US ICE-Homeland Security Investigations pilots WCO IPM Mobile application in the USA

21 April 2015

The WCO is pleased to announce that the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the National IPR Center successfully conducted in March 2015 a pilot of the WCO IPM Mobile Application, the mobile version of IPM, a communication and training tool designed for law enforcement officers with the aim to facilitate the distinction between genuine and counterfeit goods.

Over a three-week period, ICE-HSI and the IPR Center, in conjunction with the WCO, completed the pilot testing in five different field offices throughout the United States - Los Angeles, CA; Newark, NJ; Miami, FL; Dallas TX and Houston, TX -, committing to being one of the lead law enforcement agencies to utilize WCO’s IPM tool against counterfeiting.

The success of this pilot was confirmed by the significant activity on the platform during the whole testing period, with 63 special agents having used the tool daily, both inside and outside ports of entry and more than 1000 different searches registered in total.

"The IPR Center is currently collecting feedback from special agents who participated in this pilot. My team is encouraged that this constructive feedback will support the WCO in the effort to further improve the IPM application and further facilitate timely contact with rights holders as the fight against the global impact of counterfeiting continues", says Mr. Joseph Macias, Acting Assistant Director of the National IPR Center.

"We hope that this exercise will allow us to better understand Customs officers’ needs and to take their ideas and recommendations into consideration before releasing our final tool. This pilot and the feedback we are consolidating will therefore lay the groundwork for our future endeavors regarding the IPM project", commented Mr. Leigh Winchell, Deputy Director of the Compliance and Facilitation Directorate at the WCO.

Earlier this year, the WCO announced a complete redesign of both the web and mobile IPM platforms, delivering new levels of intuitiveness, and including a much stronger integration of Security Solution Providers allowing for law enforcement agents to receive actionable data on the spot. The new platform will also include a powerful set of analytical tools generating an unprecedented wealth of information and data. The WCO expects global deployment of both the mobile and web applications before the end of this quarter. 

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