While contractors are supposed to use genuine Cisco parts, the low price of counterfeits – in some cases one-fifth the price of a genuine Cisco part – is just too irresistible to many companies. The FBI says the government procurement process which uses layers of contractors and subcontractors adds to the problem.
The bureau says it has raided several companies around the nation which sold and installed counterfeit Cisco gear. In many cases, the equipment can cause network failures because of shoddy wiring and workmanship, according to the FBI. The power point presentation outlines several cases where the counterfeit networking gear caused duplicate MAC addresses and one case where a router caught fire because of a faulty power supply.