Intel, Newegg Investigate Sale Of Fake Chips

Late last week, the first claims surfaced that Newegg had sold fake Intel processors after at least one customer posted photos and other information of the allegedly fake products, to the Internet.

The "CPUs" in question were purchased between Mar. 1, and Mar. 4, according to a Newegg statement, and have FPO/BATCH# 3938B006 printed on the packaging. "Additionally, the Part Number on the heat sink will read CNFN936612 and there will be no wiring on the heat sink itself," according to the statement.

In an initial statement, Newegg also referred to a shipping error with certain recent orders involving one of its partners mistakenly sending "a small number of demo boxes instead of functional units." While feasible on its face, photos of the pretend processor packaging [\\] told a different story. The demo units were counterfeit.

Newegg subsequently released another statement Monday night naming Ipex Infotech of Fremont, Calif., as the supplier from which it received the fake processors. Newegg was told by Ipex that Ipex mistakely shipped demo units, according to Newegg.

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"We have since come to discover the CPUs were counterfeit and are terminating our relationship with this supplier," according to Newegg.

D&H Distributing Co. Inc., a Harrisburg, Pa.-based distributor, was initially " and incorrectly " reported in some accounts to be the supplier of the counterfeit processors. Newegg confirmed that D&H had nothing to do with the fake CPUs.

"Contrary to any speculation, D&H Distributing is not the vendor that supplied us with the Intel Core i7-920 CPUs in question," Newegg said in the latter statement.

In a statement issued to CRN, a senior D&H executive said "D&H takes this issue very seriously, as does the entire online and IT community, and we are anxious to see it resolved to the satisfaction of everyone involved. D&H has never bought anything other than genuine Intel product, sourced directly from Intel, and were very concerned that our name was inadvertently involved. We are very proud of the integrity we've built over our 92 years, and we are glad to see that the D&H name has been vindicated."

Meanwhile, a spokesperson at Ipex Infotech Inc., a Fremont, Calif.-based distributor, said the company is "still looking for legal consulting" and could not offer any further comment on the issue.

Newegg said it is reaching out to all customers who may have been received the fake processors.

"We have already sent out a number of replacement units and are doing everything in our power to resolve the matter promptly and with the least amount of inconvenience to our customers," Newegg said in a statement.

Intel said it was also investigating the matter. "Intel is getting samples to inspect and until then we can say that everything in the package appears fake," Daniel Snyder, an Intel spokesman, said in a statement, according to The Wall Street Journal.