Local authorities in East Africa have successfully seized over 7,000 illicit items in partnership with HP across Kenya’s Nairobi area and Tanzania’s Dar Es Salaam and Mwanza areas. The items include counterfeit HP printer ink and toner cartridges.

Between July and September 2021, local authorities raided several commercial facilities following intelligence gathered by local HP partners. The raid shut down ten major sources of counterfeit cartridges for HP printers. While counterfeit cartridges may look like genuine HP cartridges at a glance, they do not provide the high print quality, reliability, and yields that HP customers expect from original HP supplies.

Alarmingly, using counterfeit cartridges can entail serious risks. These risks can include cartridges which fail to work or do not work at all, and even cause expensive or irreparable damage to printers due to ink or toner leakages.

Original HP supplies are made as part of HP’s closed loop recycling program which ensures they do not end up in landfill at the end of their life. This has resulted in than 875 million original HP ink and toner cartridges being recycled by customers with HP Planet Partners. An additional more than 4.7 billion recycled plastic bottles have also been used by HP to manufacture new original HP ink cartridges.

In addition, HP offers its customers and partners Customer Delivery Inspections. This is a unique protection service which helps them identify and avoid potential counterfeits. The inspections are carried out at the customers’ premises and are free of charge for customers. If counterfeits are suspected, the inspector will ask for the name of the supplier and a copy of the proof of purchase to identify where the counterfeit products came from.

“For resellers and distributors, the sale of counterfeit printer and toner cartridges is an infringement of intellectual property, which can have serious reputational repercussions for consumers, illicit products can deliver a poor experience and damage hardware. Authentic ink and toner cartridges have been developed to deliver consistent quality results that users can trust,” said Bradley Pulford, VP and Managing Director, HP Africa.