Officials warn NFL fans of counterfeit merchandise - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Officials warn NFL fans of counterfeit merchandise

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MINNEAPOLIS (KTIV) -

On the eve of the Big Game, authorities are warning the public about the dangers of counterfeit merchandise.

With fans coming in from all over the country and world to be a part of the Super Bowl experience, it raises concerns over fake goods.

Homeland Security Investigations and U.S. Customs and Border Protection recently seized over $15 million of counterfeit gear.

The agencies showed off merchandise that looked real, but was indeed fake.

Real, licensed NFL merchandise will have the NFL's official holographic marks of authenticity.

Authorities say buying counterfeit gear through third-party means could jeopardize the consumer's financial information and more.

"The illegal manufacture of counterfeit goods represent predatory trade practices that endanger the public health and our economy, and restrict the competitiveness of U.S. products in the global market," said HSI special agent Alex Khu.

These guidelines also apply to Super Bowl tickets. 

The NFL has implemented special security measures on authentic tickets. This includes special graphics and ink, as well as Super Bowl-specific security labels.

If you don't have these features on your ticket, it's not real.

"That's why we strongly discourage fans from buying tickets from any suspicious sources," said NFL Senior Counsel of Legal Affairs Michael Buchwald. "Even if a ticket looks real, it could have been reported lost or stolen. Which means the person holding it may not be granted entry into the stadium.

The Minneapolis police department says that unfortunately, there are likely to be a few fake tickets that will slip through the cracks.

Officer Kim Lund says she fully expects to have to turn people away at U.S. Bank Stadium Sunday, because they have a counterfeit ticket.

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