By Eloise Evans on 20/06/2016

Counterfeit electrical products are everywhere now, and as they are so readily available to consumers, it’s kind of hard not to buy them sometimes. Electrical Safety First recently revealed that an estimated 2.5 million Brits have bought a counterfeit electrical item, either knowingly or accidentally, in the last year. This figure has doubled since the previous year. Electrical Safety First has also been investigating consumer’s attitudes towards counterfeit electrical products for the last two years and have found that, unsurprisingly, the purchase of counterfeit electrical products is on the rise, but also that the marketplace for these items is shifting. You can not only buy these through online marketplaces, but also through social media adverts and in-store. However, a majority are still purchased through online marketplaces.

The most influential factor on those who purchase counterfeit items knowingly is the price. One in twelve people said that they would buy a counterfeit if it was cheaper than the original. However, over half of people who have bought a fake product have experienced a problem with them. These figures have increased from last year.

Tests were carried out on popular counterfeit electrical products, such as e-cigarettes and blenders, by Electrical Safety First. Many of them can appear so sophisticated that you would not be able to tell the difference between the fake and the real deal. However, after testing these counterfeits they found that some of these products could have less than half of the internal components needed to run safely, and the products with only small fake internal components were at risk of exploding. These products could explode at any point, leaving people at risk of injury or property damage.

Electrical Safety First are urging people to ‘shop-smart’. Emma Apter, Head of Communications commented, “at best you could be swindled but at worst you could be putting your life at risk.” You should never chance it when it could be you and your family’s lives at stake. When buying any electrical appliance, always be sure to buy from an official retailer either online or in store. Be extremely careful when buying from online marketplaces, do not buy from unofficial sellers and make sure, when you receive the product that it has all of the UK and EU safety marks.  

 

 

Photo Source:Freepik

 Post Source: Electrical Safety First

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