Buyers of online counterfeit goods may find their favorite websites are under federal lock-down, NPR reports. Authorities have impounded the domain names of 150 websites suspected of selling pirated or counterfeit items, they said today. That includes sellers of DVD sets, golf equipment, and professional sports jerseys. "For most, the holidays represent a season of good will and giving, but for these criminals, it's the season to lure in unsuspecting holiday shoppers," says one official.
More Americans are doing holiday shopping online, he adds, "and they may not realize that purchasing counterfeit goods results in American jobs lost, American business profits stolen and American consumers receiving substandard products." Even worse, the profits from these sites "often fuel other kinds of organized crime." The website owners have 60 days to challenge the takeovers, but another officials says almost all such seizures become permanent. (Read more counterfeit stories.)