IP Australia and National Rugby League Use Blockchain Against Fake Products

The intellectual property rights issuer of Australia will use blockchain to help NRL fight the sale of counterfeit merchandise.

Australia’s top-tier rugby league, the National Rugby League, along with IP Australia will trial a blockchain-based application to curb the sale of counterfeit products.

IP Australia is an agency of the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science that orchestrates and regulates the issuance of intellectual property rights and legislation relating to patents, trademarks, registered designs and plant breeder’s rights in Australia.

Genuine products will be tagged with trust badges

According to a ZDNet report, the new application uses blockchain to enable trademark owners to link their products to the government register. It acts as proof of their products’ authenticity, their origin and helps them control the use of their mark. 

As part of the trial, NRL will link two of its online merchandise stores NRL Shop and Savvy Supporter with the platform. Doing so will attach a “trust badge” to each of these websites which will be visual proof for their customers that the websites have been verified by IP Australia. Customers will also be able to view information regarding the registered trademark by clicking on the trust badge.

Karen Andrews, Minister for Industry, Science and Technology, said that they can use the application to prevent the counterfeiting of Australia-made products. It “is a great example of how new technologies can be applied in very practical ways to grow the economy and create local jobs,” she added.

The “trust badge” initiative of IP Australia is part of the agency’s Smart Trade Mark platform which they are trialling across various industries to improve tracking and tracing of authentic products and minimize the sale of counterfeit products. 

IP Australia is also working with Indigenous Land and Sea Corporation and the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation to test the use of their blockchain application.

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