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Detecting counterfeit ICs in a sellers market

Dec 21, 2021

“Fake” chips present a huge issue for manufacturing companies trying to source ICs from non-traditional channels, writes Electronic Design.

Counterfeiting semiconductors has been a rapidly increasing trend, impacting a wide variety of electronics systems used by a wide gamut of involved parties—consumers, businesses, and military customers. The detection of counterfeit components has become an increasingly important priority for electronics manufacturers and component suppliers worldwide.

“ICs aren’t hard to fake, unlike banknotes. Making “lookalike” parts that resemble real ones takes very little skill. It simply requires finding cheap parts in the same format of package and merely painting new marks on them,” writes Electronic Design. “The most prevalent counterfeiting technique is selling re-badged products. It’s a simple matter to remove the existing mark from a chip package and put on a new logo and part number, or a different brand or a different speed—and then sell the semiconductor to an unsuspecting buyer who has no way of making sure that the product is ‘real’. Sometimes the chip is merely an empty package with no die inside”

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Astute Electronics is a highly accredited, quality-driven procurement expert, with a list of clients that includes the world’s leading defence suppliers. Our mission is to shield you against inferior quality products and services. As such, our operations are run in accordance with quality processes including AS6081 that mitigates the risks of purchasing and supplying fraudulent/counterfeit electronic parts.

The bespoke Astute Counterfeit Avoidance Programme (ACAP) is market-leading in its process and offers a secure, warranted route for these occasions. For parts obtained through non-traceable routes, Astute will subject products to rigorous destructive and non-destructive testing through their ACAP scheme, encompassing the AS6081 anti-counterfeit standards. For more help with anti-counterfeit measures, contact Astute Electronics