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Know Your Source: Why Buy from Cisco Partners?

The big game is about to start. Everyone’s eyes are firmly fixed on their televisions. The kickoff, then wild cheers. But suddenly, the image starts to fade, get fuzzy, and then there’s only static…

What a customer thinks was a good deal was, in fact, a very expensive mistake. Of course, as our partners, you understand that customers shouldn’t trust mission-critical applications to equipment that isn’t purchased from Authorized Cisco Partners.

Sure, it’s easy for customers to find a good deal online, but authentic equipment comes with a guarantee and has been put through Cisco’s strict testing and quality control…

When products aren’t purchased through Cisco’s Authorized Channel, Cisco cannot guarantee the source, quality, or authenticity of those products.

One risk in buying outside Cisco’s Authorized Channel is purchasing counterfeit product. The purchase of counterfeit products leaves customers extremely vulnerable, and as you know, also impacts partner profitability — and we take these issues very seriously.  Videos like this are a reminder to customers that they should always buy from Authorized Cisco Partners.

If you or your customers suspect counterfeit products, please notify the Cisco Brand Protection team by phoning toll-free +1 (877) 571-1700 or by sending an email to Brand Protection. For more information, please visit the Brand Protection site.

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  1. Hi Alexandra, Both the FBI and Cisco itself appear to contradict your blog story. Sincerely, Brad Reese
    • Hi Brad, Thanks for your comment. Would like to ensure the blog is accurate. Can you elaborate on your comment? Thank you!
      • Hi Alexandra, I believe that Cisco has many fine, outstanding and reputable authorized Cisco partners. Furthermore, I also believe that there are many fine, outstanding and reputable non-authorized Cisco resellers. However, Cisco states in your above blog: "Customers shouldn't trust mission-critical applications to equipment that isn't purchased from Authorized Cisco Partners." But according to an FBI Press Release: "On January 11, 2008, the FBI's Cyber Division provided an unclassified PowerPoint presentation and briefing on efforts to counter the production and distribution of counterfeit network hardware." The content of the FBI PowerPoint Presentation as specifically referenced in the above FBI press release: -Problems with Cisco -Government's Problem -Gold/Silver Partners -purchased counterfeit -sold counterfeit to government and defense contractors -Cisco's Brand Protection does NOT coordinate with Cisco's Government Sales The FBI PowerPoint presentation above appears to contradict Cisco's advice NOT to purchase from non-authorized Cisco partners. How so? Because the FBI clearly states that authorized Cisco partners, Cisco's Gold and Silver partners, sold counterfeit Cisco to the government and defense contractors. Finally, in your blog story above Cisco states: "When products aren't purchased through Cisco's Authorized Channel, Cisco cannot guarantee the source, quality, or authenticity of those products." Revealing, Cisco itself contradicts its above statement in the following Cisco press release: "If fiscal fraud occurred in the companies that distribute or resell Cisco products, Cisco is not necessarily responsible for these misdeeds. No corporation engaging in an indirect sales model can directly vouch for or control every action of its distributors." Cisco is facing one of the largest fines in Brazilian history R$3.3 billion BRL, yet Cisco itself is blaming its authorized Cisco partners for the fraud: So here we have Cisco itself stating that it can't guarantee the "honesty" of its authorized Cisco partners. And if that's the case, how can Cisco simultaneously guarantee the source, quality, or authenticity of products sold by authorized Cisco partners? Hopefully Alexandra, this will clarify my comment. Sincerely, Brad Reese
        • I 100% agree with your statement and i guess Cisco needs to revisit their approach towards partner community - who actually made Cisco. We have a similar story here in this part of the world from Cisco. My response is bit late and i was not been able to hold on my comments after reading the findings from your side.
  2. Or for the price of a SMARTnet contract (or less), the customer can have a genuine cold spare on hand if equipment does fail. I have had more equipment fail out of the box FROM CISCO upon deployment than I have with used, burned-in equipment. This is just another way of Cisco to scare people from buying real equipment from real vendors who really test the equipment prior to shipping. The people who sell this equipment have the real-world experience to support it and help out customers without going through "Tier One" support and wasting the customer's time. By the way, there was a case that the government did buy from an authorized vendor and received fake equipment. So even buying through authorized channels isn't safe.
  3. A good way to guarantee that you purchase quality equipment is to work with companies who are associated with organizations such as UNEDA. The United Network Equipment Dealer Association (UNEDA) is a worldwide alliance of almost 300 companies whose primary business is supplying pre-owned networking equipment. Members represent the entire spectrum of the secondary market, from companies with hundreds of employees and millions of dollars in inventory to small, entrepreneurial organizations. Together their combined yearly buying clout exceeds $2.5 billion, representing the sale of millions of pieces of equipment to tens of thousands of customers worldwide. UNEDA members must adhere to a strict code of ethics that includes a firm policy against selling any equipment that is not legitimate and are immediately removed from membership if they break this rule. UNEDA works hand in hand with multiple government agencies to help eradicate counterfeit and stolen equipment from being sold to end-user customers. John Stafford UNEDA