Saturday, March 17, 2012

The evil counterfeit Canada Goose coat

I’ve been working in northern regions of Canada for over 22 years, and currently work in the high arctic.  For all this time, I have never had a really good parka. 

My first, and really only parka was from the Sears Men’s department, it was the only thing warm enough in my price range when I was starting out in my early 20’s.  I still have it, and have worn it as recently as 2 years ago.  However, it doesn’t fit well and is really heavy.  I have a down jacket from MEC which I usually wear.  It’s halfway between jacket and parka, and it’s warm enough, but doesn’t really have good face protection.

I’ve always coveted a Canada Goose parka, but could never really justify the expense when I already had an ugly but serviceable parka.  I’d heard rumours that sometimes, rarely, they had sales, but I’d never managed to catch one.

Until this year.  This year, I saw an ad on Facebook (I know, I know).  Canada Goose parkas, 40% off!!!  What luck!  I was getting ready for my current trip north, and I was really dissatisfied with my old ugly grey men’s parka.  Finally, a chance to get something that, while not exactly fashionable, would be warm and attractive, and fit properly.

I clicked the ad and went to the Canada Goose site.  No, really, it is the Canada Goose site.  The only thing is, it’s been copied and lifted from the Canada Goose internet address and placed at a similar-sounding one.  I didn’t suspect I was on a counterfeiter’s site.

The price was not outlandishly cheap, the coat was still $350, a bargain for a Canada Goose coat, but well within the realm of what a decent down coat would go for, especially on sale.  I wrote to the customer service department for help in choosing a style for extreme cold conditions.  They promptly replied and said all the sale coat styles were suitable, I could just select the one I liked best.  I did so and paid with my credit card.

The coat arrived promptly via Canada Post.  I took it out of the mailing bag… it was a little loose in the stuff sack.


I took it out… I’m not new to down clothing, so I found it to be not as puffy as I would expect.  I consulted with a friend though, who said “GOOD”, as overly puffy is, well, overly puffy.  I thought maybe they’d invented a new slim-line Goose, like how computers and TV’s and everything get skinnier and skinnier every year.


The coat came with a “free gift”, I found this a bit unusual, but hey, maybe they have a good sense of humour…


I tried it on and felt hot almost instantly, so it was warm, at least in an Ottawa apartment.  I had my coat!  There was no invoice inside, so as I was throwing away the packaging I took out the waybill from the exterior of the package expecting to find it there.

It was written in Chinese.  Uh oh.  I don’t think it should be written in Chinese.

I went to the website handily written on the stuff-sack, which actually is the REAL Canada Goose website.  There, I examined the handy page they have there that lists over 200 counterfeit websites.  I compared that with the e-mail I had from when I corresponded with what I thought was their customer service rep… uh oh.  A match.  The e-mail’s domain name matched one of the counterfeit ones.

I’d been duped!  I’m usually pretty good at not getting screwed like this, but these criminals are REALLY good at what they do.  The construction of the coat is mostly really good, high attention to detail.

Except this hood... this hood is a little on the scruffy side, I had thought when I first tried it on.  Not the quality fur you usually get on a Canada Goose.


But the tags!  The tags and labels are so authentic looking:


Your assurance of quality, the "downmark"...



The arm badge...


The reassuring little story about their 50 years of experience and the quality of their materials...


Oh, and no counterfeit coat would be complete without a certificate of authenticity!


Fake!  Fake!  Fake!  Fake!  FAKE!

I contacted Canada Goose who confirmed the coat was a fake, and then contacted Canada’s Anti-Fraud unit who confirmed they were already on the case of this particular counterfeiter.  They said the coat was filled with chicken feathers, which were probably not clean, and that it would be a health hazard for anyone to wear it.

I then contacted Visa, expecting it would be no problem to have this dealt with.  To my surprise, they insisted that since I had given my card number voluntarily to the criminals, that I was responsible.  They kept insisting, “this is not fraud”.  Uh, yes Visa, it is.  It might not fit the narrow description of what you wish fraud was, but it most definitely is fraud.

The most surprising thing of all is how good the evil counterfeiters were about responding to me.  They didn’t actually fix the situation of course, but they were attentive and replied to every e-mail.  Very gradually they admitted they weren’t Canada Goose, but “just as good”.  They just had a “superabundant” amount of product from the “Chinese outlet”.  They eventually offered me a 1/3 discount, but after many many e-mails agreed to take a return of the coat for a refund.

Trouble was, it would cost $256 to send the thing back to China with a tracking number, and I wasn’t paying that.  In fact, I wasn’t willing to pay anything to return the damn thing, these people are criminals, they lied about who they were, I would never have bought a fake coat from China, they were presenting themselves as Canada Goose, using that company’s own stolen webpages.

I eventually won my dispute with Visa, although it won’t be final for another 4 months or something.  I’ll take it to court though if they decide to reverse it and support the criminal merchant over me, I have proof that this is a counterfeit, even the Chinese company (that I eventually found out is really called Taitan Trading) admits to it.  I’ll never pay that bill, that’s for sure.  Visa knows this company is selling counterfeit products by misrepresenting itself as the authentic company, that can’t be legal.

So, after all that I’ve decided my MEC down coat will just have to cut it.  No more internet coat shopping for me.  I’ll have to hang onto the coat for a few months to make sure Visa doesn’t reverse the reversal, or that the evil Chinese counterfeiters don’t ask for it back (I’ll happily send it to them if they send me a prepaid label.)

And I know now not to trust Facebook ads!  I was actually under the very mistaken impression that they vetted their ads, they apparently do not.  There’s no way to even report an ad… Facebook has a dead-end form, it didn’t work, and it was buried under many layers and was almost impossible to find anyway.

So, that was my traumatic attempt to update my northern wardrobe.   I may look a little frumpy as I waddle over the tundra, and my eyelashes might be frozen closed, but the rest of me is staying warm.

35 comments:

  1. I wonder what kind of fur was used for the hood...Fido?

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  2. Its getting warmer in Grise Fiord, so you should be fine with your nice not real Canada Goose. Next time no more facebook. Wish you a nice stay in Grise.

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  3. the filling could be feeces from mulched chicken feathers, full of bacteria and even mold; dont risk getting sick from made in china crap!

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  4. Although I didnt order mine on Facebook. Same thing has happened to me to. I ordered a jacket thinking I was getting it from Canada Goose not a counterfeit. I want the real thing!
    Only after did I find out there is counterfeit Canada Goose jackets out there.
    Usually Im careful but the real Canada Goose website is lost among the mamy many fake websites out there. Please Candada Goose put this on your front page website

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  5. Same with me, Andrea, I hadn't heard about the wave of fakes until after I bought mine. If you bought it with a credit card, the credit card company will refund your money although you might have to fight them for it, so if they say no, just keep escalating it. They know these guys are fraudsters, they just like to pretend they don't so they can keep the credit business.

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  6. The exact same thing happened to me!
    I got mine from CAGOOSE.US and I ordered an XL it deffs is not an XL and I had all the same badges and stuff yours had.
    I just filed a complaint through e-mail to the fraud thing on the RCMP website and now I have to wait till tomorrow to call Canada Goose and figure out what to do.
    Did Canada Goose offer to get you the real thing or anything? Did you end up paying the bill?

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  7. I didn't end up paying it, I won the Visa dispute, but they sure fought me on it!

    Canada Goose seemed kind of detached in their correspondance with me; didn't seem that sympathetic, just very matter-of-fact in confirming that yes, my coat was a fake. No sympathy or advice on where to get a real Goose, so I didn't pursue getting a real one, as I didn't feel like they really cared that people were getting ripped off.

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  8. I just received my very own fake Canada Goose parka today, very unhappy, they sent the wrong color, its way to small, for an XL, and when I was unzipping it, the zipper pull broke right off, and I only had it out of the package for about 5 mins, I did purchase with paypal though! Can anyone tell me if they will refund my money! What an idoit I feel like! NEVER AGAIN!!!!!!!

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  9. Michelle, did you know you were buying a fake when you bought it? If it was sold as an authentic Canada Goose, then you might have recourse through paypal to get refunded. If you knew it was a fake though, you might just have to contact the merchant about getting the correct size, or returning it as you're not happy with it. (Even though it's not legal for them to sell you a fake even if you know it's fake, it's harder to get your money back from the payment if you were going along with it willingly.)

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  10. canadagoosejacketssaleeshop.com

    Did you all order it on this website?
    I'm probably the next victum :(
    Also payed with paypal; that's the reason i thought it would be save....

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  11. There are multiple criminal outfits selling these coats, and they change their website URL's frequently. Sorry to hear you were scammed too, Persoon.

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  12. I have just purchased a canada goose jacket through what I thought was ASOS, but when I paid through PayPay, I noticed a Chinese name, going back into the ASOS web site In then realized it wasn't .com. I did contact pay pay straight away to inform them that I had been scammed. They told me I had to wait & days before putting a complaint in. Where do I stand. The wbsite is identical to ASOS.

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  13. We were all screwed, even me in the Netherlands, it seems so real. Sender "China" how can we avoid these things?

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  14. Youve all been China Goosed!!

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  15. Yes, I as well fell into throwing hard earned money into this fraud - feel sick over it - trying to get resolve
    I have always been so careful online shopping - Rats

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  16. I just got China Goosed as well. What argument did you use with Visa? I need to do the same...

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    1. hi i was china goosed too.. did you get your money back? need your help. i am depressed now :( my first time to buy expensive jacket and it all goes to waste :(

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  17. I was duped as well!!! I too paid with Visa and am in the midst of trying to get my money back. Did Visa cough up the money to you??

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  18. I was duped as well!!! I paid with visa and am trying to get my money back. Were you successful??

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  19. i am too. is there any chance we can have our money back?

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  20. China China China!!
    Becoming the world super power one fake Canada Goose at a time!!

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  21. I'm a journalist with CBC News. I'm working on a TV story about this Canada Goose scam. I'm looking for someone who has gone through it in the Ottawa area. If you see this post and fit the bill please email me at ashley.burke@cbc.ca

    Thanks,
    Ashley Burke
    Twitter: @CBCAshleyBurke

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  22. Hey - thanks for posting that. I was just about to buy a coat as I saw an ad on Facebook. Luckily for me I found your page with your warning. You saved me 200 euro. Cheers.

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  23. websites - www.goosejacket-canada.com are scam. It looks like canadian web sites, prices are stated in CAD but after you transfer the money, the web site is changed. I contacted my bank imediately after the transfer - the payment was sent in yuan somewhere to china. Be careful.

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  24. Good post, helps a lot of people. CG NEVER goes on sale, btw.

    But I don't really get it: if you really want/need a CG, and if you're willing to pay $350, why aren't you willing to pay $650...? $350 is already A LOT of money, so why not save a little more (I mean if you can spend $350 on a coat, you're able to save money, that's for sure), and buy from trusted retailers? Criminals are fairly good at what they do, yes, but with a little common sense and some googling, you'll know. It's not rocket science, really. And who doesn't do extensive research before paying that amount of money, or pays up when there's even a sliver of doubt...a little peculiar if you ask me.

    So: if you really want one, don't try to save a couple of bucks and just buy the real (expensive) deal. You'll probably only have to buy a CG once; the quality is totally awesome and if you take care of it, it lasts for years and years and years. Worth the money if you ask me!

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    1. Anon Jan 20, another thing you don't get is that we DID think we were buying from trusted retailers. In my case, I bought from the Canada Goose site itself, which had been stolen and placed at a similar-sounding website address, but other than that, it WAS their site, I had been there before (at the non-stolen version) and I was familiar with it so I didn't know I was on a scammer's version of it on that visit.

      I don't think it's common knowledge that CG never goes on sale (if that is even true), so victim-blaming is not appropriate on that point, either.

      Those who blame us for what happened to us just don't get that the Chinese scammers don't announce that that they are scammers, they are really good at faking that they are the real Canada Goose company. We DID want to buy the real thing, and were trying to do so.

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  25. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  26. Hey all, i am another victim to the Canada Goose. i purchase mine through the link cheap canadian goose.org which then translate Canada goosens.org. the jacket arrived from Large Bees Int'L PTE LTD. singapore. They also state a value of USD. 38.00 country of manufacture is China, People republic.
    please do not pucharse from them.

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    1. Do you still have it at least is it warm?
      They got me to am just crying right now lol

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  27. Omg i can not beleive this i just got fucked....i did the same thing as u ..but 2 days ago...at least i will have a coat...cant beleive this @&#^$%÷ never never never again
    at least is the coat warm?

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    1. I gave my coat away, but it seemed warm enough for southern Canada. It wouldn't have been warm enough for the high arctic, which is what I had bought it for, as it wouldn't have been down-filled, being a fake.

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  28. Think I might've been scammed as well. Just ordered and then got skeptical www.goosetoronto.ca. Smells of a scam. Wish I'd done a little more research ahead of time.

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  29. I'm wondering how to get the money back??

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    1. If you paid with a credit card, you should be able to get the charge reversed, if they were selling to you as a genuine Canada Goose coat, and/or representing themselves to be Canada Goose. You may have to be very persistent with the credit card company, though. Good luck!

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  30. Omg I have been scammed as well, I just hope that it is wearable and not stuffed with chicken feathers. I paid $323.00 Canadian for it. I could not believe that it was coming from China when I traced it. Why is nothing done to stop this kind of Fraud and how does it get through Canada Customs. I am so upset, with $100.00 dollars more I could have bought myself a really nice NORTHFACE parka at Sportcheck.

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