Hublot Turns to WISekey Smart Card Technology to Fight Counterfeiting of Luxury Watches

WISekey, a provider of smart card technology, announced it will provide Swiss luxury watchmaker Hublot, a certification system that will help reduce counterfeiting among the luxury watch industry.

As a WISekey customer, all Hublot watches will be protected by WISeAuthentic, a certification system of authenticity through a smart card. By leveraging this technology, online shopping and auction Websites have the ability to provide its users a safe, secure transaction, by controlling counterfeited goods in its product range.

"Counterfeiting represents approximately five to seven percent of all world trade,” said Carlos Moreira, CEO of WISekey. “Therefore, with the luxury brand industries estimated to reach one US trillion dollars by 2010, these companies need a solution that will prove authenticity. We are pleased that Hublot saw the value in WISeAuthentic and look forward to helping them, and others, in the fight against counterfeiting.”

As a trusted and secure platform, WISeAuthentic will be used by the purchaser to access an encrypted area of Hublot's Website where the watch can be definitively identified as part of Hublot's inventory. Each smart card that is given at the time of purchase, in addition to its certificate of origin, is unique to each watch and contains full details of the product including registration number, bar code, place where it was manufactured, among other details. If the encrypted information on the watch, does not match that of the WISeAuthentic smart card, access will be denied.

"In the watch industry we are seeing a significant increase in counterfeit goods,” said Jean-Claude Biver, CEO of Hublot. “It was imperative for us as a company to find a way to not only protect our watches but also those who were purchasing them. WISekey has a strong track record in security and authentication and when looking for a partner to help us in the fight against counterfeiting we knew WISekey was the right choice for us.”

Currently, Hublot is the first watch making company to reach this level of protection for its products by associating digital anti-counterfeiting technology with traditional watch making. This combination provides a fail-safe solution, impossible to replicate at a cost that is a small fraction of the amount lost in sales due to counterfeits.

"Every year, more than 40 million Swiss counterfeit watches enter the market compared to 26 million genuine watches,” said Jean-Daniel Pasche, President, Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry. “This is a significant number that costs the Swiss watch industry, on a global basis, approximately 700 million to 800 million US dollars. We are pleased to see companies are taking this issue seriously and creating solutions that will get us closer to stop counterfeiting.”

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