The Washington Post reports that while "Amazon executives have publicly lamented the scourge of counterfeits, saying they have spent hundreds of millions of dollars and hired thousands of workers to police its massive market of third-party firms that use the e-commerce site to sell their goods," the fact is that "Amazon’s system is failing to stanch the flow of dubious goods even with obvious examples of knockoffs.

"The continued abundance of counterfeit goods on the site is the result of Amazon’s decisions to prioritize a broad selection of products and cheaper prices over the deployment of aggressive technologies and policies that could further stem the problem, according to former executives and outside consultants."

You can read the entire, fascinating story here.

KC's View: Here's thing.

The story quotes Amazon’s vice president of public policy, Brian Huseman, as saying that "the company spent $400 million in personnel costs last year to fight fraud and abuse, employing more than 5,000 workers."

And the Post quotes an Amazon spokesperson, Cecilia Fan, as saying that "Amazon goes 'well beyond our legal obligations' to snuff out fakes on the site."

I call B.S.

Not about the financial and personnel investments. I'm sure that's all true. But the "beyond our legal obligations" comment strikes me as sort of disingenuous and disconnected … and even more so because it constantly talks about its adherence to the principles of "customer obsession rather than competitor focus, passion for invention, commitment to operational excellence, and long-term thinking."

On two counts - customer obsession and long-term thinking - Amazon may be dropping the ball in this case. If you are obsessed with me as a customer, then you have to make sure I am getting real products, not counterfeits. Not doing so - and this is, after all, a company that handles cloud computing for the CIA, so it knows a little something about security - erodes customer trust, which hurts the company long-term.