European Anti-Fraud Office

Operation FAKE

Operation FAKE

Operation FAKE, the surveillance of maritime and air traffic from 17 to 27 May 2005, was the result of close cooperation between the Customs authorities of the 25 Member States, the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) and the Taxation and Customs Union Directorate-General (DG TAXUD). The goal of the operation was to analyse the routes used by counterfeiters to gain access to Europe.

The Member States and World Customs Organisation approved both the risk indicators which would be used to ‘sound the alarm’ for the control services, as well as the operational plan, which enabled the operation to be launched on 17 May and to finish on 27 May 2005

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For this operation, a permanent operational technical centre, where the liaison officers sent by the Member States could carry out their work, was set up for the first time on OLAF premises.

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The system created by OLAF meant that the documents relating to the goods were sent by the ports to OLAF itself, so that they could be analysed and shared in real time between the units of all the Member States via an electronic forum. This strategy enabled officers to select the suspect containers and then to send the information to the ports where the goods were to arrive, which then became responsible for checking the containers concerned.