ATLANTA, Nov. 3, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- World Micro, a global distributor of electronic components serving the electronics, commercial, military, medical, and aerospace markets, announced today that it has been featured in an in-depth look at the ongoing threat of counterfeit military electronic parts, in an investigative news report by WSB-TV's Jim Strickland. The two-part video aired Tuesday as part of the station's evening news and can be viewed on the WSBTV.com website at http://www.wsbtv.com/news/news/local/flood-fake-microchips-threaten-georgia-troops/nFSPD/ along with the accompanying story. The report describes how counterfeit parts had found their way into flight equipment at a Georgia military base, and unravels many aspects of a complex and possibly life endangering global supply chain issue.
In an exclusive interview at the company's Atlanta-area headquarters, WSB-TV's Strickland questioned Dan Ellsworth, president and CEO of World Micro, about receiving fake parts and what steps could be taken to halt this threat. During the interview, Ellsworth described how World Micro had received such parts in the past and now considers every part received as counterfeit, until it can be certified otherwise through an extensive in-house testing and verification process. Ellsworth explained that the government has yet to create the proper accountability for government parts buyers and suggested that a mandate to use only certified distributors for part sources would solve the problem. "The solution is simple. Parts needed that cannot be obtained through OCM (original component manufacturer) channels should be procured from an IDEA (Independent Distributor of Electronics Association) member company. All IDEA member companies are trained and certified and in essence, this would end the demand in China and stop the fake parts from entry into the U.S. Its simple, safe and easy for our government to implement," said Ellsworth.
Strickland also contacted Georgia senator Saxby Chambliss, who is likewise deeply concerned about the military's lacking accountability in the parts procurement process. Senator Chambliss has been conducting an investigation of his own on this issue in the Senate Armed Services Committee, and World Micro traveled to Capitol Hill last year to provide expert counsel to staff members working on behalf of the Committee. Like Sen. Chambliss, Ellsworth hopes that the government will soon find a solution to halt this ongoing problem. "If we have situations where we have parts that are going into mission-critical applications, we feel that we have to have the U.S. government stand behind us and help by mandating that parts be purchased only through certified distributors," said Ellsworth. The video segment featuring Senator Chambliss and Ellsworth can be seen at http://www.wsbtv.com/videos/news/sen-chambliss-demands-answers/vD4RL/
During WSB-TV's investigation, Strickland was given a tour of World Micro's expansive quality lab and shown firsthand how fake military parts can be spotted and what potential dangers these parts can pose if they find their way into military equipment. Strickland was shown a live X-ray examination of a normal-looking capacitor, which the X-Ray in fact revealed to be a fake. "When this unit is at altitude, that wire can snap, causing the capacitor to short circuit which would then overheat and catch on fire…on a flight deck or wherever the part is used, "explained Gary Beckstedt, director of quality at World Micro. World Micro has invested heavily in many different technologies to spot counterfeits and has been deeply involved in training other companies in ways to inspect for and detect these parts. In his investigative report, Strickland noted that the Senate Armed Services Committee plans to hold a hearing next week on the threat posed by counterfeit components.
About World Micro Components, Inc.
World Micro, Inc., is a global, aerospace, military, commercial, and medical electronic component and products distributor focused on quality systems. The company also leads the industry in detection of counterfeit components and anti-counterfeit education and training. Since 1996, World Micro has helped its customers solve difficult supply chain issues through innovative research, design, sourcing, stocking, procurement, inventory, and management solutions. World Micro, Inc. is privately held with headquarters in Roswell, Georgia, and an Asian distribution hub in Penang, Malaysia. The company's website is www.worldmicro.com and can be followed on Twitter at twitter.com/worldmicro.
SOURCE World Micro, Inc.