the Harris Tweed brand into the popular global phenomena we see today. It is our job to guard against unauthorised use of the brand and we take that role very seriously.
“SnapDragon Monitoring will help us to continue to do that effectively in the digital world and protect our reputation in the eyes of businesses who invest in Harris Tweed and the customers who buy their products.”
SnapDragon Monitoring was founded by Rachel Jones – prompted by her first-hand experience of fighting and beating counterfeiting while running a business selling baby products.
The CEO said: “Brands work hard to build trust but counterfeiting can easily destroy it. The Harris Tweed Orb is one of the most recognisable trademarks in fashion, which makes it a target for fakes. Our team of experts will work to eliminate the sale of Harris Tweed counterfeits online and protect its reputation for the future.”
SnapDragon Monitoring works closely with world-leading ecommerce platforms including Amazon, eBay, and Alibaba to remove counterfeit products from sale. It counts Edinburgh-based Morphsuits, Cheeky Chompers and Glencairn Crystal among its clients.
It says the rise in counterfeiting and other online IP infringement is one of the biggest challenges facing businesses today. In 2016 alone, SnapDragon Monitoring says it prevented the sale of $10 billion worth of counterfeit products.
The Harris Tweed Orb guarantees the highest quality tweed, dyed, spun and hand-woven by islanders of the Outer Hebrides in their homes to laws outlined in the Harris Tweed Act of Parliament.