Instagram is failing to clamp down on the abuse of its platform by groups of organized criminals promoting counterfeit luxury products including shoes, handbags, clothes and sunglasses, according to research by analytics firm Ghost Data.
The research, seen exclusively by NBC News, shows that the number of accounts involved in counterfeiting activities linked to brands including Gucci, Chanel, Balenciaga, Louis Vuitton and Dior has almost tripled over the last three years.
The research comes as Instagram has sought to ramp up its e-commerce efforts, shifting from being a social media platform to a place where brands can sell to customers directly.
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An Instagram spokeswoman said the platform takes “IP rights, including issues around counterfeiting, very seriously.”