Counterfeit media is not new to the flash memory market. However, the increase in the number of counterfeits chips we have been seeing is notable. Counterfeit chips to the untrained eye look exactly like the real one. They may have even come out of the same factory. But there is usually identifiable differences in the media upon closer examination. If the media is functioning there are methods of identifying the whether the chip is real our not.
Commonly the counterfeiters will use a smaller sized storage chip then listed on the packaging and loop the code in the chip to respond as if it is a much larger size. If the chip is not responding correctly, examining the physical device, controller chip and storage chip can give the data recovery specialist ready identification of the counterfeit. The counterfeiter often will have spent a lot of time trying to make the exterior of the product, such as flash media (SD card or thumb drive) look like the original. However, the coding on the chips will be wrong or non-existent.
The manufactures information imprinted on the chips is something that data recovery specialists use to identify the chips and how they are designed. Without this information, it can be very difficult to recover the data. With the correct information, the data recovery specialist can run the chip make and model through various websites to acquire the correct chip design and layout to aid in the clients data recovery.