So what do you do if you're a software pirate and want to expand into hardware piracy? Simple - if you're in China, you can pirate the company's logo on to your own hardware.
Which is exactly what has happened in Beijing, where pirates are said to have developed a parallel set of products, all branded under the NEC logo.
The thing I found most amusing about the report is that NEC officials admit the products are quite good, and that they even get requests for support on `NEC' hardware they don't even produce.
According to the International Herald Tribune, which reports on the story, investigators turned up what amounts to a complete and parallel company to the legitimate NEC, with 18 factories and warehouses across China and, of course, Taiwan.
It's difficult to see the Chinese government turning a blind eye to the monster NEC piracy, but Taiwan? I remember reading a few stories about intellectual copyright and Taiwan in a legal journal a few years ago. Basically the concept doesn't exist there...