Bipartisan Customs Bill Would Combat Counterfeit Semiconductors

Friday, Dec 11, 2015, 7:30pm

by Semiconductor Industry Association

The House of Representatives today approved the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015 (H.R. 644/S.1269), legislation that would improve the processes in place for the movement of goods in and out of the United States. Earlier this week, SIA urged House and Senate leaders to approve this legislation and send it to the President to be signed into law. The Senate is expected to consider the legislation next week.

As a direct result of the longstanding advocacy efforts of SIA and our members, the bipartisan Customs legislation includes a key provision that would combat counterfeit semiconductors, which pose significant risks to public safety and national security. The provision would require U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to share information and samples of suspect counterfeit parts, including counterfeit semiconductors, with rights holders.


CBP has previously redacted images of suspect counterfeit semiconductors and delayed sharing information with companies that play a vital role in determining if parts are counterfeit and require seizure. Enactment of this legislation would allow CBP to use the expertise of rights holders in determining if parts are counterfeit, thereby helping prevent counterfeit products from entering the United States.

Semiconductors are embedded into countless products and systems that perform critical functions in our society, and the failure of a single component in one of these products or systems can have catastrophic consequences. SIA has long advocated for a multi-pronged approach to combatting counterfeit semiconductors, including the elimination of CBP’s redaction policy and 7-day waiting rule.

The threat of counterfeit semiconductors can also be greatly reduced by buying semiconductor products either directly from Original Component Manufacturers (OCMs) or their authorized distributors or resellers. This was the chief recommendation of SIA’s anti-counterfeiting white paper.

We applaud House members for approving the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015 and urge the Senate to do the same. Doing so will help ensure the safety and security of technologies that are vital to America’s economic and national security.