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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Beware of Fake Core i7s!

Intel has confirmed that counterfeits of its Core i7 processors were sold through the North American online retail outlet Newegg.

"Intel has been made aware of the potential for counterfeit i7-920 packages in the marketplace and is working to how many and/or where they are being sold. The examples we have seen are not Intel products but are counterfeits. Buyers should contact their place of purchase for a replacement and/or should contact their local law enforcement agency if the place of purchase refuses to help."

The hooky Intel goods were first reported by Hard OCP on Friday. One of its forum members posted images of the supposedly new Intel Core i7-920 chip that had been delivered to him after he purchased it through Newegg.

The attention to detail was fairly impressive, if one didn't notice that the "processor" was just an aluminium blank. Another forum member at Overclockers reported the same problem, posting his images of "factory sealed" printed on the box itself underneath a fake factory sealed sticker. Ingenious. But the house of cards crumbled immediately as both forum members reported spelling mistakes on the packaging and blank instruction manuals.

Online retailer NewEgg said late Monday that it has confirmed that a shipment of Core i7s were indeed fake, and that it had broken off its supply relationship with IPEX, the supplier. NewEgg also apologized.
The fake Core i7s surfaced this weekend, and Intel confirmed them on Monday morning. At the time, reports had indicated that the fake processors were in fact so-called "demo units".

By Monday afternoon, NewEgg had rejected that story.

"Newegg is currently conducting a thorough investigation surrounding recent shipments of questionable Intel Core i7-920 CPUs purchased from Newegg.com," a spokesman said in a statement.

"Initial information we received from our supplier, IPEX, stated that they had mistakenly shipped us 'demo units,' the spokesman added. "We have since come to discover the CPUs were counterfeit and are terminating our relationship with this supplier. Contrary to any speculation, D&H Distributing is not the vendor that supplied us with the Intel Core i7-920 CPUs in question."

Intel confirmed again that they had seen the fake Core i7s. "Intel is getting samples to inspect and until then we can say that everything in the package appears fake," a spokesman said in an email late on Monday. "Some of the photos of the processor look like it is a casting and not even a real processor of any kind. Newegg has moved quickly to replace the suspect units."

Again, buyers should contact their point of purchase for a replacement, the Intel spokesman said. (PC Magazine)

According to HotHardware, NewEgg says the fake processors are actually demo units but looking at the pictures below (via Dreadlock), it's a hard excuse to swallow. What's more D&H has sent out cease and desist orders to two websites running stories on the fraudulent chips.

You can read more about it in the link below:


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